July 30, 2020

The comparison between SmokinTex and Cookshack has spurred heated discussions among grilling enthusiasts that have been ongoing for years. But while they’re both great brands that produce well-designed smokers, our tests reveal that one is better than the other—read on to find out which.

Cookshack

Cookshack was first started by Gene and Judy Ellis in the early 1960s, so it has been around for decades now. Like the normal American, Gene loved barbecue, and he wanted to invent something that could let him make it better. 

Since Gene was an inventor, he collaborated with Judy and made some developments until they finally introduced Cookshack to the market. In 2004, the company partnered with Fast Eddy’s BBQ and produced large pit smokers for residential or commercial use. The PG1000 was among the first designs produced out of this collaboration.

Today, Cookshack has been in the industry for over 50 years, continuing its manufacturing operations in Poca City, Oklahoma. That’s actually one of Cookshack’s advantages over SmokinTex—being made in the USA. SmokinTex products are manufactured in China.

Although this doesn’t mean that SmokinTex smokers aren’t any good, many of us think that American-made products are better in several ways. It pays our fellow Americans, so it’s like keeping the money at home.

flatlay photo of plate with grilled meat and sauce

SmokinTex

Smokin Tex has been around for years as well, having been introduced by barbecue restaurateur Jim Smith. It was founded in 1999 in Dallas, Texas, but eventually moved its manufacturing to China, as mentioned. 

Jim Smith, the owner of Smokin Tex, was actually a former distributor of Cookshack. Because of this many are accusing him of copying Cookshack’s design, especially considering the fact that the Smokette is a Cookshack original. 

Nevertheless, Smokin Tex produces a great lineup of smokers and BBQ accessories that many people love. However, some factors make Cookshack the better choice between the two.

First, Smokin Tex lacks variety. Cookshack offers a wide range of products, from smokers to pellet grills to electric smoker ovens. Smokin Tex, on the other hand, focuses on smokers and the parts needed for repairs or replacements. 

Second is the construction. We’ll compare two products here for reference—the Cookshack SM008 and the Smokin Tex ST1300. The former has a powder-coated finish, while the latter has a painted one. In this aspect, Cookshack gains a point due to a durability advantage. 

The third is the function. Two of the features unique to Cookshack are the higher max temperature and the convenient digital controller, things that Smokin Tex products don’t have.

And finally, customer service. Cookshack is known for having incredible customer service. They respond fast and they address your concern with genuine care. That’s something that Smokin Tex doesn’t provide, as their customer service is slow to respond.

Overall, it’s clear who the winner is: Cookshack. And now that that’s out of the way, here are some of the best Cookshack smokers we’ve cooked with.

We also compared other brands such as Memphis and Traeger, which you can read next.

Top 3 Cookshack Smokers


1. Cookshack Fast Eddys FEC100 45" Stainless Steel Pellet Smoker Oven - Best Overall

 Cookshack Fast Eddys FEC100


From its certifications and achievements alone, the FEC100 already proves that it’s one of the best. It’s NSF and USDA approved, as well as Warnock Hersey and ETL Listed. Furthermore, this smoker oven has won dozens of competitions for hundreds of BBQ competition pros.

Whether you’ll be using this in your backyard or for cook-offs, it will produce consistent results every time. But don’t let all the accolades intimidate you, this pellet smoker oven is fairly easy to use while packing in tons of great features. 

Some of the greatest assets of this smoker oven include the IQ5 electronic time and temperature controller, 850°F Spin-Glas™ insulation, solid stainless steel construction, cook and rest feature, and easy flip-switch operation.

All these functions ensure superior heat retention, fuel savings, reliable performance, and maximum durability to give you essentially everything you need in a smoker. Overall, it’s an excellent add-on to any cookout [1]. 

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2. Cookshack Fast Eddy's PG500 56" Stainless Steel Pellet Grill and Smoker in One - Best Hybrid

Cookshack Fast Eddy's PG500 


If you can’t decide between a smoker and a pellet grill, the PG500 gives you both. This is indeed a versatile unit that allows you to grill and smoke so you don’t have to buy one of each. 

One of the unique features in this series is its charbroiler technology, which produces the same results and flavor that you would get from high-grade charbroilers. Cookshack is actually the only brand that has this kind of technology in their units, so that’s a decided advantage there.

Now, you might think that this will be much harder to clean since pellet grills make a lot of ash. Cookshack has solved that problem too, thanks to the front-access ash drawer. 

On the whole, it performed well up to expectations. The cooking space was spacious and the food-grade pellets really bring out that nice, wood smoke flavor.

We reviewed the PG500 further here.

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3. Cookshack Fast Eddys FEC300 49" Stainless Steel Rotisserie Pellet Smoker Oven - Best for Commercial Use

Cookshack Fast Eddys FEC300 


Smokers for commercial use need to be tough for heavy-duty operations. The Cookshack Fast Eddys FEC300 easily handles this task with its construction and set of features.

This smoker has a stainless steel interior and exterior, making it stronger than the black carbon steel used in other smokers. Also, it’s sealed so that no moisture can leak into the insulation, therefore eliminating any fire hazard.

With precise electronically-controlled heat, fast start-ups, 15-minute recovery times, self-closing doors, and a footswitch for easy rotisserie loading, this smoker maintains continuous heat for evenly-cooked food every time. 

And since it’s 100% wood-burning, you’ll get that authentic smoky flavor without any gas aftertaste you’d usually have from gas grills. Only the best food for customers, of course. 

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Conclusion

After hours of testing Cookshack’s smokers, we’ve experienced nothing but consistent results and reliable operations. All the models were equipped with the best technology and features that every enthusiast needs, whether it be for residential, commercial, or cook-off purposes.

With everything it brings to the table, Cookshack is definitely worth the price.

Want to see more Cookshack grills? We also tested the Smokette Elite—see what we found out!


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