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Keeping food warm after smoking

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  • Killa J
    Club Member
    • Aug 2020
    • 33
    • Prairieville, LA

    Keeping food warm after smoking

    I’m not sure if this is the right section to post these questions.


    When talking about resting the food after coming out of their smokers, I’ve seen a few people mention fake or faux Cambros. Are you just talking about cheaper brands of a similar insulated food carrier or something else? I’ve always just used an ice chest with some old towels. Is the faux Cambro better?

    How does everyone keep their BBQ hot after the rest? I’ve had times where food finished too early to still be hot for a get together and had to reheat. I’ve been thinking about getting an electric smoker and using it basically as an outdoor warming oven.
  • N227GB
    Club Member
    • Feb 2018
    • 338
    • Fort Myers, FL
    • ...

    #2
    The ice chest and old towels is the faux Cambro, you've got it!

    I've never used an electric smoker so can't speak to its effectiveness. Are you looking for a way to keep food warm outside?

    Comment


    • Killa J
      Killa J commented
      Editing a comment
      Outside or inside. My oven doesn’t hold low temperature well at all. The lowest it goes is 170, but the temperature swing is around 60 degrees when it’s set that low. It’s probably overkill for my purposes, but an electric smoker with PID has much tighter temp control.
  • Attjack
    Club Member
    • Aug 2017
    • 3992
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    #3
    It's kind of a confusing term. Cambro is a company that makes many products including insulated food transport boxes. Faux cambro is therefore not really a sensical term. We should just say hold the meat in an insulated box such a cooler or a commercial insulated food transport box.

    https://www.cambro.com/Products/insu...ood-transport/

    Comment


    • Killa J
      Killa J commented
      Editing a comment
      I wasn’t sure if everyone meant they were using knockoff brand insulated food carriers or not. Certainly would make my backyard cooking look professional though.
  • ComfortablyNumb
    Club Member
    • May 2017
    • 3259
    • Northeast Washington
    • KBQ C-60
      PK360
      Thermoworks Smoke
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    #4
    'Faux Cambro' is probably used because Cambro are high end (with the price) commercial products. An ice chest and towels are the poor man's (thrifty) way of accomplishing the same task.

    Comment

    • Willy
      Charter Member
      • Apr 2015
      • 1829
      • High Desert of the Great Southwest

      #5
      “Faux” means not genuine,so to me, “faux Cambro” perfectly descriptive, assuming one knows what a Cambro is/does.

      Comment

      • Chuck in Charlotte
        Club Member
        • Oct 2017
        • 151

        #6
        How many of you go through the step of heating up the faux cambro before you put the meat in? I think Meathead recommends hot water, but I've even held it upside down over the smoker exhaust to heat the inside a bit. Is it necessary?

        Comment


        • N227GB
          N227GB commented
          Editing a comment
          My Igloo chests are dark blue with a white lid so I turn them upside down and let them sit in the Florida sun while the meat is still in the cooker. Nature does its thing.

        • Parkin
          Parkin commented
          Editing a comment
          I've never really tried it, but the cooler comes from the garage which during the AZ summer is at least 110-120 out there! Gonna give it a shot this winter, though.
      • Randy-Phx
        Club Member
        • Apr 2018
        • 538
        • Phoenix, AZ

        #7
        I used to put the towels in the dryer. Now I have a faux cambro - a Cateraide with a thermobarrier in it. It makes the space much smaller to heat and the food can handle it. Also, I can put cold food below the hot food. It’s very convenient since we seem to take food to family gatherings often.

        Comment

        • jerrybell
          Charter Member
          • Aug 2014
          • 333

          #8
          I've done the faux Cambro with good results. Lately, I've been setting the indoor oven to 180 or so and letting it come to temperature. I place the meat in the oven and immediately turn the oven off. When the meat hits 160 (takes many hours) I turn the oven back on and set the temp to 170. The meat temp will usually drop to the low 150s (another hour or so) before leveling off and beginning to rise in temperature. If it hits the high 160s (more hours) I turn the oven back off.

          This sounds like more work than it is. It takes the meat many hours to move through the temp ranges. I don't usually have to hold for more than a couple hours but I did a brisket cook a couple weeks ago and it finished way earlier than planned and dinner got delayed. I ended up holding the brisket for about 7 hours using this method.

          Comment

          • DavidNorcross
            Club Member
            • Nov 2017
            • 1534
            • Virginia
            • Rec Tec RT-680
              Coleman RoadTrip LXX
              Javelin Pro Duo
              More Cast Iron than I care to admit

            #9
            It is like vasaline and petroleum jelly. One in the same. Placing meat in a cooler with towels keeps it warm for sure. There are many articles on the site that will help, but it works! Good question.

            Comment

            • jfmorris
              Club Member
              • Nov 2017
              • 3038
              • Huntsville, Alabama
              • Jim Morris

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              #10
              I've kept butts and brisket right off the smoker into an old Igloo cooler wrapped in foil and towels, and had the meat still be 160F 5 hours later. I think a lot of it is insulation and having the old towels to avoid letting the meat heat up the air space inside the cooler. The smaller the cooler the better too, I imagine.

              If I had to hold longer than 4-5 hours, I would go for the 170F oven, and as long as the meat is tightly wrapped, it should be ok.

              Comment

              • cgrover60
                Club Member
                • Mar 2016
                • 387
                • Albuquerque NM

                #11
                I use a Coleman Party stacker with a towel and foil pan which works great. I did see this recently and liked that it collapses for storage - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01BEQ79RA...v_ov_lig_dp_it

                Comment

                • Attjack
                  Club Member
                  • Aug 2017
                  • 3992
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                    Propane turkey Fryer

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                  #12
                  Can anyone recommend something more insulative than towels? I was wondering about those emergency blankets although they don't really have much volume to them. But maybe it would work better anyway?

                  Comment


                  • Mr. Bones
                    Mr. Bones commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thanks, Brother!

                    I have a few old, purty tired worn ones, use em fer throws on couch, chairs, etc.

                    used one 1 day to hold some boppers from th fact power was out...rolled um up in like two wraps of a corner, tucked th ends in, left on bed all day...they were still 35-40 when I got home from work...no cooler

                    All a towel woulda coulda done is present me with a wet towel, an warm beers...

                  • N227GB
                    N227GB commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Do you mean those made out of Mylar? At a buck apiece it may be worth trying.

                    https://coastbiomed.com/product/myla...SABEgJHcfD_BwE

                  • jerrybell
                    jerrybell commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Attjack A quick search on insulative fabrics. https://www.seattlefabrics.com/Insulations_c_59.html
                • Santamarina
                  Club Member
                  • Aug 2018
                  • 734
                  • Wildomar, CA

                  #13
                  Cooler works great. If keeping for a long time I’ll do the “warm” oven (mine’s also 170°F, but haven’t checked the swing yet). I’ve held brisket and pork shoulder overnight without issue. That’s my dirty little barbecue secret to having a delicious lunch and still sleeping at night! 😎

                  Comment

                  • Rocinante
                    Club Member
                    • Dec 2019
                    • 111
                    • Knoxville, TN

                    #14
                    I use just a basic white foam chest that you typically see at WallyWorld for a couple of bucks. I've had for some time now and it does the job for me. I put a towel around the side/ bottom and up around the top. The cooler slopes inward when it is in the up position, I typically place it on its side. When wrapped up good, a butt will still be in the 160-170 range for 4 hours or so.

                    Comment

                    • RustyHaines
                      Club Member
                      • Sep 2017
                      • 696
                      • Tiedeman's Pond, WI

                      #15
                      I use the towels and cooler (faux cambro) often. Last weekend I had an 8 lb pork butt cook straight through with no stall. It was 203 IT at 2:45 and dinner was scheduled for 6:00 but we are notoriously late I triple wrapped in heavy foil and 2 towels and put it in the smallest cooler that would accommodate the meat package. Removed from cooler at 6:30 (told you so) and pulled the still very warm, juicy, and delicious meat. Just note the bark suffers when you do this in case you are big fan of crunchy bark. The flavor of the bark is still there, just not the crunch.

                      Comment

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