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I am cooking some brisket on a gas grill. Following YouTube tutorials I made a smoking pouch/smoke bomb just like the ones they do on YouTube and filled it with newly purchased smoking pellets. As suggested I sealed the pouch, poked holes in it, placed it on top of a burner on one end, and turned the burner on high. I placed the brisket at the other end. Initially the temperature reached 300 degrees Fahrenheit with that single burner on high. Later I lowered it down to hold the temperature around 225-250. Strangely I haven't seen any smoke coming out of the smoking pouch. No action there whatsoever. One of the holes has gathered a tiny bit of brownish gooey stuff. That's it.

Temperature too low? A tutorial says hot smoking works in the range of 180 degrees and 275 degrees Fahrenheit.

For reference, I followed these tutorials: 1 2

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It is possible that you didn't poke big enough holes, or that the heat from the burner was not enough to cause the pellets to smoulder. You need to place the packet on the burner directly (actually on the rack above the burner, removing the diffuser), not on top of the diffuser (see Step 2 in these Step-by-step instructions). One way to test would be to fire up your grill, place a packet on the grill and visually check what setting you need to use to see smoke coming out of the packet.

Hot smoking is usually only done for a portion of the whole cooking time not the whole time. Generally you only need 30 min to 1 hour of smoking at the start, along with a long slow (~225 F/~110 C) cook for the rest of the time.

Also note that the temperature on the grill thermometer in the lid is not measuring the temperature at the cooking surface. The temperature on the lid is an indicator of the heat inside the grill at the point of the probe only! Ideally for smoking/slow cooking you need the temperature measured at the meat. This is especially the case with gas grills as they are not well sealed (won't work if they are), so a lot of the heat and smoke escapes out the gaps, but the probe is usually near the top of the lid, where heat accumulates. If you are inexperienced at smoking I wouldn't be too concerned about fine temperature control at this point - a little too hot at the start shouldn't matter too much in the long run.

  • I will definitely keep these tips in mind next time around. Thanks! Now after 8 hours' low grilling the struggle is to get the internal temperature up to the desired mark. I do have a wireless instant read thermometer with its probe inserted into the meat. The temperature has been hanging around 144 F for the past hour and seemingly refuses to go any higher.I don't think I should crank up the fire, as the grill temperature is already at 250 F... – Eddie Kal Aug 11 '20 at 1:02
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    @EddieKal - sounds like the stall: check out this page from AmazingRibs.com for information on how to get around it and how long it might take... They are the experts on BBQ and the science of BBQ. I use their Memphis dust recipe, with some modifications, on the odd occasion I do BBQ. – bob1 Aug 11 '20 at 3:15
  • I would transfer to the oven after the first hour or so, rather than messing with a grill that whole time. – Preston Sep 12 '20 at 0:06

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