Best Vertical Pellet Smokers – 2021 Round-up

| Last Updated: January 10, 2022

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Looking for the best summer evening? Gather some family and friends, head out to your backyard, and host a BBQ party! All you need for that perfect day would be a vertical pellet smoker to get your day going. Don’t have one? Well, no need to worry. We can guide you in choosing the best vertical pellet smoker to ensure that you enjoy your day.

Comparison Chart of the Best Vertical Pellet Smokers

  • Able to hold up to 8 pounds of wood pellets
  • Grease tray allows for easier cleanup
  • Offers consistent cooking experience of 180˚F to 350˚F
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  • Digital LED for better temperature monitoring
  • Can be used for 24 hours straight
  • Cooking grids are porcelain-coated for heat retention
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  • Best for the Money
  • Equipped with meat probe thermometers
  • Allows presetting of smoke and cook cycles
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  • Best Pit Boss Vertical Pellet Smoker
  • Comes with 5 porcelain-coated cooking grids
  • Uses an auto-start igniter which has auto shut-off
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  • Best Louisiana Grills Vertical Pellet Smoker
  • Massive 2 059sq inches in total cooking space
  • Heavy-duty design to last much longer
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What is a Vertical Pellet Smoker?

In order to choose the best vertical pellet smoker for yourself, you need to first know what a vertical pellet smoker really is. It isn’t very hard to understand, and the name pretty much gives away what it really is. 

Vertical pellet smokers are basically smokers for your BBQ satisfaction, but with a slightly different design than the standard horizontal pellet smoker. These are designed vertically, allowing not only a greater amount of space for the users but also a great variation of all the items that you can cook in it.

Pros and Cons of Vertical Pellet Smokers

There are a great number of people who have switched to using the newer vertical pellet smoker. This is because of the great number of advantages that these products present with. But there are a few cons that are associated with it as well. Here are some of the pros and cons of these units so you can decide for yourself if a vertical pellet smoker is for you or not.


First, here are a few upsides of investing in a vertical pellet smoker:

Faster Cooking

In a vertical pellet smoker, the heat provided for cooking the food comes directly from under the food. It is proven that this method of cooking where the heat source is under the food is a lot more efficient at cooking the food. This allows you to cook your food a lot faster and to perfection as well.

More Cooking Space

Here’s the best part about vertical pellet smokers. These units are designed such that they are compact and occupy a lesser amount of space. But a vertical pellet smoker, which is the same size as a horizontal pellet smoker, will allow you to cook more food at once, as compared to its horizontal opponent. 

Temperature Control

Smokers are not the hardest appliances to use, but the only thing that can be very tricky about them is temperature control. It takes time and experience for users to master that. But with a vertical pellet smoker, you do not need to worry about that since it allows considerably easier temperature control as compared to other smokers.


Meanwhile, you will have to put up with the following limitations:

Not For Slow Cooking Meat

It is true that a vertical pellet smoker allows you to cook faster. And that is great, but not always. There are some types of meat, like pork, that are better cooked slowly, for the best taste. But that isn’t possible with a vertical pellet smoker. So it may not be ideal for all sorts of meat.

Willy's Top Picks - Best Vertical Pellet Smokers

Review of the Best Vertical Pellet Smokers

Now that you have the basis for making the decision to choose a vertical pellet smoker, it is time that you make up your mind to choose nothing less than the best. In order to help you avoid substandard products, here are some of the best vertical pellet smokers that you can invest in for yourself.

Best Overall:
Masterbuilt MB20250618 MWS 330B Pellet Smoker

Masterbuilt MB20250118 Pellet Smoker


  • Manufactured sufficiently to hold pellets up to 8 pounds or more without overloading
  • Designed with four smoking racks that are chrome coated for an extra mile of protection
  • Comes with probe thermometers that allow you to cook your meat to perfection every time
  • Made with a heat diffuser that allows even distribution of heat throughout the cooking space
  • Equipped with a digital panel to control the functioning of the smoker, making it easier to operate


  • Door may get a little too hot while working
  • Temperature on the unit may rise suddenly
  • Pellets may catch fire if not looked after well

What Recent Buyers Report

Users that have invested in this product claim that it has greatly improved their barbecue experience overall. It not only smokes and cooks the meat to absolute perfection but also allows them to do so with great ease. Moreover, its ideal capacity makes it absolutely perfect for a BBQ party.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Being the top product on this list, this unit is designed with the best of all features. But what we love more than anything else is its digital pan. This smartly engineered panel not only makes it easy for users to control the temperature but also provides them with sharp control. This allows the users to cook the meat to their liking.

Who Will Use This Most

This Masterbuilt smoker is one that has been highly appreciated by all of its users. From its ideal size to its perfect design, there is absolutely nothing that it lacks. Thus, we think that this is a unit that is designed for one and all. Be it a family day in the backyard or a BBQ party, it will serve to be the ideal product in all cases.

Bottom Line

Here is a product that you just can't say no to. No matter what it is that you are looking for in a vertical pellet heater, chances are this product has it for you. For this reason, we find this unit to be the best overall. It excels in all aspects, leaving there to be absolutely nothing to disappoint its users.

Pit Boss PBV3P1

PIT BOSS PBV3P1 Vertical Pellet Smoker, Copper


  • 40 pound or greater capacity allows you to cook as much meat as you want
  • Digital LED readout along with the meat probe so you can monitor internal temperatures
  • Auto-start function of the smoker works at just 300 watts with an auto shut off feature as well
  • Four coating racks of the unit are porcelain-coated that allow the ideal level of heating for the meat
  • Allows you to set the temperature according to your own requirement between the range of 150 and 450 degrees


  • Customer service is not up to the mark
  • Temperature control may be a little tricky for some users
  • Figuring the digital panel may not be as easy as other products

What Recent Buyers Report

Looking for a product that is user-approved? Then you are looking at the right product right here. It is one that has greatly impressed its users with all its high-end features and excellent functionality. Its design and performance such that that user have never experienced before in other products.

Why it Stands Out to Us

If you ask us what we love about this unit, the answer would be everything. It is that amazing. But there is one specific feature that makes it more special than the rest, and that is its 40-pound capacity. You will find very few units that allow a capacity as much as this unit does.

Who Will Use This Most

A 40-pound capacity is a great one. But of course, a small family can’t eat all that meat at once. But you know who can? All the people at the BBQ party! If you, too, are planning to hold such a party or planning a picnic in the park with BBQ and loads of friends, then this high capacity smoker is the one for you.

Bottom Line

Say goodbye to your worries about your smoker being too small for you. You no longer need to take several turns to cook all of the meat. With the outstanding capacity of this unit, you’ll be good to go. But that’s not all. There are a great number of other features that it has in store for you. You need to try for yourself and find out.

Best for the Money:
Masterbuilt MWS 140S Pellet Smoker

Masterbuilt MES 130S Digital Electric Smoker


  • Compact size allows you to save on space and allows easy placement of the product
  • Meat probe functionality ensures that your meat is always cooked right up to the mark
  • Allows the user to hold over 12 pounds of pellet that allow efficient cooking for a longer time
  • All the four racks on this product come with a chrome coating that keeps the unit protected
  • Users can preset not only the smoke but also the cook cycles that regulate the pellet smoking process


  • Unit may not last as long as users expect it to
  • May take a little time to heat up appropriately
  • Warranty terms of the product are a little complicated

What Recent Buyers Report

Users admit that they didn’t have many expectations from this unit, given its considerably low price point. They expected a substandard product with a substandard delivery. But to their surprise, it has a lot more to offer. Users were greatly stunned by how well and efficiently this product performed.

Why it Stands Out to Us

What is there not to love about this unit? It is designed to provide the best features that we all look for. But the absolute best that it provides the users with is the meat probe that it comes with. This probe is highly accurate and functional and ensures that you cook your meat to perfection.

Who Will Use This Most

Here is a product that ensures quality and functionality, and that too on a budget. If you have been looking for a unit that provides just the features that you want, but it doesn’t cost you much, then this product is the one for you. It will deliver all that you want without the high-end price tag.

Bottom Line

Ultimate satisfaction comes with the features that you want and a price tag that is suitable for you. That is exactly why users have been highly satisfied with this product here. It has the perfect design as well as functionality. And to top it off, it doesn’t even ask of you a great amount. It’s a win-win.

Best Pit Boss Vertical Pellet Smoker:
Pit Boss Grills 77550 5.5 Pellet Smoker

Pit Boss Grills 77550 5.5 Pellet Smoker, 850 sq inch, Copper


  • Can be safely used with great efficiency for over 24 hours
  • Auto start and auto shut-off igniter of this unit allows great convenience for the users
  • Digital controls allow you to ensure that you have a key hold over the temperature
  • Designed to be fully programmable for temperature ranges between 150 and 450 degrees
  • Keep a closer eye on the internal temperature of your meat using the meat probe that comes with this product


  • LED display may get a little dim with time
  • Heater may stop for short pauses in between cooking cycles
  • Users may notice significant temperature swings in between the cooking process

What Recent Buyers Report

Users that have tried this product for their own use will tell you about how well it works. It has greatly satisfied them not in any one but on all of its terms. It has a design that they feel is efficient and functionality that they find better than their previously used products. In their books, this product is definitely a good one.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Of all the outstanding features that this unit offers, there is one that strikes us more than any other, and that is the auto start and shut-off igniter. It allows the unit to function effortlessly, without you having to constantly keep a check on it. So you get the best of cooked meat and enjoy your own time.

Who Will Use This Most

If you are looking for a great BBQ day, without investing too much of your time on your smoker, then you need a product that can function smartly on the set temperatures. And for such needs, this item is perfect. It is designed for users who love BBQ the same way they love enjoying a day out.

Bottom Line

Get this Pit Boss unit, set the temperature, get the meat cooking, and have the best day out. All the convenience that you need is packed in this one product here. It is designed to ensure that you get the best of quality as well as design, and nothing less. You are just one product away from the best BBQ days. So, what are you waiting for?

Best Louisiana Grills Vertical Pellet Smoker:
Louisiana Grills Vertical Pellet Smoker

Louisiana Grills 65700-LGV7PC1, Stainless Steel


  • Also comes with a cover that keeps it safe while not in use
  • Designed from heavy-duty material that ensures the long life of the products
  • Wheels make it easier to move around while serving or placing during operation
  • Allows a stunning capacity of 60 pounds that cooks more meat than you would need
  • Comes with double-walled insulation that keeps the unit safe to touch from the outside


  • Wheels of the unit may turn tacky with time
  • Users may find some troubles with the customer service provided
  • Greater capacity may utilize a great amount of energy, which is not always needed

What Recent Buyers Report

Those that have invested in this product have always trusted Louisiana with its products. And they claim that their trust has been rewarded well with this product that provides them with the absolute best of all features. It not only works well but also allows great durability and convenience, making it their absolute favorite.

Why it Stands Out to Us

If we had to pick just one feature that we think makes this product worthy of being on this list, it would be its great size. 60 pounds is an outstanding capacity. Very few other products, if any, will provide you with this same capacity while maintaining the efficient functionality that this unit does.

Who Will Use This Most

Trying products from new brands and manufacturers is never a safe option. You may get what you asked for, or you may be entirely disappointed. So, at times, it is wiser to invest in products from known and trusted brands. If you are looking for a smoker that is designed by a trusted manufacturer, then this is the unit that you want to try.

Bottom Line

This unit may be the last product on this list, but it is in no way the least. All its high-end features and its exceptional performance are second to absolutely none. You can blindly trust Louisiana with the excellence that it provides with all its products, and does so with this one too.

Vertical Pellet Smoker vs Horizontal Pellet Smoker

While a lot of people have resorted to the vertical pellet smokers, there is still a great fraction of people that still prefer a horizontal pellet smoker. That is because both types come with their own unique perks that make the users want to keep using them. In case you don’t know, here is how they compare.


The basic difference between the two types, as the name implies, is their design. A vertical pellet smoker is designed vertically, and a horizontal one is horizontal, evidently.

In a horizontal unit, the heat source is present in another chamber entirely. Meanwhile, in a vertical type, the heat source is present right under the food being cooked.

Time Consumption

Since the heat source is in a different chamber, the horizontal type allows slow and more tasteful cooking. This is ideal for meat like pork, which needs to take its time to cook. A vertical unit, with its direct heat source, allows your meat to be cooked to perfection in absolutely no time.

PIT BOSS PBV3P1 Vertical Pellet Smoker for your tasy and flavorful meat.


Now that you have a complete overview of what a vertical pellet smoker is, what are some of the best products, and how these products compare to horizontal pellet smokers, you probably have a good idea of what kind of unit you need to invest in. All you need to do is look for features that match your requirements, and you’ll be good to go.

People Also Ask

We understand that there are still a few things that you might be curious about. In order to ensure that you make the best of your unit, you need to understand these units the best you can. To help you with that, here are a few questions that have been frequently asked by other users, answered just for you.

Are Vertical Pellet Smokers Any Good?

Whether these are good or not depends upon the use that you require from them. If you are looking for fast cooking with extra space, then they are absolutely for you. But if you want to slow-cook meat like pork on your pellet smoker, then a vertical pellet smoker may not be the best for you.

How Do Vertical Pellet Smokers Work?

If you understand how the standard horizontal pellet smokers work, then understanding the functioning of the vertical one is no big deal. These units are designed to function the same by providing heat from a heat source that could be charcoal, gas, or electric. This heat source is right under the food, which allows fast and efficient cooking.

Hey there, I’m Will, and I’ve been smoking and grilling for as long as I can remember. I made this blog to help others who are looking for honest and reliable info from someone they can trust. In my own efforts to try to perfect my smoking and grilling skills, I’ve done a lot of research and would like to have it compiled as a resource for others to use. Happy smoking!