There are many ways to prepare lamb. You can roast it, bake it, fry it, or grill it to name just a few. During the summer months, you may be thinking it would be a good idea to smoke your lamb instead. However, if you want to smoke your lamb, you will then have to decide which wood is best for smoking it.
The type of wood that is best for smoking lamb ultimately depends on how you would prefer to smoke it. However, there are several types of wood that you can choose from, including hickory, mesquite, and applewood.
Naturally, you are probably wondering which wood to choose when smoking lamb. You may be asking how much each option costs, and what are the differences between them. Read on to learn about the best wood for smoking lamb and the types of woods you can choose from.
The Best Wood for Smoking Lamb
Once you have decided you want to smoke your lamb, the first thing to think about is how you want it to taste. You will then once again want to consider a few different things as to the taste you want the lamb to have and what wood you want. To do this, you will decide whether you want your lamb to taste:
These are some of the most popular flavoring options that people choose from if they are going to smoke lamb. Each wood mentioned above contributes to different aspects of these flavors, but one type of wood is the best option. If you want an authentic, smoky flavor for your lamb, Hickory is the classic option although the others have distinctive tastes for you to consider as well.
The Different Types of Wood
There are lots and lots of different types of wood out there for you to use for smoking your lamb. Of course, you will want to narrow that list of wood down to what type of wood is most to your liking. In general, however, the three types of wood which are most recommended by experts are:
- Mesquite wood
- Hickory Wood
However, if you have some experience in barbecue, there may be a different kind of wood you would prefer for smoking your lamb. Other types of smoking wood include cherry, maple, oak, and pecan, among others. If one of these sounds like a good fit for your tastes then feel free to try one of these instead.
Mesquite is also a commonly used wood for smoking. Its flavor is even stronger than that of hickory and is also distinctly smoky. It is generally used for red meats like beef and pork but can be used for fish and poultry depending on your method of preparation. It is slightly more expensive than hickory with some 2 lbs bags going for $13 but is still easy to find and purchase.
Mesquite wood has a distinctive flavor that has made it popular at many specialty restaurants. One of the drawbacks of mesquite wood is that it is smokier than many other options. For that reason, people who are not huge fans of smoke or have limited ventilation options may choose to avoid it.
Apple wood is a fun option with a little bit more exciting of a flavor than hickory. If you smoke your lamb with apple wood, you will be giving it a bit of an apple flavor, although it will be significantly less dramatic than the other flavor options. This works great for meats with less powerful flavors. Lamb is a popular choice for applewood smokers.
One of the main drawbacks of applewood is actually a bonus of it as well: there is a less distinctively smokey flavor than many other woods. This wood imbues the meat with a mild and slightly sweet flavor. It does take a long time to prepare, and the end result is distinctive. Its price is roughly the same as mesquite with the most expensive bags selling for $14 for 2 lbs.
You have probably heard about hickory wood before because it is one of the most commonly used woods for smoking many types of meat. In addition to a versatile history, however, it is one of the woods that has been used the most for smoking lamb.
Hickory is one of the most popular woods to make almost any barbecue with. It is a strong and flavorful wood that gives the meat a uniquely smoky taste. It is also fairly cheap as a 2 lbs bag will cost no more than $7. Professional smokers say it works best with pork and similar meats. It is the number one choice for smoking lamb, especially if you are a beginner and do not want to be too creative with the flavors you are creating.
How Much Does Smoking Wood Cost?
The cost of smoking wood can depend on several factors. These include how much wood you will buy, the type of wood you plan on buying, and where you will be buying the wood from. In general however, smoking wood can run anywhere from $5 to $50 when buying online.
Hickory wood is a wood that has been used for thousands of years for campfires and cooking. Hickory trees are durable and grow easily in many climates, especially in the United States. These are some of the main reasons it became a staple wood for smoking and barbequing.
If you are using cost as a factor in determining which wood you will choose to smoke lamb, hickory will definitely be a strong option for you. It will also be easier for you to find than some of the specialty woods that you would have to custom order online or in a shop.
How to Season Hickory Smoked Lamb
One last thing to think about before deciding which wood is the best to use for your lamb, is what types of spices you plan on using. You may want to flavor it more like traditional American barbecue and use spices such as chili powder, black pepper, cinnamon, and others or maybe you want to use softer, less powerful spices.
Depending on what you prefer, you may want to use a softer wood to balance out powerful spices or use a stronger wood to empower less spice. By contrast, you may want to pair a powerful wood with stronger spice and a soft wood with soft spice. It ultimately depends on what you want to do.
One of the best aspects of using hickory wood is that you will have many flavor options. Because it has such a moderate flavor, there are many spices that go alongside it. You can perfectly tailor a hickory-smoked piece of lamb to fit the preferences of any meat-eater.
There are many things to consider before choosing which type of wood is right for smoking your lamb. As far as wood goes, there are many types to choose from, though there are a few specifically recommended by professionals. Most of these woods should be readily available at a relatively cheap price.
What is perhaps most important, however, is taking into account your own tastes and how you want the lamb to turn out. You can look around to see what the prices are and where the best store to buy from might be. Overall, choosing Hickory wood to smoke your lamb will allow you the most options to customize your meat while still being able to taste the smokiness that makes it worthwhile.