GREAT! You’ve chosen a smoker and at least become proficeient at keeping a steady temp for a LONG time! You’ve learned about various cuts of meat that are best used on the Smoker and specifically those that interest you the most and you are ready to begin! WAIT!!!
Alas Grashopper…we’re NOT there YET…you’ve got choices to make about Spice Rubs and Sauces and as ALL seasoned BBQ Pros know…there are a LOT out there! Path of least resistance for competition and potentially most successful for beginners…use commercially available rubs and sauces that ‘work’ at competition. I’m not about to name names here as there are MANY great products out there and it’s a fun journey looking for them! I would suggest a quick Google search to start your Journey!
If you would like the BBQ to be ENTIRELY YOURS…then make your own Rubs and Sauces! Once again an area for a significant amount of study and one in which there is no shortage of opinion amongst ‘BBQ People’. SO…I’m staying out of names again, BUT would recommend that you find someone who can provide you with FRESH Spices and only by enough for 3-6 months! FRESH Spices make a REAL difference! If you don’t have a great Spice Source locally….check out Spices, Inc. – spicesinc.com they are GREAT folks and Socially Responsible!!!
Learn all you can about Spices and Seasonings and then begin your adventure to making your own sauces or rubs. It’s a journey that is WELL worth taking and it will make you better at BBQ…I think!