camp chef and pro smoker pk100

  • PK100

    I took the opportunity to checkout some reviews and info online about the camp chef smoker that Jonathon mentioned in new products. Seems ok but the differences that stuck out to me is that the camp chef starts at 150 degrees. It does however go up to 350 degrees where the pk stopf at I think 250. The camp chef is not insolated and isn’t stainless steel where the pk is. The use of pellets seems to be easier that the extra fine wood chips and the wifi option on the camp chef is a great idea. Tottom line you have to decide if the camp chef or the pk 100 will meet your specific needs. I for 1 am more unsure as to what I really want to do. At a third of the price I just don’t know. I wish I were like Jonathon and could test both. I’ve been wanting the pk100 for as long as I have been shopping with Walton’s inc.

  • Regular Contributors

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  • Sous Vide Canning PK100 Team Blue Power User Regular Contributors Veteran

    I love my PK100 - Imparts incredible smokiness. I cant speak to the other.

  • Team Orange Walton's Employee Admin

    I can guarantee that the second we get the camp chef models in, Jonathon will be testing and getting a review video up. And, I’m sure he’ll be able to get a great side by side comparison of the camp chef vs the PK 100 put together. The camp chef will have an available “warming blanket” too to help with insulation during the cold months as well. I’m really excited to get them in and see how they compare!

  • Team Orange PK100 Sous Vide Power User

    I have the PK 100 and a Camp Chef Lux 36-inch pellet cooker (an older model without wi-fi). Both are excellent.

    The Camp Chef delivers a product that is very much like what you get from an offset stick burner, but you are correct that it doesn’t have a setting that you would want for processing sausage. It’s also a horizontal cooker, so you aren’t really able to hang links like you might want to do. You can work around the temperature limitations, sort of, by cracking the lid, but that is not very precise. It’s more of a cooker than a “smoker” at lower temperatures. Since the only real heat source is the pellet fuel, you’ll have smoke applied for the entirety of the cook. In cold or windy weather, I’ve just thrown a canvas tarp over the cooker, and that works fine for insulating. In hot weather, it really isn’t an issue.

    The PK 100 is more of a true “smoke house” in that it runs cooler and allows you to hang links. It also allows you to run heat without smoke, so you can better control how much smoke you apply. If you want a smoke ring, though, you will not get one with the PK100.

    So, they are both excellent, but they are different animals. There is some overlap, but one can do some things that the other cannot do. If you have to choose between them, you have to figure out what is more important to you.

  • PK100

    There seems to be a new camp chef that is a vertical smoker. I have read the replies and it seems to me like the pk100 is for me. I like the lower temperature. I will be making my own traditional cajun andouille if I ever get the process correct. Smoke sausage, andouille, snack sticks, ham, jerky and probably smoked chicken from time to time. I like being able to hang sausage and andouille and I also like the fact that the pk100 is what I would consider a premium smoker where the camp chef is considered an economy smoker. Since I can’t see, I much rather low and slow over get it done. That’s why cajun cooking lends itself perfectly to blind people. Chinese cooking as well as others is about cooking fast and usually the faster you cook the hotter the fire. Using an occational finger to check doness is forgiving if the temp is lower. Thanks to all, I do agree with Jonathon. THis is a great group of people. Everyone has been supportive and for that I am very greatful.

  • PK100

    TexLaw So since I’ve never seen, the smoke taste is there, just not the color?

  • Team Orange PK100 Sous Vide Power User

    no_eyes_processor Oh, yes. You get plenty of smoke flavor from the PK 100. In fact, you might even need to be a little careful about how much you get. A full bowl of sawdust delivers a good amount of flavor.

  • Team Blue

    The camp chef that I have will go from 160 to 500 it is a grill more than a smoke house but I love my camp chef I do jerky and other smoke meats in it all the time I live in central ny in the snow belt and I use mine all winter with the insulation blanket and it works just fine there really is no way I think you can compare the two because they are totally different animals

  • Team Blue Admin Walton's Employee Power User

    So, the vertical came in. I have done snack sticks on both (vertical easily better finished product) and I was overall pleased with the unit. It is not going to compare to a PK100 (as long as you dont have Phantom problem of it blowing up) but the ability to have a hopper full of pellets and just basically hit the start button is a pretty nice thing! I am going to do some side by sides with pork buts, ribs and wings and see which is better at all of them. Then, I will do something similar to the waltons grinder buying guide where I assume you want one and then go over which one to buy.

  • Team Blue Sous Vide PK Grills Green Mountain Grill Regular Contributors

    Jonathon what kind of smoke schedule did you run on it? With the lowest setti g being 150, I assume you ran that until you were at temp to move to sous vide?

  • Team Blue Admin Walton's Employee Power User

    Midwest_kc I didnt move these to sous vide as I wanted to test the unit more than make snack sticks. I started it off at a 1 smoke setting so that it would be as accurate as possible since we were already above where I would normally want to start at. Then, I moved it to a 5 when I was past my first hour of smoking at 150.

    One BIG thing I forget to mention was that on last Thursdays live stream someone in the comments reminded me that a cabinet full of cold snack sticks should take longer to get up to temp, so by putting them in first you will get some conditioning of the sticks on the way up to 150. Well, we had an error that caused a flame out around the 130 mark. This error was my fault, I had the side slider for the ash cup partly open and it was just dropping partially burnt or not burnt at all pellets down into the ash cup. Once I fixed that it worked fine.

    With that error it took about 70 minutes for it to get up to temp. Without it I would imagine it would have taken 50 or so minutes. So, starting at 150, as long as the cabinet is already full of cold meat isn’t a problem for Snack Sticks.

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