How to Build a Smokehouse

Whatever your reason for wanting to build a smokehouse on your property, this project is a fun, outdoors venture that you can complete in a weekend. Read the steps listed below and learn about how you can build your own smokehouse.



  • Two 55-gallon (208.2-liter) steel drums
  • Six 6-inch clay cylindrical tile joints (five straight pieces and 1 quarter bend joint)
  • Shovel
  • Saw

Here's what to do:

  1. Cut holes in the drums Saw holes in the drums the same diameter as the clay tile joints. Cut the hole in the bottom of the drum that will be used to smoke the meat and in the side of the drum that will be used as a fireplace.
  2. Situate your smokehouse Find a spot on your property that will have ample room to house your smokehouse. Using your shovel, dig a hole that will completely cover one of the steel drums. Next, dig a tunnel 10 to 12-feet (3 to 3.7-meters) long that will run from the fireplace drum to the smoker. The tunnel must be deep enough that once you place the clay tile inside, you'll be able to cover it with at least 2 feet (61 centimeters) of dirt.
  3. Assemble your smokehouse Place the clay tile joints in the tunnel. Connect the five straight joints. One end of the last joint should be attached to the hole in the fireplace drum. Attach one end of the quarter bend joint to one end of the straight joints. Attach the other end of the bend joint to the hole in the smoker drum. Place the fireplace drum in the ground and pack dirt around it so that it sits securely in place.
  4. Pack dirt back in the tunnel Once you have assembled the basic structure of the smokehouse, pack at least 2 feet (61 centimeters) of dirt on top of the clay tile tube [source: The Farm].

Cover the fireplace drum with a piece of metal when you smoke your meats. Hang the meats by a steel rod in the smoker drum. Cover the smoker drum with a piece of wood, preferably cypress, in order to extract a rich smokehouse flavor [source: End Times Report].