Cooking brats on a pellet grill makes it possible to infuse a delicious flavor into this amazing German sausage. While smoking brats is one of the most straightforward tasks, you can make serious mistakes that will destroy the otherwise delicious meal if you are not careful.
To smoke delicious brats, you need to do the following;
- Preheat your grills to 225 degrees Fahrenheit
- Prepare your brats
- Smoke the brats for 60 minutes until they attain an internal temperature of 160 degrees F
- Finish the cooking by making sandwiches or use the brats for smoked nachos
A pellet grill allows you to infuse the smoky flavor into your sausages, making them even more delicious. Whether you are an expert in smoking sausages or this is your first time, there is a lot to learn to achieve the most delicious brats.
How To Smoke Brats On Pellet Grill
You do not have to struggle too much to smoke delicious brats because the process is straightforward. Moreover, using a pellet grill is an effective method of smoking brats. The following are the essential steps that you need to follow to prepare delicious brats.
1. Master How A Pellet Grill Works
If you have never used a pellet grill before, it would be prudent to start by ensuring that you know how it works so that you do not make costly mistakes.
A pellet grill burns hardwood pellets in a burn pot allowing warm air to circulate in the cooking chamber hence cooking the food on the grill through convection. The good thing with pellet grills I that they provide precise temperature control, and this makes them ideal for cooking food such as brats that require high-temperature control
Further, when using a pellet grill, you have an option to infuse your favorite smoke taste into brats. For instance, you can use wood pellets such as mesquite, pecan, apple, or hickory. It all depends on the flavor you want; in the end, you should have a savory or spicy taste.
2. Prepare The Brats
Once you know how a pellet grill works, you need to switch gears to prepare your brats and prepare them for the grill. While some people do not spend time preparing their brats, you need to understand that some preparation, such as marinating them overnight, can reduce the chances of the brats cracking during the grilling.
When it comes to marinades, you have a wide range of options, including beer, mustard, onions, pepper, and any other that you may consider appropriate. It is all about infusing the best flavor into your brats. Although you do not have to leave your brats overnight, you need to remember that the longer you marinate them, the better.
3. Pick The Best Wood Pellets
Picking the wood pellets is another critical step that you should treat seriously. Besides ensuring that you have enough pellets, you also need to ensure that they are of the right quality to be sure that you will get the best flavor.
When picking the pellets, avoid those that may have an overpowering aroma, as they might suppress the flavor of the marinades. The apple pellets can be the best option as they have a mild flavor that compliments most meats.
4. Prepare The Pellet Grill
Preparing your pellet grill entails setting it to the desired temperature of 225 degrees Fahrenheit. Besides setting the grill to the desired temperature, you also need to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for efficiently utilizing the grill.
Some manufacturers recommend opening the lid for minutes to help clear particles from the previous cooking. Nonetheless, keeping the lid close is one to speed up the preheating process.
5. Start Smoking By Putting Your Brats On The Cooking Grates
Once your temperature gauge reads 225 degrees Fahrenheit, you should place your brats in the grill and close the lid. Since the brats cook over indirect heat, you can add onions for extra flavor.
It is prudent to check the pellet hopper regularly to ensure that there are enough pellets to do the cooking. Further, you need to check how your brats are doing, even though you do not want to keep opening the grill, as this will allow a lot of smoke to escape.
Smoke the brats until they attain the internal meat temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit. That is the safe temperature to eat the brats.
Brats On Pellet Grill – Low And Slow Smoking
Smoking your brats using suitable wood pellets makes their skin turn reddish and becomes a bit tough to make a little crunchy.
Moreover, the low and slow cooking of brats on a pellet grill is advantageous as you are not likely to overcook your brats. If you get distracted and cook your brats for an extra minute, you will have nothing to worry about because the impact won’t be destructive.
What Temperature Do You Cook Brats On A Pellet Grill?
The best temperature to cook your brats on a pellet grill is 225 degrees Fahrenheit. The magic with this temperature is that you will not spend all your time trying to cook your brats. You only need to cook them for about an hour, and they will be ready.
Additionally, when smoking your brats at this temperature, there is no risk of overcooking your brats, even if you are distracted for a few minutes.
Internal Temp For Brats
Many people experience challenges when cooking brats by being unable to determine how long to cook them to perfection.
The USDA recommends cooking bratwurst until they attain an internal temperature of 160 degrees. The brats are safe to eat at this temperature without worrying about any safety concerns. When checking the internal temperature of your brats, you should use a digital meat thermometer.
How To Tell Your Brats Are Done Without A Meat Thermometer
While it is prudent to have a meat thermometer when cooking brats, some situations may deny you the opportunity to use the meat thermometer. Fortunately, several ways can help determine the doneness of your brats.
The Touch Method
The touch method is one of the common methods used by those who have a good experience with smoking brats. To utilize this method, lightly press your fingertip on the brat and take note of the texture. If the brat is firm and springs back, that indicates that it is done. You may need to cook it a little longer if it feels jiggly.
The Wiggle Method
The wiggle method entails using a pair of tongs to hold the brat and wiggle up and down to see how it acts. If it is firm and bouncy, that means that it is cooked.
The Cake Tester Method
The cake test method requires that you make use of the cake tester. All you need to do is insert the tester in the brat. Once that is done, remove it and place it on your wrist; if it is hot, it’s done. However, if it is warm or cold, you might need to cook it a little longer before testing it again.
How Long To Grill Brats
The duration you will grill your brats depends on the temperature at which you will set your grill. Here is a breakdown of how long to grill brats, depending on the temperature you set.
- Smoking at 180 degrees Fahrenheit – Cook the brats for about 3 hours before increasing the temperature to 225 degrees Fahrenheit and cook for another 30 minutes
- Smoking at 250 degrees Fahrenheit – When you set your grill at this temperature, you will need to cook your brats for about 1 hour.
- Smoking at 250 degrees Fahrenheit – when the grill is at this temperature, you will need to smoke the brats for 45 – 60 minutes.
A perfectly cooked brat will be fulfilling, and this is why you do not need to rush the process. Set your grill at 225 degrees Fahrenheit and pick the proper pellet wood, the apple wood. Cook your brats low and slow, and you will enjoy their delicious flavor.
Scot has loved smoking food in his free time for the last few years. Each major holiday or off-weekend, Scot spends days testing and prepping new recipes for perfection.