Last Updated: Mar 29, 2023 @ 10:33 am.

What is the best way to do smoked cocktails? Or smoked meats or cheese? The best smoking gun is an affordable way to add smoke flavor. We tried out several brands and asked our parent readers for their recommendations. Which was easiest to use? Best for drinks? Here are the ones we think are best.

FYI: We've been reviewing and rating products for the home and families since 1994. We don't take money or freebies from the brands we review. Our work is 100% reader-supported!

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Best Tried & True Brand

Fun to use
Love how this smoker adds subtle flavor to meats—and yes, it works well on cocktails too. Easy to clean.

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Best Tried & True Brand: Breville BSM600SIL Smoking Gun Food Smoker

Let’s talk smoking guns.

These clever gadgets work by igniting wood chips, which generates smoke that is sent through a hose to a glass dome (or plastic wrapped container). In the container, you put meats, cheese, veggies . . . or just about anything. Yes, even ice cream and butter. The smoke is “cold smoke” so your butter won’t melt!

Smoke-infused cocktails are another popular use.

One tip: You may want to use these guns outside (or in a well-ventilated space) to keep your house from smelling like a fireplace. Yes, a smoking gun can test your smoke detectors if you aren’t careful.

Another tip: many smokers are pictured with a dome (called a cloche) and other accessories, but these are often extra purchases. In this article, we note which smokers come with domes and extras.

This smoker by Breville is a reader favorite—and after spending several hours doing additional research to compare quality and durability, we agree: this is an excellent choice. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Easy to use.

• Includes wood chips.

• Adds nice subtle flavors to meats, cheese.

• Great for smoked popcorn.

• Easy to clean.

• Tip: be sure to keep screen clean to keep it from being blocked.

What Needs Work

• Screen can clog easily.

• Top heavy.

• Pricey.

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Best For Smoked Cocktails

Great house-warming gift idea
The star features here are the included resin dome and cup cover—perfect for smoked cocktails. Also nice: includes 4 cans of wood chips.

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Best For Smoked Cocktails: TMKEFFC Smoking Gun Food Smoker and Tools Set

This set is impressive—unlike other smoking guns that are just, well the gun, this set includes a resin dome cover, cup cover and even a drill bit for you to drill a hole in a container to do your own smoking. And yes, this set includes four cans of wood chips. Best of all, it worked like a charm, especially for smoked cocktails (the cup cover is handy).

What We Liked

 Great idea for a house-warming fit.

• Easy to clean.

• Easy to use.

• Affordable.

• Includes dome, cup cover and more.

What Needs Work

• Hose is rather short.

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Best Portable

Easy on the wallet
This smaller unit is perfect to take on the road or RV trip—and is super easy to use. Best for small projects.

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Best Portable: NIA Portable Smoke Infuser Hand-held Cold Smoking Gun

We know many of our readers like to take their culinary show on the road, whether in an RV or home rental. If that’s you, this handheld smoking gun by NIA would be our pick. Yes, it is small—that makes it portable. No, it doesn’t include a dome or any covers, but we found it works well and is easy to use.

What We Liked

• Puts out a good amount of smoke for such a tiny unit.

• Stainless-steel mesh filter.

• Easy to take on the road.

• Easy to clean.

What Needs Work

• Wood chips are not included.

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Best For Chefs

Integrated stand is nice
This unit puts out a large amount of smoke—perfect for a chef or large party. Well-made and easy to clean.

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Best For Chefs: PolyScience Breville Gun Pro Smoke Infuser

Sometimes you need to bring out the bigger gun—smoking gun, in this case. If you are planning a dinner party and need to smoke a large number of cocktails or meat/cheese, you need something with more capacity. This model by Breville is much like its less fancy sister, just bigger with more features (note you can customize the amount of smoke, something less expensive models don’t allow).

What We Liked

• Easy to clean.

• Airflow and intensity can be adjusted.

• Dishwasher safe barrel and burn chamber.

• Puts out a lot of smoke!

• Great for smoked drinks for a party.

• Stands easily.

What Needs Work

• Pricey.

About the Authors

Denise & Alan Fields are consumer advocates and best-selling authors. The Fields have authored 12 books with three million copies in print, including the best-selling guide to baby gear, Baby Bargains.

The Fields have been featured and quoted in the New York TimesWall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times.

As consumer products experts, the Fields have been guests on the NBC Today Show, Good Morning America and ABC’s 20/20.

How We Pick Products To Recommend

We often turn to our readers (3 million strong!) to find products to recommend. We ask our parent readers for their favorites and consider their real-world experiences in our recommendations.

When we test a product, we always purchase it with our own monies. We do not take free samples, as we believe that compromises our independence.

We also fact check manufacturer information with our own measurements. If a maker claims a product weighs X pounds, we will weigh it to make sure. If the battery life is supposed to be six hours, we will see how it stands up in the real world.

In some cases, we will do interviews with experts in the field to get additional feedback on products.

To get hands-on time with products, we regularly meet one-on-one with gear companies and even tour manufacturing facilities. (When we do this, we pay our own travel expenses).

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do extensive research, evaluating products with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability.

We make our living from affiliate commissions, but we always recommend what we think are the best bets for our readers (not the ones that are the most expensive). We are always looking for products that offer the best bang for the buck.

Our independence is a key reason why we have been doing this so long. As we mentioned above, when we purchase a product for hands-on testing, we do so with our own money.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100% reader-supported!

Baby Bargains: Your Baby Registry Cheat Sheet is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to and its related sites. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.