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Best Ever Smoked Barbecue

BBQ Smoked Brisket, Ribs and Chicken…..a carnivore’s dream.

BBQ Platter

BBQ Platter

I can blame credit Ken Ayers for this smoking journey of mine.  We used to be on the same team at work and when Thanksgiving came around, we would beg him to bring in his smoked turkey.  He has ninja bbq skills with a smoker, I admired it, and he encouraged me to give it a try.  I researched it and the following spring when Mother’s day came around, my husband asked me “My beautiful bride, mother of my children, what would you like for Mother’s Day?”  Well, he didn’t exactly use those words, but he did ask me what I wanted.  I said “a smoker” so off we went to Lowes and a few minutes later I picked out this beauty.  Mostly because it had a beer bottle opener mounted right on the front of it.  We all know drinking beer is a fundamental part of smoking, I’m sure it’s written in the recipe somewhere.

We got home with the smoker and my husband went straight to the boys’ rooms to roust them from their beds, saying, “get up, for Mother’s Day we’re building mom a patio to smoke on.”  They’re all like “OK…..wait….what?”

Within a few hours they cleared a space next to the deck, leveled it, framed it, set in the tiles, grouted with sand, washed and swept it dry, got my smoker in place and a bucket of ice cold beer.  Ahhh….an incredible Mother’s Day gift.

So, it’s been a few years and I’m finally starting to get the hang of it.  Learning the nuances of how to smoke meat takes time and practice.  I’ve had failures.  Epic failures.  But those were just opportunities to try again and learn from my mistakes.

I am no where near great - but I can smoke a decent chicken, brisket and rack of ribs.  Although it’s nowhere near close to Ken’s turkey, I keep trying!

Here is my set up…notice the important beer bottle opener, bowl of soaked apple & hickory shavings, spray bottle filled with apple cider, chunks of dry apple & hickory wood, and charcoal, various tongs and my chair to rest and watch the world go by…in my backyard.  Mostly my hubs mowing the grass, weeding, cleaning the deck, washing the windows, cleaning out the garage…but there’s no way I can help him because I have a very important job - that is to maintain the smoker temperature, drink beer and sit.

Smoking Chicken

Smoking Chicken

That was a bit of a fib.  I work on it, he works on it, we both maintain the temperature, we both peek and poke, spray and turn, monitor and talk to the neighbors who’ve arrived at the gate wondering what’s smoking over here and what dollar amount would we accept for a rack of ribs….name our price.

Smoking Ribs

Smoking Ribs

BBQ Chicken Thighs

BBQ Chicken Thighs

It’s clear, this is a labor of love, it takes a person who’s committed to the process of perfecting their own bbq.  Although, I have to say,  I’m with the rest of you when it comes to feeling in the mood for bbq we order take-out or go out.  But I have to admit, when my hubs says mid-week….”lets smoke something this weekend”, I smile to myself and know he’s feeling like a stay-cation and wanting something homemade and from our own kitchen.

The link below is one that I use….read up a bit, pick your meat, set out a block of time and go to it!   I use my own bbq sauce, by the way.


My favorite go-to recipe.  Thanks Oklahoma Joe!



BBQ Sauce

BBQ Sauce


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