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Drum Smoker

Discover the distinctive smoky flavors with Kookio's exclusive range of Drum Smokers. Ideal for both amateur grill enthusiasts and seasoned pitmasters, our drum smokers, also known as pit drum smokers or barrel smokers, are celebrated for their simplicity and efficiency. These smokers utilize indirect heat from charcoal and wood chips, making them perfect for long, slow cooking sessions. Their vertical design not only saves space but allows for even heat distribution and consistent temperatures, ensuring your meats are perfectly tender and flavorful every time. Dive into the art of smoking with our durable, high-performance drum smokers and elevate your BBQ game to professional levels.


Hunsaker Vortex 55 Gallon Drum Smoker

Hunsaker Vortex Smokers
Original price $999.00 - Original price $1,149.00
Original price
$999.00 - $1,149.00
$999.00 - $1,149.00
Current price $999.00

Why We Love it Hunsaker Vortex Smokers have taken the barbecue world by storm, and for good reason. Customer reviews rave about thei...

View full details
Original price $999.00 - Original price $1,149.00
Original price
$999.00 - $1,149.00
$999.00 - $1,149.00
Current price $999.00

30 Gallon Hunsaker Vortex Smoker | Portable, Durable, and Easy to Use

Hunsaker Vortex Smokers
Original price $799.99 - Original price $799.99
Original price $799.99
$799.99 - $820.00
$799.99 - $820.00
Current price $799.99
In stock

30 Gallon Hunsaker Vortex Smoker Portable and easy to use Durable construction Perfect for smoking meats, vegetables, and more The 30 Gallon Huns...

View full details
Original price $799.99 - Original price $799.99
Original price $799.99
$799.99 - $820.00
$799.99 - $820.00
Current price $799.99

Drum Smokers

Explore the rich, authentic flavors of traditional BBQ with Kookio's carefully curated collection of drum smokers. These versatile units, often referred to as pit drum smokers or barrel smokers, are renowned for their exceptional performance and ease of use, making them a favorite among both amateur grill enthusiasts and professional pitmasters alike.

How Drum Smokers Work

Drum smokers, known for their simple yet effective design, operate on the principle of indirect heat, using charcoal as the primary fuel source. This design features a tight-sealed barrel that traps heat and smoke from the burning charcoal and wood chips at the base, which then circulates around the food arranged on racks above. The drum’s cylindrical shape ensures even distribution of smoke and heat, cooking the food slowly and infusing it with a distinctive smoky flavor that’s hard to achieve with other types of grills.

The Appeal of Drum Smokers

One of the main reasons drum smokers are beloved in the BBQ community is their efficiency in maintaining consistent temperatures. Once dialed in, these smokers can hold a steady temperature for hours, making them ideal for long smoking sessions without the need for constant monitoring. This makes them particularly good for cooking tough cuts like brisket or pork shoulders, which benefit from extended cooking times to achieve perfect tenderness.

Versatility and Ease of Use

Despite their rudimentary look, drum smokers offer a surprising amount of versatility. They can be used to smoke a wide variety of foods, from classic BBQ meats to cheeses and vegetables. Adjusting the air intake and exhaust vents changes the smoker's internal temperature, giving users fine control over the cooking process. Additionally, the vertical design allows for multiple racks of food to be smoked simultaneously, maximizing the cooking area without sacrificing quality.

Durability and Community

Drum smokers are not only effective but also incredibly durable. Constructed from high-grade materials, these barrel smokers are designed to withstand the elements and the rigors of regular use. Their robust construction ensures that they can be a part of your cooking arsenal for years to come. Moreover, the community around drum smoking is vibrant and supportive, with numerous forums, competitions, and BBQ events dedicated to the craft of smoking with drum smokers.


At Kookio, our drum smokers are more than just cooking devices; they are a gateway to an immersive culinary adventure. Whether you’re smoking meats for a family dinner or competing in a BBQ competition, our drum smokers, embodying the spirit of both pit drum smokers and barrel smokers, are engineered to elevate your cooking experience. Dive into the world of smoking with one of our top-tier drum smokers and discover why this method is cherished by BBQ enthusiasts around the globe.

Frequently Asked Questions about Drum Smokers

Product Related Questions

How do drum smokers work?

Drum smokers function through a straightforward yet effective design that capitalizes on the vertical arrangement of the cooking space. At the base of the drum, charcoal and wood chips are ignited, creating heat and smoke. The cylindrical shape of the drum allows heat and smoke to rise evenly, surrounding and penetrating the food placed on racks above the heat source. This design facilitates consistent, low and slow cooking, ideal for smoking everything from briskets to ribs, by maintaining a stable temperature with minimal fluctuations.

How to maintain a drum smoker?

Maintaining a drum smoker is essential for prolonging its life and ensuring the quality of your BBQ remains high. Start by regularly cleaning out ash and residue from charcoal and wood, as excessive buildup can impede airflow and temperature control. After each use, it’s beneficial to wipe down the interior and grates to remove grease and food particles. Periodically, check the integrity of the smoker’s seals and hardware to ensure they are secure and intact. To protect the smoker from the elements, cover it when not in use, especially if stored outdoors.

Which is better, a vertical or horizontal smoker?

Choosing between a drum smoker (vertical) and a horizontal smoker depends largely on your specific needs and preferences. Drum smokers are generally more space-efficient, fitting more cooking capacity into a smaller footprint, which makes them ideal for those with limited space. They excel in maintaining consistent temperatures, crucial for the low-and-slow cooking method central to smoking. Horizontal smokers, on the other hand, often offer easier access to the cooking area and can be better for cooking large quantities of food simultaneously. They might provide more versatility in terms of cooking different types of foods at the same time. Ultimately, the decision should be based on how much space you have, what kinds of food you plan to cook, and how involved you want to be in the cooking process.

How to make smoker out of 55 gallon drum?

Creating a smoker out of a 55-gallon drum is a rewarding DIY project for BBQ enthusiasts who enjoy building their own equipment. Here’s a detailed step-by-step guide on how to transform a 55-gallon drum into a functional smoker:

Materials and Tools Needed:
  • 55-gallon steel drum
  • Drill with various bits
  • Metal cutting saw or a jigsaw with a metal blade
  • Grinder or sandpaper
  • High-temperature paint (optional)
  • Cooking grates (sized to fit inside the drum)
  • Steel hinges
  • Thermometer
  • Charcoal basket
  • Bolts, nuts, and washers
  • Lid handle
  • Air intake and exhaust valves
Steps to Make a Drum Smoker:
  1. Select the Drum: Choose a clean, unused 55-gallon drum. Drums that have contained only non-toxic materials are preferable as they minimize health hazards from residues.

  2. Prepare the Drum: Thoroughly clean the drum to remove any residues or contaminants. If the drum is painted, remove the paint with a grinder or sandpaper, especially from areas that will be exposed to heat, to avoid toxic fumes when smoking.

  3. Cut Openings:

    • Top Lid: Cut a lid on the top if one doesn’t exist. Leave a few inches around the edges to retain structural integrity.
    • Air Intakes and Exhaust: Drill multiple small holes or a few larger holes around the base for air intake. Include an exhaust vent at the lid or on the side near the top to control smoke and heat.
  4. Install Hardware:

    • Hinges: Attach hinges to the lid to allow easy opening and closing.
    • Handle: Install a handle on the lid for safety and convenience.
    • Thermometer: Mount a thermometer on the lid or the side to monitor the cooking temperature inside the smoker.
  5. Create a Charcoal Basket:

    • Construct or purchase a charcoal basket to hold the charcoal and wood. It should fit snugly at the bottom of the drum to maximize space for food.
  6. Install Cooking Grates:

    • Install supports for cooking grates inside the drum. You may need multiple levels depending on the amount of food you plan to smoke.
  7. Paint and Finish:

    • Paint the exterior of the drum with high-temperature paint to protect against rust and give your smoker a finished look.
  8. Season the Smoker:

    • Before the first use, it’s important to "season" or "cure" the smoker. Burn a large fire inside using charcoal and wood to coat the interior with smoke. This process helps protect the metal and improve the flavor of your smoked foods.
Consider Buying a Smoker:

While building your own smoker can be a fulfilling project, purchasing a commercially available smoker offers several advantages:

  • Reliability: Commercial smokers are designed for consistent performance and durability.

  • Safety: Manufactured smokers meet specific safety standards that DIY projects might not.

  • Time-saving: Buying a smoker saves time and effort required in building and ensures you get smoking right away.

  • Features: Commercial smokers often come with additional features like better heat control, warranties, and customer support.

For those looking for a more straightforward, reliable solution, exploring options from trusted brands might be worthwhile. This ensures you get a high-quality smoker that meets your culinary needs without the potential pitfalls of a DIY approach.

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