What Does Mesquite Smoke Flavor Taste Like?

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Mesquite is a type of hardwood that is traditionally used for smoking and grilling meats.

It has a strong, distinct flavor that can be described as smoky and savory with a tiny bit of sweetness.

Proponents of mesquite claim that it imparts an incomparable flavor to foods cooked over its coals or wood.

What To Expect From Food Cooked With Mesquite

There is no doubt that mesquite brings a unique and delicious flavor to any BBQ. When mesquite is used, you can expect your meat to have a deep smoky flavor that will tantalize the taste buds.

The mesquite smoke also has a slight sweetness that pairs perfectly with BBQ sauce. This wood will also give your meats a wonderful savory taste that can’t be found in any other type of wood. If you want to take your BBQ game up a notch, mesquite is definitely the way to go!

The Bottom Line

Mesquite brings a unique flavor profile to any BBQ that can’t be matched by other types of wood. With mesquite, you can expect deep smoky notes, a hint of sweetness, and a wonderfully savory taste. Try mesquite for your next BBQ and you won’t be disappointed!

The Best Foods For Mesquite Smoke Flavor

Beef Brisket

When mesquite is used to smoke a beef brisket, the tantalizing aroma and smoky flavor that wafts through the air will make your mouth water. The mesquite gives the brisket an irresistible smoky depth that perfectly complements its juicy, tender texture. Because mesquite has a slightly sweet taste, it pairs easily with a classic BBQ sauce.


As any BBQ connoisseur knows, mesquite is the way to go for perfectly cooked ribs. The mesquite smoke gives the ribs a deep smoky flavor that can’t be beat! It also has enough sweetness to make your ribs finger-licking good—perfect for your next family gathering.


Mesquite is a great choice for sausage because it gives it an incredible smoky flavor that pairs perfectly with the savory spices in the meat. The mesquite also adds a hint of sweetness to the sausage, making it even more delicious!


Chicken makes the list with the caveat that you have to be careful. Mesquite is a great way to give chicken an extra flavor boost – but if you aren’t careful the flavor can overpower the more delicate profile of chicken.  We like to combine mesquite with another type of lighter wood when cooking chicken.


Since burgers cook so quickly on the grill, mesquite is a great way to make sure you infuse some of that authentic BBQ flavor onto your beef patties!  Most burgers are made from the chuck roast and/or brisket cuts of a cow, which are strong flavors that can stand up to the flavor profile of mesquite.


Similar to chicken, pork has a more delicate flavor profile compared to beef counterparts.  So if you’re making a pulled pork or a smoked pork shoulder, it’s definitely possible to get some great flavor with mesquite.

However, we’d advise doing some of the cook with foil wrapped around your pork to cut off the smoke flavor, or combining the mesquite with another type of wood.

Foods We’d Avoid When Cooking With Mesquite


While mesquite provides an unbeatable smoky flavor to most meats, it can be a disaster for fish. The mesquite smoke has a strong and overpowering taste that can easily overpower the delicate flavors of the fish. Additionally, mesquite smoke is very acidic which can cause the flesh of the fish to become tough and dry. If you’re looking for the perfect way to cook your seafood, mesquite is not recommended.


Mesquite can be an ok choice for grilling vegetables or adding flavor to a classic vegetable stir fry. The mesquite smoke will give the vegetables a wonderful smoky flavor that will tantalize your taste buds when done in moderation. However, mesquite should be used sparingly when grilling vegetables as the strong smoky flavor can easily overpower the delicate flavors of the vegetables.

Final Thoughts

Overall, mesquite is an excellent choice for adding flavor to your BBQ. The distinct smoky taste of mesquite can bring out the best in any type of meat and even some vegetables.

With mesquite, you can expect a deep smoky flavor that is balanced by subtle sweet notes and savory undertones. Whether you’re cooking beef brisket, chicken, ribs, or sausage, mesquite will provide the perfect balance between smokey goodness and deliciousness!

However, it’s important to remember that mesquite should be used sparingly when grilling fish or vegetables as its strong flavors may overpower their delicate tastes. So next time you fire up the grill, consider using mesquite wood chips – you won’t regret it!