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My Husband Got a Traeger, and I Love His New Hobby!

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traeger smoker with ribs on the front shelf

Curious about Traeger smokers?

Since it’s close to Father’s Day and it’s prime grilling season, today I’m sharing one of my husband’s favorite gifts – his Traeger Renegade Pro!

“I love cooking with my Traeger! IT IS AMAZING! I love the Pro Series since it has built in temperature probes and a hatch to change out the wood pellets. The Traeger makes life a lot easier to get excellent, consistent results with limited effort. An added bonus is that you can grill, bake, and smoke, all with the same grill!” – Lina’s husband Joel.

We purchased a Traeger Renegade Pro (a popular brand of wood pellet electric smokers) about 5 months ago, and we’ve really been enjoying it! And by “we”, I mostly mean my husband, as he’s been enjoying this new hobby of trying every type of meat, creating seasoning blends, and essentially taking over the cooking responsibilities on the weekends.

sticking a meat thermometer in a tbone steak

This means less cooking, and I’m all about supporting this delicious passion for smoking – especially as our family gets to enjoy the benefits that have come from it! We grill year round living in Arizona. With yummy hardwood infused BBQ meals, our Traeger has taken this activity to the next level!

traeger smoker in the backyard

Grilling vs. Smoking

Typical propane and charcoal grills apply direct heat to the food through the heated grates to cook food faster. Smokers use burning wood and indirect heat so you cook at lower temps for a longer period of time. This infuses a mouth-watering wood smoked taste that’s different from a gas grill.

Win-Win: The Traeger is a grill and a smoker! We often set it to a higher temp to “grill” foods – anything from smoke (180 degrees) to 450 degrees.

traeger smoker pellets in the hopper

Pellet Smokers vs. Propane Smokers

Traeger is a high-quality pellet smoker and grill that cooks using small wooden pellets fed through a side hopper. Operation requires an electric outlet. Just pour in the wood pellets and set your digital temperature. Aside from checking in every 60 minutes or so to make sure all is good, it’s pretty hands-off.

We started out learning to smoke meat with an entry level propane smoker that uses wood chips to infuse wood flavor. It works fine, but it was a hassle to constantly feed wood chips to, there were flare-up temperature spikes, and it was tricky to maintain even temperatures. We once ran out of propane mid-smoke, and that was a bummer, too.

opening the lid of the Traeger smoker in backyard

Why we love our Traeger:

  • Precise temperature for even cooking (and no flare-ups). This yields a higher quality, consistent result.
  • Ease of use. Using a self-feeding pellet smoker is definitely the way to go as far as setting the temp and letting the smoker do its thing. It’s sort of like using an oven!
  • Easy to clean. To make it even easier, we buy the drip pan liners. Cleaning up the ash is easy to do using a shop vac or a handheld vacuum.
  • It’s good looking! I know this may seem unimportant, but the design is actually similar to a gas grill and not an eyesore like some smokers. 🙂
  • Excellent customer service. Traeger is known for its awesome customer service, and the smoker/grill comes with a 3-year warranty.

smoked wings, ribs, and pork belly from the Traeger Smoker

Some of the AMAZING meals we’ve prepared using our Traeger:

  • Smoked chicken wings are crazy yum! Seriously, if you’re a wing fan, you’ve gotta try them!
  • Smoked ribs, both beef and pork. Always a delicious choice. A mustard and spice rub is YUM.
  • Smoked pork belly with honey BBQ are like tiny bites of heaven! Get the recipe from TraegerGrills.com.
  • Brisket takes all day to smoke, but it’s so tasty if you have the time! It’s our special occasion go-to meal.
  • We smoked a thick t-bone steak last night for dinner, and it was DELISH (pictured below).

cutting up tbone steak from the traeger smoker

Cooking & Support Hip Tips:

  • TraegerGrills.com has a huge selection of delicious recipes on their site, and we usually search there first for inspiration.
  • There’s also a large Traeger Owners Facebook group page with an incredibly inspiring community of folks sharing recipes and helpful advice.

traeger fold down shelf and extra interior rack for the renegade pro series

Traeger accessories worth considering:

traeger grills at home depot

We are definitely happy with our Traeger investment!

We are foodies, and we enjoy being at home and in our backyard, so this is a perfect hobby for us!


Organize BBQ tools with this DIY sign for dad


Lina has 8+ years' experience in content creation across lifestyle, decor, recipes & DIY. She has a Bachelors in Business Management. Connect with Lina on LinkedIn


Join The Discussion

Comments 48

  1. Pam

    My husband’s all-time favorite gift from me is his Traeger grill. A few years ago when gold prices were high I gathered my unwanted jewelry and a signet ring my husband had found in a parking lot and sold them to a gold dealer. I made a little over $1,000 and enough to buy his grill. They’re not cheap but should last a lifetime. I LOVE it when he cooks! And, he enjoys showing off! We’re going to smoke a pork butt soon and have out-of-town relatives over to enjoy.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Wow- that is a special gift! I agree it’s a neat hobby. That sounds awesome, and we look forward to entertaining with ours too! <3 Thanks for sharing Pam!

    • K80

      What an absolutely wonderful person you are. That story just melted my heart. The goofy grin on ur hubbys face every stinkin time he uses it must make you sooo happy. Thank you for honestly making my day with such a sweet story. Not sure why it pulled my heart like it did but…💙

      • Pam

        Aw. You’re so sweet to say so. Thanks!

  2. Julie

    My husband would like a new smoker—and I am considering getting him one for fathers day. But wow, this is definitely out of my price range.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Hi Julie my parents have the entry level unit that’s about have the cost and love theirs, so it’s a range. There are also other brands of pellet smokers you could research, and check Costco too.

  3. K

    So can the grill/smoker model run off of either propane or pellets?

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      No this uses pellets and you plug it into to power. No propane.

  4. Laura

    We bought ours from Costco a few years ago, we absolutely love it! It may have been $1,000 but it’s been so worth it!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      That’s great to hear Laura!

  5. Alicia

    My husband got a Pit Boss pellet smoker which is much less and loves it.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing Alicia!

    • Kim

      We also have a pit boss and we’re able to get the pro series, xl model for less than the price of a small Treager. We love our smoker

  6. Denise

    My husband got a treager a few years ago and at first I wasn’t too on board just because they aren’t cheap but now will say I love when he smokes meat. He absolutely loves it and the food tastes absolutely amazing. We love getting the cowboy pizza from Papa Murphy’s in my opinion pizza on the treager is the best it has the best crust, we will put a pork butt in overnight and it’s ready in the morning for pulled pork sandwiches. Also I should add that food is just cooked from the heat of the smoke and contained no oils making food that much healthier. We also smoke chicken breasts and put them on our salads, money well spent!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      YUM!! I keep seeing people post on the Traeger fb group about smoking the P/M pizza! so smart, and we want to try! 🙂 Thanks for sharing Denise!

  7. Rebecca

    I absolutely love my traeger. My husband bought me one for my birthday last year. We got a good deal on it. Just a heads up, if you buy it from Home Depot, watch the price for the next 30 days (I believe it is 30, might be more). We bought it on sale, but then they had another sale and the price went down $160. Went in with my receipt and they refunded the money. Home Depot is awesome about this. They have refunded us on the traeger, fridge and washer with their price guarantee. I am probably smoking something every week now.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Wow such great advice Rebecca! Thanks!

  8. Jsturner1

    We got a Trager a few years ago. We started using it 4-5 times a week and love it! Our Trager started having issues and we actually replaced it with Camp Chef. We love the lumberjack pellets. We cook pizzas, Tri tip, bacon, shrimp, veggies, turkeys, steak, chicken and more! We love it!!!!!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      That’s so great! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Abby S

    I’m sure the Tragers are great– but so too are the Pit Boss grills. We bought ours at Lowes (or maybe it was Walmart) for a *fraction* of the name-brand’s price. It’s so easy to use, I do a good bit of grilling myself these days!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Perfect! Thanks for sharing Abby!

    • Stacy G

      We have a Pit Boss too and absolutely love ours!

  10. Renee

    We have one. It’s a great investment and everything turns out tasting perfect every time!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      That’s awesome Renee! I agree!

  11. ~jenn~

    Make sure you keep them locked up or locked down when you’re done. We had ours stolen. Don’t think they’re safe just because they’re in your fenced back yard or you live in a great neighborhood.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Oh my! That’s a great point, and I’m so sorry that happened to yours!

    • Holly

      Ugh! Sorry to hear that, some people suck! We have a security camera directly on ours. That would take some work to steal, they’re so heavy!

      • jenn

        Oh my god are they heavy! I got 1 on clearance at target when i didn’t even have a way to get it home (i took an uber to get there.) I just about died trying to get that thing outside & then back in to customer service to ask them to hold it til i could get my bf to pick it up. SOOOO HEAVY, it was the bottom of the line Traeger, no bells & whistles. My dad got 1 years ago & we fell in love with it. My mom & I ended up taking over it cuz it was so easy to use…I’m not sure it’s possible to mess up the meat on a Traeger…every meal was exceptional!

    • Laura

      I worry about that and we have a fenced backyard and live in a decent suburban neighborhood. My husband says ohhh it’ll be ok. But here I am thinking otherwise? Lol 🤷🏻‍♀️

  12. Lucy

    For us, the customer service experience has been awful. Rude and unhelpful on multiple occasions to the point that I feel the need to point it out. 😕

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Oh no so sorry to hear that you’ve had the opposite experience!

  13. Holly

    These are expensive but worth every penny. We will never look back.

  14. Brian

    These do last a long time. I was at a thrift/scratch and dent store about 5 years ago and actually ran across one of these. The large model. $300 and all it had was a small dent on the smoke pipe end. Absolutely no effect on its operation. This thing is used year young. In the winter I just put it in the garage and open the doors. It holds heat very well and it has gotten used more than out grill in the past five years…which was my previous favorite father day present. All in all this is a great , low maintenance smoker. Set it and forget it. LOVE IT.

  15. Bertie

    Yes! We love our Traegers! All we ever cook on! We have the Timberline1300 for the house and the smaller Tailgater for camping.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      That’s so cool! What a fun idea for camping.

  16. Dee

    For those who are looking for your last pellet grill, I suggest you look at REC TEC Grills – yes, they are expensive but their warranty and customer service is unbelievable – you always get a live person who answers the phone (during working hours and they are so responsive)! They ship free to your home – the food that you can turn out on them is amazing – you’ll never regret it! I’m a huge fan.

  17. Melissa

    We got one at Costco. Ours was $600. There are two models. One is $600 and one is $1000. Our $600 grills, smokes, has the hopper and has been amazing. Might be worth going in with a friend who has a membership if considering. Obviously you have to buy the wood pellets. We stick up on the blend at Costco when it’s in. If you smoke ‘quick’ stuff (chicken, fish, burgers etc) it doesn’t use many pellets. If you make a longer butt roast or something it’ll take quite a bit of pellets.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Great Melissa- Thanks for sharing that helpful Costco info!

  18. marybuffalo3

    i turned down one of these – we have a weber grill that we all love- my friend got on a list from traegers to be a tester of their product in our area – she had a grill to give me but i just could not let go of my weber – glad to see everyone is enjoying it –

  19. Jen

    After having multiple Aldi propane grills (every 3 years), we were ready to get a Weber. We were done with disposable grills. We bought a Traeger at Costco 2 1/2 years ago and we’ll never go back. We’ve found a place that carries Traegar pellets year around so any dry day above 60 is a possible smoke or grill day. I often will cook 2 different things so we can eat later in the week. I have also heard good things about Pit Boss, but they weren’t marketed or readily available in our market 2 years ago. Now, you can readily find pellet grills everywhere.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      That’s a great tip about cooking multiple items to get the most out of those pellets 👍 Thanks Jen!

  20. Ashleigh Zurlo

    We love ours! Especially my husband. His specialties are smoked ribs, chicken and brisket. We had the smaller one and after we moved back south from Alaska, we decided we needed a bigger one. It is a beast! Wifi is an extra perk. He likes being able to monitor his food on his phone. Great investment when you take care of it!

  21. Carrie

    Just an FYI for y’all….there is a Michigan made grill called Grilla Grills that is exactly like this grill and CHEAPER! Right now I believe it is $649. We bought one for my father in law and we LOVE it! It is built with high quality parts just like this one. It’s worth checking into if you are in the market for purchasing one of these grills! Happy shopping!

  22. jenn

    Yes dont even bother getting 1 without a cover for it! That’s a must have!

  23. aunt polly

    My husband bought himself a deluxe Traeger. He is loving it. He continues to buy accessories for it, using his Google pay card, so I can’t see how much money he is investing into meat! Fine with me because I’m constantly on Amazon! The other night I baked chicken because, honestly, a person can only eat so much food with mesquite/smoke flavor! But it is nice having him be responsible and enjoying making meals.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Ha I agree! Thanks for sharing 👍

  24. Kimberlyn

    Traeger does “shows’ at Costco. We talked to the rep about a month ago and was going to “throw in” a bunch of stuff with it if we purchased. We did not just due to the price. Eventually we will get one. I know they are back this week at my Costco – Also in AZ Lina D. Costco deal was way better than the online prices.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Nice! That’s a great tip!

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