Best Cold Smoke Generator For Best Results

Cold smoked salmon makes you salivate, isn’t it? Who wouldn’t want to be able to reproduce those satisfying cold smoked dishes in the comfort of your own home? Here, we will breakdown and share what we know about cold smoking and the best cold smoker generators to get that job done and fill your tummy with delicious smoky food.

If you are just looking for a quick recommendation, we suggest that you go with the Smoke Daddy Big Kahuna to start things off with. If you do have the time, read on.

The List Of Models That We Will Introduce In This Guide

What Is Cold Smoking?

Generally, cold smoking is a technique to infuse smoky flavor and preserve food. When it is used with cured food, it can last for weeks without the need to be refrigerated. However, it is important to make a distinction between cold and hot smoking here.

For cold smoking, we are working with cold food and not hot food. The food remains raw throughout the smoking process. That is because cold smoking often occurs at a temperature between 68F to 90F and that is way not enough to cook food.

Difference Between Cold Smoking And Hot Smoking

We are a big proponent of hot smoking in this blog. But do not be mistaken, while it is also smoking, it is not the same as cold smoking.

Hot smoking as we are more familiar with cook food in a charcoal, gas or even pellet smoker. The food is smoked over a higher temperature around 250F and often over a longer period of time. The food, in this case, is not raw and can be consumed while cold smoked food may not be consumable.

What Types Of Food Are Generally Good For Cold Smoke?

Cold smoking is generally used for food such as cheese or nuts, but we can also use them in BBQ food such as meats like chicken, pork, or beef. The food is cold smoked from hours to even days to foster that smoky taste.

If you have never cold smoked before, it will probably a better idea to get started with low risk food like cheese and leave the meat to the professionals. This will allow you to get a handle on the technique while not endangering yourself with the food safety risks.

What Kind Of Cold Smoke Generator Are There?

Attached On Cold Smoke Generator

These types work as an additional attachment to the grill you already owned. And to use these cold smoke generators, you would usually need to perform some small invasive adjustments to your grill, such as drilling a hole.

Standalone Cold Smoke Generator

These types work separately from the grill or if you don’t have a grill. You do not have to make any sort of reconstruction to your grill and often, you just need a hole – such a vent to pipe the smoke in.

Portable Cold Smoke Generator

For those who wish to take cold smoking outdoors. These handheld cold smokers are the best option out there.

Best Cold Smoking Wood

Burning things create smoke, but not all smoke wood is created the same. The best wood for smoking infuses the right flavor into your food. Here is a handy dandy list of wood that you can use to cold smoke your meat.

One additional tip – do not use big chunks of wood to cold smoke. Use small fine pieces like wood pellets or small wood chips to cold smoke. You want to create loads of smoke at low temperature and not high temperature like hot smoking.

What Is A Cold Smoker Generator?

A cold smoke generator is a cheap mechanism to generate tons of smoke from burning wood chips or wood dust. It is not complicated to use it and often needs you set it up with little preparation work.

Best Cold Smoke Generators For Cold Smoking Your Food

#1. Smoke Daddy Magnum P.I.G. Cold Smoke Generator


The first model that we are going to recommend in our list comes from Smoke Daddy. If you are also a supporter of small business that is the core backbone of our economy; Smoke daddy is a family owned business that makes good quality products.

This smoke generator works for both hot or cold smoking and it can be used as an external attachment to attach on an existing unit, like a grill. This model is also good for smoking a large quantity of food in a large unit.

Build wise. The Magnum P.I.G. Cold Smoke Generator is made from heavy gauge SCH 40 6061 precision machined aluminum that is designed for a proper seal and long product life. This product is also designed with the smoke outlet tube above the fuel source to prevent clogging. For easy lighting, there is a removable end cap.

As we smoke, there will be plenty of ashes and fear is that it will interfere with the air flow. For this model, it also has plenty of room for hot ash and is designed so as not to interfere with air flow.

What Do Other People Think Of This Model?

One has mentioned that this model is great as an additional attachment. There are also mentions that you are able to control the smoke with ease and a user has also mentioned that it has elevated their smoking experience to another level.

Features Of This Model At A Glance

  • Dimensions Of This Model: 13 x 12.2 x 6.5 inches
  • Weight Of The Model: 6.95 pounds

The Purchase Comes with

  • Cold Smoker Body
  • Adjustable Air Pump
  • Threaded Outlet Tube
  • Shoot Across Tube
  • 3 Feet Silicone Hose
  • Spring Baffle
  • Stainless Steel Cleaning Brush

#2. Smoke Daddy Big Kahuna Cold Smoke Generator

If you are loving the previous model but hope that it will be bigger. Then this Big Daddy Big Kahuna will meet your needs. Like the magnum, this model is built to last. It is made with heavy gauge SCH 40 6061 precision machined aluminum that is designed for a proper seal and long product life.

The difference between these two models is that the Big Kahuna is made to be bigger in smoke capacity and it is great to be attached to big appliances up to one that is refrigerator sized. This model can hold up to 3 cups of fuel – can be wood chips or wood pellets. This model can also be refilled easily and at any time without the need to relight or reopen the smoker.

Also, the big Kahuna is also designed with the smoke outlet tube above the fuel source to prevent clogging and a removable end cap for easy lighting. This product also has plenty of room for hot ash and is designed such that it will not interfere with air flow.

What Do Other People Think Of This Model?

Users think that this model works great. Some has mentioned that if you are torn between the Magnum or Big Kahuna, go for the big Kahuna. Owners have also mentioned that this is a must have for smoking your food.

Features Of This Model At A Glance

  • Dimensions Of This Model: 10 x 8 x 5 inches
  • Weight Of The Model: 5 pounds

The Purchase Comes with

  • Cold Smoker Body
  • Adjustable Air Pump
  • Threaded Outlet Tube
  • Shoot Across Tube
  • 3 Feet Silicone Hose
  • Spring Baffle
  • Stainless Steel Cleaning Brush

#3. Nak Cold Smoke Generator for BBQ Cold Smoking


The next model on our list comes from Nak. Compared to other models that we introduce; this is more intuitive. To use this, you will just need to add the wood chips; it can be hickory, pecan, oak or any kind blend or mix that you like, then pack it tight. Light the wood chips or dust at the end of the generator and it can billow smoke for up to 7 hours.

What makes this model good is that it is way cheaper and more affordable than the rest we introduced. That is because it does not use any electronic parts in its design and is more mechanical in nature. Like how we use the mosquito coil of our grandparent’s era, this product works the same way and gets the job done.

The Nak smoke generator is also made to be durable in addition to its already low cost. The 304 stainless steel will ensure that the product lasts a long time. One tip here, if you are using this model already and finds that the wood chips will be kept lit, it might be because the chips itself are moist.

What Do Other People Think Of This Model?

Owners are appreciative of the low price that this product comes in. Users have also feedback that this model is ample to smoke one salmon fillet.

Features Of This Model At A Glance

  • Dimensions Of This Model: 8.3 x 7.3 x 1.6 inches
  • Weight Of The Model: 0.7 pounds
  • Diameter Of The Model: Roughly 18.5cm

#4. Aobosi Portable Infusion Smoker


This model makes our list due to the portability of this thing. This unique make is design to be able to smoke your food anywhere, even if on the kitchen tabletop or outdoors. Although, I will really doubt that you will want to cold smoke out there.

This nifty little handheld cold smoker works like a handheld device. But do note that this device is only used to smoke a small portion of food like a piece of salmon at any one point in time. To use this model, simply add the wood chips in the wood chamber, fire the chips and turn on the fan with a button and it is ready to smoke your food through a tube.

The Aobosi works with 4 x AA batteries. However, do note that the batteries do not come with the purchase. For cleaning, you will need to wipe the burn chamber with a damp cloth and dry it with a kitchen towel or let it dry naturally. At the point of writing, there is a one-year limited warranty on this product.

There is no assembly required for this product, which is awesome. Plug and play.

What Do Other People Think Of This Model?

Owners are astonished that despite the relatively small size of this model, they are able to smoke efficiently. Users also feedback that the model is intuitive to use. Most are of the opinion that this little device is a value for money.

Features Of This Model At A Glance

  • Dimensions Of This Model: 6.7 x 2.3 x 1.9 inches
  • Weight Of The Model: 0.6 pounds
  • Powered By: 4 x AA batteries

#5. Smokehouse Smoke Chief Cold Smoke Generator


The last but not the least product that makes our list comes from Smokehouse. Smoke Chief operates on a 110 Vac power source, much like the Smoke Daddy that we have introduced above. This product works by simply filling it up with BBQ pellets then plug it into the power source and you are ready to go.

This model will sit well with most grill model. You will place it beside the grill and pipe the smoke in through the rotisserie hole. Note that this model will only work with wood pellets and not wood chips. Smoke chief can smoke up to 3 hours with one cup of wood pellets.

At the point of writing, this model is covered with a limited warranty. But do check with the manufacturer before purchasing as the terms can change from time to time.

What Do Other People Think Of This Model?

Owners feedback that the model is very efficient and burns at a consistent rate. Some has suggested that for those who are new to cold smoking should try this model. However, there are feedbacks that the model might clog up and the fan might need improvement.

Features Of This Model At A Glance

  • Dimensions Of This Model: 9.5 x 4 x 12.1 inches
  • Weight Of The Model: 7 pounds
  • Powered By: 110 Vac

The Dangers Of Cold Smoking And Tips To Keep Yourself Safe

Glancing through the internet and you will find dozens of articles either scare you into not smoking your food or did not cover the risks of cold smoking food completely. Here, we prefer to give you a complete picture of it.

Dangers of Cold Smoking

We have mentioned that cold smoking occurs at a low temperature, even lower than that of the safe zone or danger zone depending on which angle you are coming from. That means that cold smoking creates the perfect environment to breed bacteria. Two of the more well-known bacteria among the community are botulism and listeria.

Smoking meat and fish like salmon carries a higher risk as compared to say cheese. Some of you might think that you would be safe if you cure the meat before cold smoking. Well, curing the meat inhibits the growth of bacteria but do not eliminate them entirely. The only sure way to eliminate bacteria from your food is to cook it with high heat above the danger zone.

Also, cold smoked fish also carries a risk of parasitic infection. You might be familiar with this – tapeworm. These parasites can find their way into the meat. While heat would normally kill such parasites, cold smoking does not.

Tips To Keep Yourself Or Your Family Safe

Tip #1. Don’t Cold Smoke Your Food

This is not a joke. Seriously, there are certain groups of people that should refrain from eating cold smoked food at any cost. Due to the high inherent risk of bacteria of cold smoked food, high risk groups such as pregnant ladies, the elderly and the immune-weak.

Tip #2. Do Not Skim On The Quality Of Meat

Get your meat from the highest quality source you can find. Get it from a clean place where you know that they have the most rigid quality assurance system and checks in place. This will reduce the risk of getting compromised meat. In other words, the fish you get should be tapeworm-free.

Tip #3. Always Cure Your Meat Before Cold Smoking

If you remember, we mentioned above that the curing your meat does not kill the bacteria. But not curing your meat allows the bacteria to grow exponentially. The National Center For Home Food Preservation recommends that only cured products are to be cold smoked.

Tip #4. Use Cold Smoking As A Preparation Method

Think of it this way. Cold smoking is a way to infuse the smoky flavor into your food without firing up the charcoal grill and grilling it at 400F. Now that you have cold smoked your cured meat, you can cook it with a stovetop griddle for example and still can get that light smoky flavor.

This way, you can enjoy the taste and be safe from eating raw, uncooked food. Best of both worlds with a little compromise.

Cold Smoke Generators Makes Cold Smoking Easier

In this guide, we have gone through all the nooks and cranny of cold smoking and how to use a cold smoke generator to get that job done. We have also suggested a list of models that you can use to start cold smoking and get on the ground running. If at this point in time, you are still facing difficulties in getting one to start with, we will suggest that you use the Smoke Daddy Big Kahuna Cold Smoke Generator. If you do not have a grill and wants to cold smoke anyway, try the Aobosi Portable Infusion Smoker, just make sure that the container for the food is sealed

Like this article?

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on email
Share on print

Leave a comment