By smoking food, you are cooking it over some firewood. The reason for doing this is that the natural flavors of the wood are going to blend perfectly with the flavors of the food being smoked.
When people think of smoked food, they usually think of smoked meat, but cheese is also another type of wood that can be cooked over firewood!
In this article, we are going to break down the top six types of wood that are best to use when smoking cheese.
We will also touch on the size of the wood to use, which is also another important thing to consider when smoking food.
Best Wood for Smoking Cheese
Hickory wood is a hardwood that is native to North America. When it is not used to smoke food, it is used to make items like furniture and flooring. It even creates tool handles and pallets. Hickory wood is very versatile!
If you have ever used hickory wood to smoke meat before, you know there is a moderate flavor that tastes very similar to bacon.
It is best used for cheeses that have strong flavors, like cheddar. Not to say you can’t use other types of cheese, but it mixes well with strong cheeses.
Oak wood can usually be found in the Northern Hemisphere of the world. This type of wood is very durable, so getting floors or furniture that are made of oak wood can last a long time.
Smoking cheese over oakwood combines very well with the natural flavors of the cheese. Like hickory wood, it blends very well with strong cheeses like cheddar.
It ends up creating a savory wood flavor infused into the cheese. You can use other types of cheese because it will all taste delicious!
Applewood is from the wood of an apple tree. While the apple tree is mostly known for its fruit, the wood is just as good and can create some nice items for the home.
The biggest reason the wood from the tree is not often used, like, say, in the US, is that the tree is not native to the country.
Using applewood to smoke cheese will help infuse it with a fruity and sweet taste that is more on the mild side.
You might think the fruity taste does not mix well with the natural flavors of the cheese, but it does work.
Cherrywood comes from the Black Cherry tree. It does not come from the tree that provides us with the cherries we see and buy in our local grocery store.
These types of trees are a hardwood that can live as long as 100 years. Pretty impressive when you think about it.
Smoking Cheese with cherry wood infuses the cheese with the sweetness you would expect but also a smoky flavor as well.
It is best to use cheeses that are not on the strong side, like blue cheese, because it just will not mix well. Cheeses with mild flavors are the ones you should smoke over cherry wood.
This does not mean you can’t use stronger cheese but do so at your own risk.
The maple tree can be found mostly in places like North America. While New York, Michigan, and the Great Lakes are where you can find the most maple trees, they can grow in other parts of the continent.
Most often, Maplewood is used to make furniture such as desks and butcher blocks, to name a few.
Maplewood will infuse the cheese with a very rich smoky flavor that combines well with the cheese. Out of all the woods on this list, this one is probably one that is commonly used to smoke cheese.
Pecan wood is native to North America and comes from the pecan tree, which provides us with the delicious nut pecan. This tree can live up to nearly 150 years.
Most often, it is used to make furniture, floors, cabinets, doors, and even wood panels.
Smoking cheese over pecan wood will bring about a robust flavor that has a nutty flavor mixed in with it.
Think of the natural flavors that you get with cheese and imagine how it will taste when combined with pecan wood. It will be a taste that your palette will always remember.
Size of Wood
It does not matter if you are smoking cheese, fish, or meat. The size of the wood matters with all these foods. Using the wrong size could end up ruining your meat.
You can buy the following wood sizes for smoking food:
- Pellet Wood can be found in pellet shape and is usually used for pellet grills. Best if a small cut of meat is used because of how quickly it burns out.
- Wood Chunks are chunks of wood great for large cuts of meat because of how long it cooks.
- Wood Chips are tiny pieces of wood that burn out pretty quickly compared to some of the other options on this list. Best to use a smaller cut of meat if you plan to use wood chips.
- Wood Discs are puck-shaped pieces of wood that are very eco-friendly.
- Split Sized Wood is wood in the typical log shape, and it burns for a long amount of time, which is great for larger pieces of meat.
Always practice fire safety, so there are no accidents while you are cooking.
And this brings us to the end of our article, you food and barbeque lovers out there! These are the best six pieces of wood to use when smoking cheese.
All of them have their strong points, so if you are unsure of what to use when smoking cheese, give all of them a chance!
You also learned the best wood size to use when smoking meat. This is an important thing to know because using the wrong size is not great for your meat and could even end up ruining it in the long run.
You might also be interested in the following:
- The Best Wood for Smoking Ribs
- The Best Wood for Smoking Salmon
- The Best Wood for Smoking Turkey
- The Best Wood for Smoking Chicken
- The Best Wood for Smoking Fish
- The Best Wood for Smoking Pork
- The Best Wood for Smoking Brisket
I have been smoking and grilling meat from an early age and enjoy sharing my knowledge and expertise through the hundreds of articles I have written about BBQ. I hope to make everyone’s BBQ journey that little bit easier.