Best Smoker Thermometer

Deciding upon the best smoker thermometers is a daunting task because there are so many different companies making temperature thermometers. Our favorite smoker thermometer is the ThermoWorks Signals because it was engineered to be used with smokers. It not only reads temperatures accurately, it also connects with WIFI, has a smart phone app, rechargeable battery, multiple probes and allows you to upgrade your smoker to digitally monitored cooking temps.

We broke this review down into five key categories. Best Overall, Most Affordable (but still quality), Best Bluetooth, Best Instant Read and lastly wire free thermometer. These categories are all relevant to those using a smoker for a long or short cook.

For this review, we only wanted to focus on thermometers that would prove helpful when using a Smoker such as temperature accuracy, durability, connectivity and any unique feature set that proves valuable to the smoking process.

IMAGE MODEL FEATURES
byb2-table__imageBest OverallBest OverallThermoWorks Signals
  • WIFI and Bluetooth
  • Four Probes
  • Smart Phone App
CHECK PRICE
byb2-table__imageBest Budget Best Budget ThermoPro TP-20
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Dual probes
  • Built in temp. settings
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byb2-table__imageBest BluetoothBest BluetoothWeber IGrill 2/3
  • Up to Four Probes
  • Smart Phone App
  • Affordable
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byb2-table__imageBest Instant ReadBest Instant ReadThermoWorks Thermapen ONE
  • One Second Readings
  • Most Accurate
  • Durable
CHECK PRICE
byb2-table__imageBest Wire FreeBest Wire FreeMeater Plus
  • Completely Wire Free
  • Very Accurate
  • Smart Phone App
CHECK PRICE


Best Wireless Meat Thermometer For Smoker

ThermoWorks Signals Review

Pros

  • Certified Precision Temperature Readings – the best in the market
  • Strong WIFI Range – never loses connectivity
  • 4 Temp Probes
  • Smart Phone App Control
  • Compatible with the ThermoWorks Billows temperature control fan (We will explain what Billows is)

Cons

  • Battery Life Inconsistent
  • Expensive

Signals is a premium wireless smoker thermometer from ThermoWorks which has four different channels for four temperature probes. Right off the bat, the ThermoWorks Signals smoker thermometer has built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi technology. Instead of a wireless receiver, you control the thermometer entirely through the dedicated ThermoWorks mobile application that is very easy to navigate and highly intuitive.

The thermometer can function just as well as a standalone leave-in unit controlled through its large backlit screen. Available in nine bright color options, Signals comes with three Pro-Series High Temp cooking probes and one Pro-Series High Temp air probe along with eight brightly colored silicone probe rings to help determine which probe goes into which channel.

Thermoworks Signals App Display
ThermoWorks Signals App Home Page
Thermoworks Signals Graph Display
Graph Displays of Probes

Signals offers a wide temperature range of -58 to 572 degrees Fahrenheit with a max cable temperature of 700 degrees Fahrenheit. It is one of the most accurate thermometers in this price range, with a maximum discrepancy of 5.5 degrees Fahrenheit. The dimensions of the display are 1.88 H x 3.97 W inches and the unit has an IP66 Splash-Proof rating. It does stand up quite well to light rain but cannot survive being submerged in water. The plastic body is sturdy and the unit as a whole is easy to operate.

Thermoworks Signals Review
Unboxed
Thermoworks Signals Fit and Finish
Screen View

The battery of the ThermoWorks Signals lasts up to 16 hours and can be charged with the 12V US adapter and USB-C cable that comes with it. The charging time is on the higher side, sometimes taking up to 13 hours to fully charge. I typically leave my Signals plugged in the entire time and try not to rely on the battery for long cooks.

The ThermoWorks Signals is by far the best thermometer for smokers because of the multi-probes, WIFI and Bluetooth connectivity, precision temperature measurements, friendly mobile app, and add on systems like the Billows fan controller.

I use my Signals every time I make brisket or do a in depth grill review. I like to test smokers or grills to see how accurately and consistently they can hold a set temperature. I have to say I’m quite shocked with what I find. A couple recent pellet grill reviews confirmed that hitting a specified temperature and holding to it is very difficult for some pellet grills. I used the Signals on my Traeger Ironwood 650 Review and Camp Chef SG 24 review.

ThermoWorks Billows Fan Control Overview

What makes the Signals system even more desirable is the compatibility with their Billows system. The ThermoWorks Billows is an electrically powered fan attachment that allows you to digitally control any smoker. The Billows can be connected to the Signals system and you then will be able to set desired temps on smokers that do not have this capability. Smokers like Weber Kettles, Big Green Egg’s, Kamado Joes, Weber Smokey Mountains etc.

The Billows brings your analog smoker into the digital world quickly and makes them extremely consistent with their temps. A must have for any kettle or Kamado owner.

Read our Long Term Test Review of the Signals here.

Best Affordable Thermometer

ThermoPro TP20 Review

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Excellent accuracy
  • Automatic shut-off saves battery
  • Temperature presets and alarms make it easy to monitor temperature
  • Wireless connectivity
  • Free probe replacement guarantee

Cons

  • Dual probes can be slightly restrictive
  • Probes are not color-coded
  • Design and build quality has room for improvement
  • Receiver is somewhat bulky

ThermoPro is a renowned name in the smoker thermometer market and the TP20 makes it easy to understand why. The ThermoPro TP20 has achieved the optimal blend of durability, features, and affordability, making it a crowd favorite, especially among beginners. With fantastic accuracy and a very minute discrepancy of about 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit, this meat probe has a temperature range of -32 to 572 degrees Fahrenheit, though it can withstand as much as 712 degrees. The unit has two probes, each of 6.5 inches.

The TP20 is wireless and has an impressive remote range of 300 feet. The display is 1.5×1.3 inches and is backlit, making it easy to read the temperature. There is support for both count-up and countdown timers and you can also switch the unit of measurement between Fahrenheit and Celsius as per your convenience. There are a number of temperature presets for different cuts of meat, and you can also set your own temperature. The TP20 receiver also alerts you by flashing and beeping if the meat or grill temperature rises over your set temperature.

The leads of the TP20 are 40 inches long which is more than sufficient for large grills. They are made of a durable stainless steel mesh. The only problem with the leads is that they are not color-coded, which makes it a little difficult to identify which probe each is connected to. The build quality of this thermometer is quite sturdy, especially because of the protective rubber covering.

Best Bluetooth Thermometer

Weber iGrill II and III Review

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Easy to use
  • Great build quality and construction
  • Four probes allow for versatility
  • Fuel level detection in the iGrill III

Cons

  • Bluetooth range is somewhat limited
  • Somewhat expensive for just a Bluetooth system
Igrill2
iGrill II
igrill3
iGrill III

These mid-range meat probes offer the durability and reliability of Weber products while being quite affordable. Like the ThermoWorks Signals, the Weber iGrill II and iGrill III are both controlled through a dedicated iGrill app on your phone or tablet connected via Bluetooth. The app greatly enhances the functionality of both these thermometers. For example, it allows you to set a name for each of the probes.

Weber iGrill App
Weber iGrill II App
Weber iGrill II App Graphs
Temps Graphed by Probe

The iGrill II comes with two probes but has four probe channels in total, making it easy to simultaneously monitor the temperature of multiple cuts of meat and the grill temperature. There are two colored probe indicators that help distinguish between the two probes. The unit has a pretty large temperature range of -22 to 572 degrees Fahrenheit, with a maximum heat resistance capacity of 716 degrees. The iGrill II is not waterproof and its Bluetooth range is restricted to a distance of 150 feet. It comes with a pair of non-rechargeable AA batteries, offering a battery life of up to 200 hours.

The Weber iGrill III, unlike its predecessor, is only compatible with Weber’s Genesis II and Spirit II series of gas grills. It has the same temperature range and Bluetooth range as the iGrill II, but its probes are waterproof, as claimed by Weber. It also runs on three AA batteries, offering a slightly longer battery life of 250 hours. In terms of appearance, the only distinct difference between the iGrill II and the iGrill III is the lack of an LED screen in the latter. The iGrill III does have a magnetic fuel level sensor that indicates the level of propane remaining in your fuel tank.

Best Instant Read Thermometer

ThermoWorks Thermapen ONE Review

Pros

  • Extremely quick read time
  • Unparalleled accuracy
  • Smart design
  • Fantastic build quality
  • Long 5-year warranty period

Cons

  • Slightly expensive

While leave-in thermometers have all the bells and whistles to make grilling exciting, instant-read thermometers are straightforward and can give you an accurate reading in a matter of a second. ThermaWorks has taken the accuracy and speed of smoker thermometers to the next level with the Thermapen ONE which can give you a highly accurate reading with a meager 0.5-degree discrepancy.

ThermoWorks Instapen One Unboxing

The Thermapen ONE has a large temperature range of -58 to 572 degrees Fahrenheit. The reading response time of this thermometer is unmatched as it gives you the final reading in just one second. The probe is 4.3 inches long and the unit has a water resistance rating of IP67. The 1×1.54 inch LCD display rotates 360 degrees and has a bright orange backlight, making it easy to read even in the dark.

Like all ThermoWorks Thermapens, the Thermapen ONE comes with a certificate of calibration against laboratory standards which are traceable. This is your proof that you are receiving a meat thermometer that is extremely accurate. When you take a temp of your food, you can feel confident that you are getting a correct temperature reading.

The design of this smoker thermometer is smart, intuitive, and robust. The battery compartment can be easily accessed and also houses the buttons for user settings adjustments. Using these buttons, you can control display resolution, temperature scale, sleep settings, and so on.

Read our full review of the Thermapen ONE here.

Best Wire-Free Thermometer

Meater Plus Review

Pros

  • Extremely accurate
  • Shows time to completion
  • Truly wireless
  • Feature-rich app with food presets

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Probe is Bulky

If you are looking for a premium thermometer that provides reliable results while also allowing for convenient wire-free operation, the Meater Plus smart wireless thermometer can be a powerful ally. The design is completely wireless – the thermometer does away with the traditional base unit entirely and substitutes it with an app you can install on your phone.

The Meater Plus is made of stainless steel and comes with a wooden case that handles both storage and charging. Moreover, the case has a magnetic back that makes the unit easy to store and also helps extend the wireless range of the thermometer once it is in use. The thermometer has a depth marker which denotes the point to which it needs to be inserted into the food to get the internal temperature. The rest of the thermometer unit handles ambient temperature measurement and can tell you the exact internal temperature of your oven.

An excellent use case of the Meater Plus is with a rotisserie, where you can keep a firm handle on the temperature for the entire duration of the cook. The companion app provides excellent functionality, suggesting temperatures and cook times for different recipes and foods. It also makes allowances for temperatures riding after the completion of cooking and even displays the temperature while the food is resting.

You can customize the app settings and notifications in many different ways and even link the service with Alexa for voice control.

Why is an Accurate Smoker Thermometer Necessary?

Hygiene

Consuming meat that is raw or undercooked can lead to myriad health problems, from minor illnesses to major potentially life-threatening ailments like norovirus or Salmonella. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports approximately 48 million cases of foodborne illnesses every year. It is, therefore, strongly advised to thoroughly cook foods and gauge their internal temperature to ensure that they are cooked all the way through.

salmonella
Salmonella
E. coli
E. Coli

Undercooked meat is a common problem while grilling or smoking. Hence, using a meat thermometer during your BBQ sessions is imperative to make sure that the internal temperature of the meat is high enough to kill all harmful bacteria and leave you food that is delicious and safe to consume. For red meat, such as beef and pork, the ideal internal temperature would be 145 degrees Fahrenheit, while poultry, like turkey and chicken, should be cooked up to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Maintaining Consistent Temperatures

Most BBQ enthusiasts will understand the struggle of trying to maintain a steady temperature within the cooking chamber especially when cooking with a charcoal grill. If the temperature of your grill constantly fluctuates throughout the cooking process, you will most likely end up with tough meat rather than tender and juicy barbecued meat.

It is crucial to monitor the temperature of your grill frequently to ensure that it remains consistent. A meat probe makes this job infinitely easier, allowing you to prevent temperature swings or address them as soon as you see any fluctuation.

Unreliability of Built-In Thermometers

The dial thermometer that comes mounted on the lid or dome of your grill may, at first glance, seem like a useful addition. However, upon further inspection, you will come to realize that it is one of the most unreliable components of your grill. First, most, if not all, built-in grill thermometers have to be calibrated straight out of the box as they are of cheap construction and inaccurate by a long shot.

Built in BBQ thermometer
Built-in BBQ thermometer

Even when calibrated, the reading shown by built-in thermometers cannot be trusted due to the way they are positioned and a number of other variables. Being built into the dome of the smoker, the thermometer hangs over the main cooking area and displays the temperature of that specific area. The temperature of this area is significantly lower than that of the main cooking area and thus, is not an indicator of the temperature of your cooking chamber or your meat.

Different Types of Meat Probes

Analog

Analog meat probes have certain advantages over their digital counterparts, such as they do not require any power source to operate. However, they have several limitations and you typically need to spend a large sum to get an accurate analog thermometer. These units are typically permanently mounted on the door or cooking chamber of your smoker.

Analog thermometers

Digital

Digital thermometers have almost completely replaced analog ones since their advent. Like all things digital, they are much easier to use and have on offer a plethora of added features that can make grilling infinitely easier. One of their biggest advantages is that they do not have to be manually calibrated and are extremely easy to read as they generally have a backlit display. A lot of grill tool sets will include a thermometer which are typically of poor quality and will not provide accurate readings.

Thermapen Classic

Single Probe

As the name suggests, single probe smoker thermometers have a singular probe allowing you to monitor either the doneness of your meat or the temperature of the grill grates at a time.

Meat probe stuck in pork roast

Dual or Multi Probe

Dual or multi-probe smoker thermometers are the more practical alternative to single probe thermometers. They have two or more probes that enable you to simultaneously measure the internal temperature of multiple cuts of meat and the grill temperature. Multi-probe units cost slightly more than the single probe variety but provide remarkably greater value for money.

Thermoworks Signals Wifi Bluetooth Thermometer

How to Choose the Right Smoker Thermometer

There are a number of factors that you should consider when trying to choose the right smoker thermometer for your use case scenario. These include:

Type of thermometer:

As discussed in the previous section, there are several different varieties of smoker thermometers each of which are suited for a different use case. Choose a thermometer that best suits your requirements. We would recommend a digital wireless multi-probe thermometer as they are the most versatile for long and slow cooks.

Accuracy:

When grilling or smoking meat, even a few degrees more or less can make a world of difference in terms of texture and taste. Ensure that, instead of going for the first cheap option, you look carefully into different products across different price points and choose one that offers the most accurate readings.

Response time:

The amount of time your meat probe takes to display the reading is crucial. If its response/refresh time is too long, it will constantly have to adjust the reading according to the changing temperature of the grill. Hence, the response time of your probe should not exceed a maximum of 15 to 20 seconds.

Number of probes:

The number of probes a smoker thermometer has on offer is vital to its efficiency. Dual or multi-probe thermometers are much more efficient in comparison to single-probe units as the former allows for simultaneous monitoring of grate and meat temperature.

Temperature range:

We strongly advise getting a meat probe that has a long temperature range for maximum versatility. Even if you think you do not need it, get a meat probe that can withstand a temperature of 500 degrees Fahrenheit or more. This way, if you ever do end up cooking at that temperature, you will not have to get a brand-new thermometer.

Ease of use:

While digital smoker thermometers are generally rather easy to use, opt for a thermometer with an interface that you find simple to navigate and control.

Feature set:

Top-of-the-line digital meat probes are packed to the brim with countless useful features that can really enhance your grilling experience. However, if you do not want to spend as much, look for a probe with important features like wireless capability, an audible alert for high or low temperatures, a backlit screen, a timer, and so on.

Price:

It may be tempting to get a $10 meat probe and call it a day, but we would suggest treating this as an investment. A meat thermometer is one of the most important tools you can buy for quality barbecue. While you do not necessarily have to spend $300, decide on one that offers a fairly comprehensive feature set.

Warranty:

Look for smoker thermometers that provide a one-year warranty period at the very least.

How to Care for Your Smoker Thermometer

Like any other gadget, a smoker thermometer, too, requires proper care to ensure longevity. However, there are a few strict rules that you need to follow when tending to your meat probes.

Tips To Care For Your Smoker Thermometer

  • Turn off the thermometer completely after each use
  • Clean the probes of the thermometer with lukewarm water, damp cloth or sponge, and mild dish soap after each use
  • Sanitize the probes of the thermometer with alcohol swabs after every use or every other use

What to Avoid

  • Putting the probe in the dishwasher
  • Submerging the probe
  • Exceeding the temperature rating
  • Leaving the thermometer in direct sunlight or in the rain
  • Tangling the wires of the thermometer

Conclusion

While an extensive feature set that includes wireless capabilities, multiple probes, alerts, and app control can certainly simplify temperature monitoring, accuracy, and reading time are the two decisive factors that determine how good a smoker thermometer really is. We reviewed some of the top smoker thermometers across multiple price points and, while they were all feature-rich and efficient, they fell short when it came to speed and accuracy.

The ThermoWorks Signals is at the very top of our list because its the one unit that could do everything you need to ensure a successful smoker outcome. While the price is on the higher side, getting perfectly smoked tender and juicy meat each time makes it well worth it.

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