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Smoking in Cooking with Cook and Hold Ovens

Did you know your CVap® oven could be used as a smoker? Adding an optional Winston Smoker Box to your oven lets you cook tender, juicy meats with the smoky flavor your customers crave. Incorporate smoking without the expense of adding another piece of equipment. Add a smoky hint to your beans, veggies, and even pickles. Try that with an immersion circulator!

This accessory is a must-have for barbeque establishments. It is suitable for CVap Cook and Hold Ovens and Retherm Ovens.

What is the Smoking Cooking Method?


The smoking cooking method involves the use of smoke to flavor, cook, or preserve food. This method is commonly used for meats but can also be applied to other foods like vegetables and cheeses. Smoking involves exposing food to smoke and heat simultaneously. Smoking ordinarily involves lower temperatures, between 180°F to 300°F (82°C to 149°C).

How Does Smoking Meat Work?

Here’s a basic overview of how smoking meat works:

Selecting Meat

Choose meats with higher fat content, as they absorb and retain the smoky flavors better. Popular choices include pork, beef, chicken, and fish.

smoking, smoker

Preparing the Meat

Trim excess fat from the meat to achieve better smoke penetration. Marinate or rub the meat with seasonings or a dry rub for added flavor.

Selecting Wood

The choice of wood is crucial as it contributes to the flavor. Typical woods include hickory, mesquite, apple, cherry, and oak. Each wood imparts a unique flavor profile. We recommend utilizing wood chips or pellets in the Winston Smoker Box.

smoker, smoking, smoker box

Setting Up the Smoker Box

The Winston Smoker Box is plug-and-play. Follow the directions for setting it up. Fill the box with the chips or pellets of your choice, and power up.

smoking, smoker, bbq

Smoking Process

Allow the meat to smoke for an extended period, usually several hours. The length of time depends on the type and size of the meat. An advantage to smoking in a CVap oven is that CVap’s heated vapor prevents the meat from overcooking or drying out.

Monitoring Temperature

Use a meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of the meat. Different meats have different recommended internal temperatures for safety and doneness.

smoking, smoker, bbq


Once the meat reaches the desired internal temperature, remove it from the oven and let it rest for a while. This allows the juices to be redistributed within the meat.

Tips for Great Smoking

  • Patience is key. Smoking is a slow cooking process that requires patience to achieve the best results.
  • Experiment with flavors: Try different wood types and seasoning blends to discover your preferred flavor profiles.
  • Safety first: Follow proper food safety guidelines, especially when dealing with low and slow cooking.
  • Remember that smoking meat is as much an art as it is a science, and practice and experimentation can help you refine your smoking skills over time.

Benefits of the Smoking Cooking Method

Flavor Enhancement

Smoking adds a unique, rich, smoky flavor to food that is difficult to achieve with other cooking methods.

Tenderizing Effect

Smoking can tenderize tough cuts of meat. The slow, low-temperature cooking process breaks down collagen in meats, resulting in a tender and juicy texture.


Historically, smoking was used as a method of preserving meat before the advent of refrigeration. The combination of low heat and smoke helps inhibit bacteria growth. It slows down the oxidation process, extending the shelf life of the food.

Enhanced Aesthetics

The visual appeal of smoked food’s distinctive color and crust can enhance the overall dining experience. Smoked meats often have an appealing caramelized exterior known as the smoke ring.

What Can You Smoke in a Cook and Hold Oven?

Things to Note

Once you’ve started using a CVap oven as a smoker, there’s no going back. The smoker will permeate your oven with the patina and aroma of smoke. This is fine if you’re a barbecue operation. But it is something to consider if smoked foods aren’t your primary product.

Although CVap ovens don’t usually require a vent hood, that isn’t the case if used as a smoker. Smoke will find its way out of the oven and into your kitchen. The oven must be under a vent hood to catch the smoke.

The Winston Smoker Box is only recommended for full-size ovens. The smoke can be a bit overwhelming when used in a half-size model.

One last thing – the smoker box requires its own 120V outlet. It is powered independently from the oven.

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