Big Green Egg - EGGhead Forum - The Ultimate Cooking Experience...
We hope everyone enjoyed their Fourth of July weekend and is excited for more warm weather grilling! This week, we’ll be making these two burgers: Stuffed Portobello Mushroom and Caribbean Chicken, and also eating lots of these Ice Cream Sandwiches in honor of National Ice Cream Month! It's time to think about getting out to one of the many #EGGfests around the country - see a list here

Thermapen????

I know this may be a stupid question, Why Is the thermapen a must? I have an instant read thermometer, what is so special about a thermapen? What does it do or is it just more accurate? Just wondering.
Clanton, Al LBGE
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Comments

  • ChubbsChubbs Posts: 3,588
    edited March 2013
    The speed of getting an ACCURATE temp. Hot egg can be a beeatchh to hold your hand over with a slow IR thermometer. Thermopen is fast and extremely accurate. I use mine for a ton of things. I fried goat cheese balls for a salad tonight and tested oil with it. When done I laid it on the counter open. Went in after dinner and it was on 68* which is what my house is set on. Best tool for egg IMO.
    Columbia, SC --- LBGE 2011 -- MINI BGE 2013
  • ScottborasjrScottborasjr Posts: 1,916
    Accuracy and quickness.  Can be a pretty accurate temp when put in a piece of meat in less then 5 seconds, some claim less then 3 seconds. The speed can be important when checking multiple pieces of meat or when trying to minimize the open and closing of the dome.
    I raise my kids, cook and golf.  When work gets in the way I'm pissed, I'm pissed off 48 weeks a year.
    Inbetween Iowa and Colorado, not close to anything remotely entertaining outside of football season. 
  • Solson005Solson005 Posts: 1,841
    edited March 2013
    It is just a top of the line instant thermometer, faster than most and goes from hot to cold much quicker not that most people do that but it can be used for both. I use mine to check water temp for tea and oil temp for frying. The new ones are also spashproof which is nice. 

    Any instant thermometer works, most people here seem to get top of the line stuff. 

    It doesn't hold any magical powers, the green ones are just a tad bit faster than the rest though..  :D

    Edit: They are so fast you get three responses while I try and type this out.. 
    Large & Small BGE, CGW Two-Tier Swing Rack for BOTH EGGS, Spider for the Wok, eggCARTen & and Cedar Pergola my Eggs call home in Edmond, OK. 
  • JeffMJeffM Posts: 96
    It is truly  very close to instant read.  I f you really time your thermometer you will be surprised at how long it actually takes to get a final reading.   Ten seconds is a big deal to many of us.  it is also very accurate but yours may be as well.
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 4,624
    edited March 2013
    As @solson005 says-the speed and accuracy are of much greater importance during hot & fast cooks where a few degrees in temperature will impact the finish texture of the cook.  For low&slows all you really need is some remote to monitor the cook external to the BGE.  Since that environment is quite stable over time the speed factor is of much less value.  Different tools for different cooks in my book anyhow.  YMMV-
    Louisville
  • Central_Bama_EggerCentral_Bama_Egger Posts: 406
    edited March 2013
    Ahahahaha. I'm with ya!!
    Clanton, Al LBGE
  • MrCookingNurseMrCookingNurse Posts: 3,732
    It is just the best, hands down, measurment in seconds as scott said, if you have 6 breast on you can probe them all in less than 30 seconds and shut the dome or pull them.  

    super fast
    accurate
    cheap

    2 out of 3 always win


    _______________________________________________

    LBGE & SBGE (big momma and pat)
  • I think an instant read thermometer is a must, but Thermapen is just one of many brands available. I have one and I'm delighted with it, love the very fine tip and very fast readout, but any high-quality instant-read thermo should give good results if it's accurately calibrated. There are some cheap ones out there and aside from being slower, I suspect they're much less accurate and also less stable over time. If yours is calibrated well (check it from time to time with an ice water bath and boiling water, should be within a degree or so) and is fast enough for you, and has a tip that's fine enough to get it where you want it, then I say don't worry be happy.

  • SMITTYtheSMOKERSMITTYtheSMOKER Posts: 1,930
    edited March 2013

    Cutting corners on equipment will haunt you in the end.

    I have seen many a customer flinch at the $90+ price tag on the Thermapen and buy a $30 alternative...only to buy the real deal soon down the line.  Now they have $130 invested-LOL

     

    -SMITTY     

    from SANTA CLARA, CA

  • Yeah. I agree with buy the best 1st and save money
    Clanton, Al LBGE
  • LDRLDR Posts: 145

    I hadn't been able to talk myself into the Thermapen, but finally ordered one when I saw the version with flames on it.  The wife mocked me for laying out that much cash for a thermometer, but she quickly decided it was worth it.  And then, we liked it so much we gave all the sisters and parents Thermapens for Christmas (fastest I've ever finished Christmas shopping).

    I like being able to quickly check a couple of spots in the meat to see if I need to adjust/flip.  However, the biggest benefit to me is that I don't have to WONDER if I'm getting a good read.  No more guessing.

  • MrCookingNurseMrCookingNurse Posts: 3,732
    now if you already have one that works your golden, but replace it with the best when it fails!!!


    _______________________________________________

    LBGE & SBGE (big momma and pat)
  • ChubbsChubbs Posts: 3,588
    edited March 2013

    Cutting corners on equipment will haunt you in the end.

    I have seen many a customer flinch at the $90+ price tag on the Thermapen and buy a $30 alternative...only to buy the real deal soon down the line.  Now they have $130 invested-LOL

    I am one of those morons, Smitty! It didn't take me long to grab one. It really makes you a better cook. There are a hand full of times I had to put a piece of meat back on egg because SWMBO said too rare. Has not happened once since the thermopen!
    Columbia, SC --- LBGE 2011 -- MINI BGE 2013
  • MrCookingNurseMrCookingNurse Posts: 3,732
    I used to do the slice technique to see if my chicken was done. It's pittiful to serve chicken with one breast cut open. Now I serve amaing juicy chicken right when it's ready!

    I'd buy it just for chicken, its that worth it.

    Wanna hit the money on a steak, get it.



    _______________________________________________

    LBGE & SBGE (big momma and pat)
  • Cuda1965Cuda1965 Posts: 49
    They're a little pricey but worth it. Like others have said, they're very accurate and fast. I like it because you can quickly check several spots on what you're cooking. Also i have used to to get a better idea how something was cooking. Youu can slowly insert the probe and watch as the temperature changes as you hit different parts of the meat.
  • NibbleMeThisNibbleMeThis Posts: 2,215
    Way back when I first got my Thermapen I did some side by side testing of several thermometers for accuracy and time.  I tested how fast they registered boiling water temps.  All registered within 1 degree so accuarcy was even.

    But time was a big difference.  The worst one took 19 seconds versus the 3 the Thermapen got and the 6 that a Taylor Weekend Warrior took. 

    Sixteen seconds of difference might not sound like a big deal. But consider fillet mignon for an example.  If I am cooking six fillets and using the slowest of these thermometers, it would take me almost two extra minutes of cooking time to temp check all six steaks. The steaks I wanted medium rare would now be cooked medium to medium well. So seconds can make a big difference.

    The Taylor Weekend Warrior is a good buy at around $18 (2009 price).  But I went through 2 or 3 of them before getting a Thermapen.  My Thermapen is going on 4 years old, still using the original battery and still super fast.
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 5,011
    edited March 2013
    Thermapens are great, but consider the RT600c by the same company. 25% of the cost of a Thermapen, difference in time to take reading is only a whopping 3secs more.

    It only comes in boring white though.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • caliking said:
    Thermapens are great, but consider the RT600c by the same company. 25% of the cost of a Thermapen, difference in time to take reading is only a whopping 3secs more. It only comes in boring white though.
     
    Decent thermometer, much smaller read out though.  Nice big read out on the Thermapen is nice.

     

    -SMITTY     

    from SANTA CLARA, CA

  • Those are some great points.
    Clanton, Al LBGE
  • mhoutmanmhoutman Posts: 37
    I am in the Netherlands and was able to buy a refurbished Thermapen from the manufacturers ETI eBay site. Got it last week and looks like new with warranty. I do not know if I am allowed to post the link but it is easy to find.

    That said, ETI will soon release a Thermapen with backlid display :)
    Dutch EGGhead and proud owner of a Big Green Egg Mini and Large
  • dawsonhulldawsonhull Posts: 101
    I bought one a couple of months ago when they were on sale and it has definitely been worth it! It would've been worth it if I paid full price for it, too! When I told my wife I needed this, she said "You need ANOTHER thermometer?" But the Thermapen allowed me to grill chicken wings last night right to 175-185. They were the juiciest wings we had ever had.

    Other thermometers say "Instant Read" on them, but it's just a marketing term. For the Thermapen, it's actually true! Takes about 3 seconds.
  • YEMTreyYEMTrey Posts: 1,339
    I was a bit hesitant before I bought mine.  The $100 price tag with shipping seemed a bit much.  Now I use it all the time on every cook and consider it an intricate part of each and every cook.

    Plus I couldn't pass it up when they offered the black version with flames.  It was a no brainer then, lol!
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    "Ain't nobody gonna find ya, unless you get yourself lost."
  • burr_baby33burr_baby33 Posts: 501
    There are a bunch of thermometers that claim "instant read" and I have most of them in a box in the garage.  Now I use my thermapen 100% of the time.
  • robnybbqrobnybbq Posts: 1,462
    Does anyone know if they need to be calibrated? 

    I did two cooks this week and was dissappointed in the results going off of the Thermapen readings.  Steaks cooked to 140 were raw in the middle and steaks cooked to 160 were medium rare.  Did spatchcock chicken last night and it took almost 2 hours to cook the chicken (thighs to 180) at 400 dome.  and the chicken was dry. - Over cooked IMO.



    _______________________________________________________________
    LBGE, Adjustable Rig, Spider, High-Que grate, maverick ET-732, Thermapen,


    Garnerville, NY
  • BryanLyleBryanLyle Posts: 28
    robnybbq said:
    Does anyone know if they need to be calibrated? 

    I did two cooks this week and was dissappointed in the results going off of the Thermapen readings.  Steaks cooked to 140 were raw in the middle and steaks cooked to 160 were medium rare.  Did spatchcock chicken last night and it took almost 2 hours to cook the chicken (thighs to 180) at 400 dome.  and the chicken was dry. - Over cooked IMO.


    Test the temperature of boiling water. It should be around 212.  If it's WAY off, I would have it replaced.
  • Charlie tunaCharlie tuna Posts: 2,191
    robnybbq said:
    Does anyone know if they need to be calibrated? 

    I did two cooks this week and was dissappointed in the results going off of the Thermapen readings.  Steaks cooked to 140 were raw in the middle and steaks cooked to 160 were medium rare.  Did spatchcock chicken last night and it took almost 2 hours to cook the chicken (thighs to 180) at 400 dome.  and the chicken was dry. - Over cooked IMO.


    If i spatchcocked a chicken for two hours at 400 degrees ---  it would not be edible!!  Something is wrong somewhere..
  • Just got mine via FedEX today, looking forward to using it!
    Dave
    no, not -that- one!
    KI4PSR
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,756
    robnybbq said:
    Does anyone know if they need to be calibrated? 

    I did two cooks this week and was dissappointed in the results going off of the Thermapen readings.  Steaks cooked to 140 were raw in the middle and steaks cooked to 160 were medium rare.  Did spatchcock chicken last night and it took almost 2 hours to cook the chicken (thighs to 180) at 400 dome.  and the chicken was dry. - Over cooked IMO.


    Sounds like you were measuring the outside of the meat.  Try stabbing it in the side of a steak.  You want to find the coolest reading you can, and that's your internal temp.  Don't be shy - stab it like Lizzy Borden.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • Charlie tunaCharlie tuna Posts: 2,191
    OK Dave, stop playing with it, you'll wear the battery out !!!
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