Updated: Feb 21, 2021
A quick guide to how I set up my Pro Q 3-in-1 BBQ Smoker for a cold weather cook.
In fairness how I light my Pro Q is how I light it in all conditions, fill your chimney to around two thirds of charcoal, this should provide enough heat to get your smoker quite quickly up to 300 F or 160 C. Use two firelighters, ignite and place the chimney over the light firelighters and give it around twenty minutes for the coals to get hot. Ensure the bottom vents are fully open to allow airflow into the chimney.
As you will see I have placed briquettes around the chimney, when the coal in the chimney is ready pour them out into the middle of the briquettes which will slowly light and maintain around 275 F or 140 C for about three hours in this cold weather. Ensure after you have poured the charcoal in that the briquettes touch the charcoal or they won't light.
Once the coal is in, close bottom vents half way and put both stacks onto the base BUT do not use the water pan, this is not required in cold weather and will prevent the smoker from reaching temperature. Leave the top vent fully open.
For the first hour of the cook I like to add a smoke flavour, this can be done by adding a wood chunks to the coals or as I have done for this cook I added oak chippings to a foil tray and placed the tray onto the side of the coals, this is easy in a Pro Q as there is a door the the coal chamber with a cool touch handle. These smoked for around 50 minutes, ideal.
After and hour and a half I bunched the coals up in the middle and added a few charcoal chunks to maintain heat. It was only 3 Celsius outside today with a chill factor of zero which does drain heat but the Pro Q lasted for two and a half hours of cooking heat, just long enough for the beef I had smoking.