6

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Thoughts on Liquid Smoke

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 11, 2011 at 4:01 PM

Most beef jerky recipes I come across call for liquid smoke. Anyone have any thoughts on whether liquid smoke is safe to eat?

It seems to me that it might be a mild carcinogen, but probably not any more dangerous than grilling some meat.

Does anyone have any advice for what to look for in a brand? Any recommendations for a brand to use when marinating beef jerky?

Medium avatar

(10611)

on May 06, 2013
at 05:17 PM

PAH's don't form to any great degree in low temperature smoking.

Fb67dc30cead043d1d13ea503a3044dc

(3280)

on October 16, 2011
at 12:25 AM

Not ridiculous! I hear over and over that cook fires are carcinogenic, which makes me wonder about the capturing it, condensing it, and eating it.

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on September 12, 2011
at 01:17 AM

It's good, right!??! I should have bought that bottle of Lazy Kettle.. supposed to be really tasty.

Medium avatar

(5639)

on September 11, 2011
at 08:06 PM

Wright's is my go to, I like their hickory smoke alot. A little DEF goes a long way!

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on September 11, 2011
at 06:39 PM

A few years ago I contacted the two manufacturers that I know of because I do use this product and was concerned. It seemed to be just as Stephanie says. I came away satisfied with their answer at any rate. They use a distillation process so it is as "natural" as a flavoring can be I suppose. I actually think it's far safer than grilling meat assuming you are using it in an application where the meat is heated a bit more gently.

6b72eeb3f0c98b487f712efcb5092c90

(293)

on September 11, 2011
at 06:16 PM

Don't know anything about its safety, but if you want to know more about the ingredients in the liquid smoke you're using, Alton Brown has a recipe for making your own. Basically you're just condensing smoke from a fire.

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on September 11, 2011
at 05:35 PM

I also wonder about whether liquid smoke is safe. Luckily the bottle I picked up for 2$ had no other ingredients- just the "smoke" which is good. As for advice I do not really have any besides looking at the ingredients to make sure its just the smoke. I just made beef jerky! It turned out horribly saltly though. I used braggs liquid aminos (supposed to be better than soy sauce) and a few drops of liquid smoke and hot cock sauce. So just be careful! If I could have a do over I would dilute it with beef broth by a ton! Good luck. I can give you some advice on what not to do!

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6 Answers

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1
Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on September 11, 2011
at 07:36 PM

I looked at a couple and the two that are literally "smoke" only without any other additives are Lazy Kettle: smoke is captured and run thru distilled water, filtered, bottled. Smoke in a bottle, nothing else. Wrights: smoke is collected in a condenser, cooled until it forms water, droplets are captured/filtered twice, bottled.

Fail is Colgin: made and caught in a condensor but added vinegar, molasses, caramel color.

I've tried Lazy Kettle and Wrights - both are solid and you need just a teensy bit. It all depends on what you want to use it for.. if you're BBQ'ing outside then you can get smoke flavour just from cooking on the grill. If you're doing something inside and want a smokey flavour.. then a drop or two.

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on September 12, 2011
at 01:17 AM

It's good, right!??! I should have bought that bottle of Lazy Kettle.. supposed to be really tasty.

Medium avatar

(5639)

on September 11, 2011
at 08:06 PM

Wright's is my go to, I like their hickory smoke alot. A little DEF goes a long way!

1
38c12fbadd208c04b38faf91d4ddcb1a

on May 06, 2013
at 04:33 PM

I realize I am answering an older post, but wanted to give my input. I have used Wrights liquid Hickory smoke for the past 15 years. It is a regular staple in my home. I smoke salmon, ribs, add it to pulled pork, sloppy joes, homemade BBQ sauce.etc, etc...

I order it by the case online since I cannot find it in my local stores anymore.

It has no additives and is concentrated so a little goes a long way. It does not contain any carcinogens. Check them out on the manufacturers website. B&G Foods, Inc.

1
6ec8d30130a6fb274871314533b5536b

(581)

on September 14, 2011
at 09:22 AM

This is probably a stupid question, but... is the smoke itself healthy to ingest?

I mean, I know we eat smoke all the time through our cooked foods. But people are always saying how the burnt parts of foods are carcinogenic... so it makes me wonder if it's possible for smoke to be carcinogenic on some way?

Like... overly-smoked smoke.

Okay, I'm shaking my head and laughing at myself right now for how ridiculous that sounds... but really.

Any insight/information about this?

Fb67dc30cead043d1d13ea503a3044dc

(3280)

on October 16, 2011
at 12:25 AM

Not ridiculous! I hear over and over that cook fires are carcinogenic, which makes me wonder about the capturing it, condensing it, and eating it.

1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 11, 2011
at 11:09 PM

I use it and like it when I don't have time to really smoke something. I checked it out previously and the ingredients are water and the condensed smoke from wet hickory wood. In a pinch you can put some liquid smoke and water in a spray bottle and spray it directly on the rocks (if you use a gas grill) and it works fairly well. I usually use a smoker box filled with soaked mesquite or hickory inside the gas grill when I doing extensive things like smoking ribs for 6 hours.

0
Dc757b6b46b19225ec2b222e56d0eb95

on May 06, 2013
at 08:47 PM

Another consideration when smoking food is to use lump charcoal instead of briquettes is that briquettes are half saw dust and half remnant charcoal. The burnt charcoal contains the carcinogenic effects as charred meat. And...its tastier.

Liquid smoke tastes virtually the same as natural, I just prefer the hands on experience of smoked food.

0
62fafa8cb15af7c562fa8c270f7b6174

on May 06, 2013
at 05:13 PM

The mouth-watering smell of grilled meat can contain carcinogens HCA (heterocyclic amines) and PAH (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons).

There is a wikipedia article that cites a study showing the amount of those carcinogens in liquid smoke is minimal and can be reduced with the temperature the smoke was made at. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liquid_smoke.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on May 06, 2013
at 05:17 PM

PAH's don't form to any great degree in low temperature smoking.

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