Build a Cheap Mini Cold Smoker With a Coffee Maker

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About: My name is Carlos Zoido and I'm an Industrial Engineer living in Madrid. I love design, art, music and computers...

Cold smoking is great to infuse food with wood smoke flavour. It differs from hot smoking in that food is not heated by the fire that produces the smoke. Just a couple of minutes of smoking can change dramatically the flavour of sauces, fish, meat, vegetables... You can experiment with different kinds of woods or adding extra components such as star anise or different aromatics.

The motivation for this project was creating a tiny cold smoker so that you can have it in your apartment made from easy to find materials.

Detailed video tutorial can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TmnFGoQa1zA

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Step 1: Bill of Materials

You'll need:

  • Coffee maker (moka style)
  • Plastic container
  • Aquarium air pump
  • Silicone tubing. One little piece that is bigger than the long tubing so that it can fit inside.
  • Pneumatic air fitting to take the air inside the coffee maker
  • Cable gland to take the smoke inside the plastic container

Step 2: Modify the Coffee Maker

The first thing is removing the coffee maker valve and substitute it with the pneumatic fitting so we can put air inside the coffee maker.

Later cut a piece of the coffee funnel (the piece where the coffee should be put) so that air can pass through easier.

Remove the lid and the filter from the coffee maker

Step 3: Make Connections

Connect the silicone tubing from the coffee maker to the plastic container.

Step 4: Load the Smoker With Wood Chips and Smoke!

Put some wood chips on the coffee funnel, burn them, wait for a couple of minutes and begin smoking!

This kind of smoker is great for smoking sauces, like BBQ sauce or mayonnaise but you can also give a touch of smoke to already cooked vegetables, fish or meat.

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    12 Discussions

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    AndrewL5

    1 year ago

    How hot does the coffee pot get? Also, how do you stop smoke from escaping the box? I would expect pressure to build with the pump forcing the air only one way. I thought about a similar project for cheese, but the cheese would need a couple of hours, and I thought the lid of the box would leak, or pop.

    2 replies
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    mrgalletaAndrewL5

    Reply 1 year ago

    The coffee pot gets hot but not a point that you can't touch eat, maybe 70-80ºC. If you need to smoke something for longer than 25 minutes you should use a bigger pot that mine, the one I use can only carry the amount of wood chips to stay smoking for that amount of time more or less (It´s the smallest coffee maker I found).

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    MaklaBmrgalleta

    Reply 8 months ago

    I wonder if you filled the box up with smoke for a few minutes and left it sealed for a couple of hours, what would the smoked cheese be like instead of a constant infusion of smoke for a couple of hours?

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    MaklaB

    8 months ago

    Would the heat not melt the hose?

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    MaklaB

    8 months ago

    What size is the Pneumatic air fitting and how can I make sure the pump hose is the same size? Cheers.

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    MaklaB

    8 months ago

    Very impressive, thanks. One question, why do you need the smaller silicone tubing? Why not just connect the longer one? Cheers.

    1 reply
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    mrgalletaMaklaB

    Reply 8 months ago

    Hi, It's not essential at all, I used It because the small didn't fit in the coffee maker and that's what I had on hand. :)

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    triumphman

    1 year ago

    SO COOL (NO PUN INTENDED) ! I JUST HAPPENED TO HAVE EVERYTHING LAYING AROUND TO MAKE THIS. I can't wait to start smoking. I just happened to buy some salmon today. I tried to add some smoke flavor to it by smoldering a small thin sliver of Hickory wood. I punched holes into a small aluminum pie pan with a dent up in it. It just did not work.THIS IDEA IS AWESOME. THANK YOU ! Suumokinn !

    1 reply

    ONLY IF IT IS HICKORY, APPLE, MAPLE, CHERRY OR MESQUITE, WOOD .ANYTHING ELSE WOULD TASTE BAD. ESPECIALLY PINE. PINE HAS TOO MUCH PITCH IN IT !

    I think it would, but be cautious so that the wood you use does not contain any toxic elements such as MDF or any varnish or paint...