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Meat-Up in Memphis 2021

Join us in Memphis for our Meat-Up! Space is limited to 400, secure your spot by booking early!
Click here for details. (https://amazingribs.com/memphis)
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Introduction and a request for help

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  • DavidNorcross
    Club Member
    • Nov 2017
    • 1019
    • Virginia
    • Rec Tec RT-680
      Coleman RoadTrip LXX
      Javelin Pro Duo
      More Cast Iron than I care to admit

    Welcome from Virginia. Coming from someone who owns a Hasty Bake, I would recommend the SNS Kamado as my suggestion for versatility. Bottom line you are going to get alot of opinions here and they will all be great. It comes down to you weighing all of the options with your needs.


    • FireMan
      Charter Member
      • Jul 2015
      • 7131
      • Bottom of Winnebago

      Welcome! Seein the size of yer fam &throwin in a few friends I’ll second the emotion on the PBC. Not a ton of money & really good in the capacity department. Eat good and have fun!


      • ScottyC13
        Club Member
        • Jul 2019
        • 426
        • Boston Area
        • Name: Scott, Chemical Engineer

          Weber Genesis
          Weber Spirit Special Addition, with Griddle and Grillgrates (just got)
          Thermoworks Smoke (2)
          Thermoworks Thermapen (2)
          Thermoworks IR (1)
          Maverick IR (1)
          Penzey's Spice rack with loads of spices

          Cooking, wine, guitar, golf, beach, board games, travel, herb gardening

          Want to get into BBQ and Smoking.

        Since I have the Weber Performer with SnS and smoke with now, I would say either get that set up or a PBC/WSM. All three are less money than your budget and allow you to get accessories like a Pit Viper fan with a digital controller. I haven’t cooked on a PBC, but knowledgeable folks here rave about. The Weber with the SnS make great food too.


        • LA Pork Butt
          Charter Member
          • Dec 2014
          • 4881
          • Grew up in New Orleans, lived in Texas for 20 years, lived in Mandeville, LA for 22 years. I now liv

          Welcome to the Pit from Dallas! You already have good advice, and some things to think about. I am a Kamado guy (BGE), and if not having to pay attention to 12-14 hour cooks is important to you a Kamado and a controller are a good combo. I have not eaten food cooked on a pellet cooker, but that might be another option. I see you live in PA, so as Spinaker noted it will be hard to beat a Kamado for cold weather cooking. Have fun with the search and the cooker. The reason there are so many cookers out there is that each cooker fills in for the weaknesses of a different cooker. Which limitations are you willing to live with?


          • holehogg
            Club Member
            • Nov 2017
            • 1870
            • Port Elizabeth, South Africa

            Greetings from South Africa


            • fzxdoc
              Founding Member
              • Jul 2014
              • 4707
              • My toys:
                Weber Summit Charcoal Grilling Center (WSCGC) aka Mr. Fancypants
                Pit Barrel Cooker (which rocks)
                Weber Summit S650 Gas Grill
                Weber Kettle Premium 22"
                Weber Jumbo Joe Premium 22" (a weird little 22" kettle mutant on 22"-long legs) (donated to local battered women's shelter.)
                Camp Chef Somerset IV 4-burner outdoor gas range

                Adrenaline BBQ Company's SnS, DnG and Large Charcoal Basket for WSCGC
                Adrenaline BBQ Company's Elevated SS Rack for WSCGC
                Adrenaline BBQ Company's SS Rack for DnG
                Grill Grate for SnS
                Grill Grates: five 17.375 sections (retired to storage)
                Grill Grates: six 19.25 panels for exact fit for Summit S650 gasser
                2 Grill Grate Griddles

                Fireboard Extreme BBQ Thermometer Package
                Fireboard control unit in addition to that in the Extreme BBQ Package
                Additional Fireboard probes: Competition Probes 1" (3) and 4" (1), 3 additional Ambient Probes. 1 additional Food Probe
                2 Fireboard Driver Cables
                Pit Viper Fan (to pair with Fireboard Fan Driver Cable)
                Pit Viper Fan new design (to pair with Fireboard Fan Driver Cable)
                Thermoworks Thermapen MK5 (pink)
                Thermoworks Thermapen MK4 (pink too)
                Thermoworks Temp Test 2 Smart Thermometer
                Thermoworks Extra Big and Loud Timer
                Thermoworks Timestick Trio
                Maverick ET 73 a little workhorse with limited range
                Maverick ET 733
                Maverick (Ivation) ET 732

                Grill Pinz
                Vortex (two of them)

                Two Joule Sous Vide devices
                VacMaster Pro 350 Vacuum Sealer
                Instant Pot 6 Quart Electric Pressure Cooker
                Instant Pot 10 Quart Electric Pressure Cooker
                Charcoal Companion TurboQue
                A-Maze-N tube 12 inch tube smoker accessory for use with pellets

                BBQ Dragon and Dragon Chimney

                Shun Classic 8" Chef's Knife
                Shun Classic 6" Chef's Knife
                Shun Classic Gokujo Boning and Fillet Knife
                Shun Classic 3 1/2 inch Paring Knife

              If you're just getting into charcoal cooking and you want to see what all the fuss is about, you can't go wrong with a PBC. $350 and you're in, $385 with the cover. Then you can spend the rest on a really good thermometer setup like the Fireboard.

              The PBC well made and does a great job with anything you throw at it. Plus cleanup is easy. Literally less than 5 minutes. You can cook in volume and it doesn't take up much space. Chicken, ribs, brisket, chuck roast, pork butt, bacon, meatloaf, you name it and you can do it on the PBC.

              I started with a gas grill, using it to smoke briskets, etc, for a lot of years. Then I got the PBC to dip my toe into charcoal+wood chunks smoking. What a game changer. There's a lot of good smoke flavor that comes out of that cooker and, as you get more involved in smoking and buy $omething el$e like a kamado (I bought a Weber Summit Charcoal Grilling Center next) , you'll still use your PBC a lot because you'll love cooking on it so much.

              With a PBC and a gasser, you've got a great combo.



              • EdF
                Club Member
                • Jul 2016
                • 3171
                • Atlantic Highlands, NJ
                • Uuni Pro (new kid in town)
                  Karubeque C-60
                  Large BGE since 2002 + plate setter + pizza stone + upper grid + stainless paella pan for drippings (the best!)
                  TEC Cherokee FR since 2014 (portable infrared grill - does a mighty sear)
                  Polyscience Sous Vide Pro since 2012 (wasn't much else available in those days)
                  Thermapen Air
                  ThermaQ (or its predecessor)
                  Thermoworks Hi temp IR
                  BBQ Dragon & Chimney of Insanity
                  Various other stuff

                Well, since > $1K has come up, take a look at the KBQ. https://amazingribs.com/node/381

                Aside from its being a "serious" cooker, there are 2 bits that might disqualify it: needs a stick about every half hour, and it needs electricity. Search the threads here on the forum and be prepared to salivate.


                • Texas Larry
                  Club Member
                  • May 2017
                  • 1063
                  • Wilson County, TX
                  • PrimoXL
                    Maverick 732
                    Thermoworks 2K Themocouple
                    Weber Go-Anywhere (for the beach!)
                    Dreaming of a really good stick-burner...
                    Favorite beer: Alaskan Amber

                  Welcome from south Texas!

                  I would certainly second the recommendation you check out the SNS Deluxe Kamado. Same general price range as the Big Joe I believe. Comes with a ton of accessories. Gives you true two zone grilling as well as traditional kamado cooking. I’m thinking hard about getting one now.


                  • Donw
                    Club Member
                    • Jul 2017
                    • 2552

                    Welcome from Maryland. Nothing else to add to the conversation that hasn’t already been said.


                    • klflowers
                      Club Member
                      • Sep 2015
                      • 2753
                      • Tennessee

                      Welcome from TN. Only thing I would add is that if you get a wsm get the 22. I have owned a wsm for years and I love it, but it is an 18” and every once in awhile I wish I had the extra capacity. But I have a kettle/sns too and that helps out for larger cooks. Good luck and let us know which way you decide to go.


                      • ofelles
                        Club Member
                        • Jun 2018
                        • 1469
                        • Brentwood CA
                        • Yoder YS640 on Comp cart
                          Klose 20x42 Charcoal Grill
                          LSG Insulated Cabinet
                          Jumbo Joe
                          VacMaster Pro 380 sealer
                          FireBoard and Fan
                          Thermoworks Signal
                          Thermoworks Dot
                          Thermopen Mk4

                        Welcome from the California Delta. As you can see you will get A Lot of advice here. I have found that it can be overwhelming. But it is solid advice.

                        I am not the type to dip my toe in to try the waters, I jump in the deep end. Started with a Pit Boss Kamado and found I it didn't work for me. I wanted a pellet grill for the ease of use and got a Yoder YS640 and I love it. Wanted a charcoal grill and got a David Klose 20x42 grill chief grill, love it. Wanting to up my game; I'm waiting on a Lone Star Grillz insulated cabinet smoker, I hope I will love it. Bigger and more is better!

                        That being said the PBC, WSM, kettle, Joe and Slow n low kamados are all great cookers and smart choices. Good luck and welcome again.


                        • rickgregory
                          Founding Member
                          • Aug 2014
                          • 419
                          • Seattle, WA

                          So in thinking about it a little more I think I'd do this:

                          Get the SNS for your Weber. AND get the PBC. That would give you a TON of capacity if you do a big summer cook (or 3) or you could grill on the weber and gasser while smoking on the PBC or... a lot of things.

                          Do you NEED the SNS with the PBC? nah. But it's $100 and so it's not a big additional investment.


                          • KarchyBBQ
                            Club Member
                            • Nov 2017
                            • 68
                            • Wheaton, MD
                            • ——
                              Weber Kettle 26”
                              SnS standard
                              Thermoworks Smoke, Theromoworks Dot, ThermoPop

                            Greetings from another SEPA native (also MontCo!). I’d add the slow n sear to your kettle and see how that works for you. I use the standard slow n sear 2.0 in my 26” kettle and can comfortably handle cooks for 15-20 people which we do about once a month or so. Beyond that, at that budget number and needing or wanting some lay flat space, a pellet grill with smoke tube could be the most bang for the buck. As you can see though, the PBC is a very popular and effective cooker.


                            • CK1
                              Club Member
                              • Sep 2018
                              • 1

                              First, welcome! Next, I'd say your first thought was the best one for where you are...a Kamodo Joe (or any ceramic like a BGE or Primo) smoker.The ceramics are great smokers to get your feet wet, perfect your fire control skills and they give you the ability to smoke or grill. The quality of Q is really good, certainly an upgrade from your electric. I'd also recommend you pick one up used. I bought my 24" Big Joe for $800 with most of the options included. After using it for a while it led me to my decision to purchase an offset plus keep my gas grill and the Joe too. Best of luck.


                              • HawkerXP
                                Club Member
                                • Jul 2016
                                • 4672
                                • Northern Virginia
                                • 3 Weber kettles, and a PBC
                                  Dot w two probes
                                  Slo n Sear
                                  Cold beer

                                Welcome to the Pit! I enjoy my kettles and PBC. They all have a place in my outdoor cooking!




                                Meat-Up in Memphis 2021

                                Join us in Memphis for our Meat-Up! Space is limited to 400, secure your spot by booking early!
                                Click here for details. (https://amazingribs.com/memphis)
                                See more
                                See less
                                Meat-Up in Memphis

                                T-Shirts & More T-Shirts & More
                                Order men's and women's T-Shirts, Sweatshirts, Aprons, Mugs, Caps, Tote Bags, Flasks, and more, all imprinted with the Pitmaster Club logo. There's even a spiral bound journal where you can make notes on your cooks.

                                Cool Embroidered Shirt Cool Embroidered Shirt
                                This beautifully embroidered shirt is the same one Meathead wears in public and on TV. It's wash and wear and doesn't need ironing (really!), but it is a soft cottonlike feel. Choice of four colors and both men's and women's.

                                Click here for more info.

                                Support ARC

                                Many merchants pay us a small referral fee when you click our links and purchase from them. On Amazon it works on everything from grills to diapers, they never tell us what you bought, and it has zero impact on the price you pay, but has a major impact on our ability to improve this site! And remember, we only recommend products we love. If you like AmazingRibs.com, please save this link and use it every time you go to Amazon.


                                BBQ Stars


                                These are not ads or paid placements. These Are Some Of Our Favorite Tools And Toys.

                                These are products we have tested, won our top awards, and are highly recommend. Click here to read how we test, about our medals, and what they mean.

                                Use our links when you buy things

                                Many merchants pay us a small referral fee when you click our links and purchase from them. On Amazon it works on everything from grills to diapers, they never tell us what you bought, it has zero impact on the price you pay, but has a major impact on our ability to improve this site! If you like AmazingRibs.com, please save this link and use it every time you go to Amazon




                                Surely you know somebody who loves outdoor cooking who deserves a gift for the holidays, birthday, anniversary, or just for being wonderful. There he is, right in the mirror! Here are our selections of best ideas, all Platinum or Gold Medalists, listed by price.

                                Click here to see our list of Gold Medal Gifts

                                Digital Thermometers Are Your Most Valuable Tool And Here's A Great Buy!

                                maverick PT55 thermometer

                                A good digital thermometer keeps you from serving dry overcooked food or dangerously undercooked food. They are much faster and much more accurate than dial thermometers. YOU NEED ONE!

                                Click here for more info on the Maverick PT-55 Waterproof Instant-Read Thermometer Review shown above. It may be the best value in a thermometer out there

                                If you have a Weber Kettle, you need the Slow 'N' Sear

                                slow n sear

                                The Slow 'N' Sear turns your grill into a first class smoker and also creates an extremely hot sear zone you can use to create steakhouse steaks.

                                Click here for our article on this breakthrough tool

                                Bring The Heat With Broil King Signet's Dual Tube Burners

                                the good one grill

                                The Broil King Signet 320 is a modestly priced, 3-burner gas grill that packs a lot of value and power under the hood. Broil King's proprietary, dual-tube burners get hot fast and are able to achieve high, searing temps that rival most comparatively priced gas grills. The quality cast aluminum housing carries a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

                                Click here to read our complete review

                                The Good-One Is A Superb Grill And A Superb Smoker All In One

                                the good one grill

                                The Good-One Open Range is a charcoal grill with an offset smoke chamber attached. It is dramatically different from a traditional offset smoker. The grill sits low in front and doubles as a firebox for the smoke chamber which is spliced on above and behind so it can work like a horizontal offset smoker only better. By placing the heat source behind and under the smokebox instead of off to the side, Open Range produces even temperature from left to right, something almost impossible to achieve with a standard barrel shaped offset.

                                Click here to read our complete review

                                Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker

                                Griddle And Deep Fryer All In One

                                The flat top does the burgers and the fryer does the fries. Use the griddle for bacon, eggs, and home fries. Or pancakes, fajitas, grilled cheese, you name it. Why stink up the house deep frying and spatter all over? Do your fried chicken and calamari outside. Blackstone's Rangetop Combo With Deep Fryer does it all. Plus it has a built in cutting board, garbage bag holder, and paper towel holder. An additional work table on the left side provides plenty of counter space.

                                Click here to read our detailed review and to order

                                Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker

                                The Pit Barrel Cooker May Be Too Easy

                                The PBC has a rabid cult following for good reason. It is absolutely positively without a doubt the best bargain on a smoker in the world. Period. This baby will cook circles around the cheap offset sideways barrel smokers in the hardware stores because temperature control is so much easier. Best of all, it is only $299 delivered to your door!

                                Click here to read our detailed review and the raves from people who own them

                                The Undisputed Champion!


                                The Thermoworks Thermapen MK4 is considered by the pros, and our team, to be the single best instant read thermometer. Don't accept cheap substitutes.  Click here to read our test results and comprehensive review and why it won our Platinum Medal .

                                Compact Powerful Sear Machine For Your Next Tailgater


                                Char-Broil's Grill2Go x200 is a super-portable, fun little sizzler made of heavy, rust-proof cast aluminum. The lid snaps shut. Grab the handle and you're off to the party! Char-Broil's TRU-Infrared design produces searing heat while reducing fuel consumption. A 16 ounce LP gas canister is enough to keep you flipping burgers for hours.

                                Click here to read our detailed review and to order

                                The Cool Kettle With The Hinged Hood We Always Wanted

                                NK-22-Ck Grill

                                Their NK22CK-C Charcoal Kettle Grill puts a few spins on the familiar kettle design. In fact, the hinged lid with a handle on the front, spins in a rotary motion 180 degrees. It's hard to beat a Weber kettle, but Napoleon holds its own and adds some unique features to make the NK22CK-C a viable alternative.

                                Click here for more about what makes this grill special


                                G&F Suede Welder's Gloves

                                Heat Resistant Gloves With Extra Long Sleeves Hold The Hot Stuff

                                If you're using oven mitts at the grill, it's time to trade up. Say hello to these suede welder's gloves. They're heat resistant enough to handle hot grill grates, and flexible enough to handle tongs. The extra long sleeves even let you reach deep into the firebox to move hot logs without getting burned. Our Fave.

                                Click here to read our detailed review

                                Click here to order from Amazon

                                GrillGrates Take Gas Grills To The Infrared Zone

                                grill grates

                                GrillGrates(TM) amplify heat, prevent flareups, make flipping foods easier, keep small foods from committing suicide, kill hotspots, are easier to clean, flip over to make a fine griddle, and can be easily removed and moved from one grill to another. You can even throw wood chips, pellets, or sawdust between the rails and deliver a quick burst of smoke to whatever is above. Every gas grill needs them.

                                Click here for more about what makes these grates so special

                                PK 360 grill

                                Is This Superb Charcoal Grill A Kamado Killer?

                                The PK-360, with 360 square inches of cooking space, this rust free, cast aluminum charcoal grill is durable and easy to use. Four-way venting means it's easy to set up for two zone cooking with more control than single vent Kamado grills. It is much easier to set up for 2-zone cooking than any round kamado. Beautifully designed and completely portable. Meathead says it is his preferrred grill.

                                Click here to read our detailed review of the PK 360

                                Click here to order it direct from PK and get a special deal for AmazingRibs.com readers only

                                kareubequ bbq smoker

                                Our Favorite Backyard Smoker

                                The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. The quality of meat from this machine is astonishing. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven. It is our favorite smoker, period.

                                Click here for our review of this superb smoker

                                Masterbuilt MPS 340/G ThermoTemp XL Propane Smoker

                                masterbuilt gas smoker

                                The First Propane Smoker With A Thermostat Makes This Baby Foolproof

                                Set ThermoTemp's dial from 175° to 350°F and the thermostat inside will adjust the burner just like an indoor kitchen oven. All you need to do is add wood to the tray above the burner to start smokin'.

                                Click here to read our detailed review

                                Professional Steakhouse Knife Set

                                masterbuilt gas smoker

                                Our founder, Meathead, wanted the same steak knives used by steakhouses such as Peter Luger, Smith & Wollensky, Morton's, Kobe Club, Palm, and many others. So he located the manufacturer and had them stamp our name on some. They boast pointed, temper-ground, serrated, high-carbon stainless-steel, half-tang blades with excellent cutting edge ability. The beefy hardwood handle provides a comfortable grip secured by three hefty rivets. He has machine washed his more than 100 times. They have never rusted and they stay shiny without polishing. Please note that we do not make, sell, or distribute these knives, they just engrave them with our name.

                                Click here to read our detailed review and to order

                                Fireboard: The Ultimate Top Of The Line BBQ Thermometer

                                fireboard bbq thermometer

                                With the ability to monitor up to six temperatures simultaneously with either Bluetooth or Wifi on your mobile phone, tablet, or computer, Fireboard is the best digital thermometer we’ve tested.

                                Click here to read our detailed review

                                Finally, A Great Portable Pellet Smoker

                                Green Mountain Davey Crockett Grill

                                Green Mountain's portable Davy Crockett Pellet Smoker is one mean tailgating and picnic machine. But it's also gaining popularity with people who want to add a small, set it and forget it pellet smoker to their backyard arsenal. And with their WiFi capabilities you can control and monitor Davy Crocket from your smart phone or laptop.

                                Click here to read our detailed review and to order