HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Brewing beer, curing meat, or making cheese? Get great advice
TELL US

Liquid smoke

luckyfatima Oct 8, 2009 11:07 PM

Some one gave me a bottle of this stuff and I have never used it before. How can I use it. What portion of it per lbs of meat? Does it have an undertaste that I should be wary of?

I searched the boards and the only recent reference to it was in the "Never again. Never" thread, one of the items never to use again.

Is it gross? Should I not use it?

  1. n
    normalheightsfoodie Oct 9, 2009 12:23 PM

    I have used liquid smoke as a marinade for tri-tip, it gives it a nice flavor.

    1. grampart Oct 9, 2009 11:38 AM

      I just read this on SeriousEats.com

      http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

      1. TroyTempest Oct 9, 2009 11:31 AM

        i have a vegetarian kid, so i can't use ham hocks when making a pot of beans. So, for that i add a little. Once again, use a light hand, not even a teaspoon in a pot of beans.

        1. s
          sedimental Oct 9, 2009 10:09 AM

          I make "wine burgers" for the grill. Ground meat, a "dab" of liquid smoke...and some nice strong Cabernet all mixed together. Grill. Smokey, wine-y beef.....Yum! Add some Blue cheese to the top!

          1. jeniyo Oct 9, 2009 08:36 AM

            i got this for making beef jerky. but haven't tried anything beyond this.

            1. l
              LauraGrace Oct 9, 2009 08:31 AM

              We always put it in baked beans when I was growing up. Everybody is right about a LIGHT HAND -- we used 5 or 6 drops for a dutch oven FULL of beans.

              I find it especially useful when making vegetarian versions of dishes that would otherwise have smoked ham hocks or bacon as a flavoring agent.

              1. alanbarnes Oct 9, 2009 08:18 AM

                The flavor of liquid smoke is like the smell of perfume - it should be discovered, not announced. If the food you cook with it tastes smoky, you've added too much. But a drop or two can bring complexity and depth to a pot of baked beans or a hunk of kalua pig.

                1. shaogo Oct 9, 2009 08:17 AM

                  I'm also of the "gotta be the real thing or nothing at all" frame of mind. I've never been able to appreciate the taste of liquid smoke, regardless of how little was used or what was in it. I've only tasted it when used by other chefs.

                  Liquid smoke is also one of the only "additives" that I hesitate to use (I use nitrites when making charcuterie and MSG occasionally in Asian dishes so I'm not vehemently no-additives like some posters on 'hound.)

                  1. s
                    silverhawk Oct 9, 2009 08:08 AM

                    i think of liquid smoke as "tincture of soot" and avoid it. i think it offers an acrid taste--even if used sparingly. in my view, smoke is earned, not dribbled in.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: silverhawk
                      Uncle Bob Oct 9, 2009 11:12 AM

                      Don't sell liquid smoke to short Silverhawk...I have it on good authority from people in position to know, that It makes an excellent dog/sheep dip...In fact it is my learned opinion that anybody who likes the stuff has Sheepherder in their geneology :)

                    2. todao Oct 9, 2009 08:02 AM

                      Liquid smoke is simply a collection of smoke (from a smoker of course) in water vapor that is condensed and bottled. If there's anything in the ingredients list on the label I don't use it. But I do use the purest varieties and find them to be a terrific addition to many of my culinary creations.
                      However, as "Journey" pointed out, IT MUST BE USED WITH A LIGHT HAND. Too much of a good thing is not a good thing. IMO, those who have found it to be a problem are either using products that contain additives or are using too much. It is, after all, a flavoring ingredient and not the main ingredient in the dish.

                      1. scuzzo Oct 9, 2009 08:00 AM

                        It's not gross. It's actual distilled smoke. But do use it very sparingly. I put mine into a bottle with an eye dropper. Sometimes I add just a few drops to scrambled eggs.

                        1. JEN10 Oct 9, 2009 06:12 AM

                          i get hives from the stuff.

                          1. j
                            Journey Oct 9, 2009 04:15 AM

                            I love Liquid Smoke, but it must be used with a light hand.

                            I use it in 2 recipes. One is a steak marinade: combine Liquid Smoke, vegi oil, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and freshly ground black pepper. Adjust quanties of all to your taste and number of steaks, but only use about a capfull of the Smoke for every two steaks. You can then adjust the amount from there.

                            Another recipe is one I got from Disney World in Orlando. Google "Boatwrights Dining Hall ranch dressing". It's quite nice.

                            1. ipsedixit Oct 8, 2009 11:21 PM

                              You can use it on alot of things, e.g. beans, chili, stews, gravy, bbq, pulled pork, etc.

                              Just be judicious with it as it has a rather strong and unpleasant flavor when too much is used. A little bit can add a nice dimension (and provide a shortcut to achieving that "smoker" effect), but overdo it and it becomes obvious that you are cheating to get that "smokiness" effecxt.

                              Show Hidden Posts