Meater Not Estimating Cook Time (Reasons And Solutions)

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Being the first ever wireless smart meat probe, Meater is pretty popular among BBQ enthusiasts. 

But does this wireless thermometer always work fine? What if your Meater not estimating cook time suddenly?

Below, I will discuss the possible reasons for Meater’s malfunction with the potential solutions. So, stay tuned to troubleshoot your Meater probe in no time!

Meater Not Estimating Cook Time – What Are The Reasons? 

Well, this smart meat probe actually monitors both the internal and ambient temperatures to calculate the estimated cooking time. 

And if it doesn’t show the estimated cook time suddenly, or shows the estimation wrong, there could be the following issues-

Incorrect Placement

Due to improper placement of the Meater probe, it might not show the remaining cook time. If the internal and ambient temperature sensors aren’t correctly inserted,  they can’t monitor the correct temperatures.

Especially, when you place the internal temperature tip wrongly, it can’t read the initial temperature of your food. 

As a result, the Meater can’t predict how long you should cook your meat to achieve a successful result. 

Carryover Cooking

Now, this is an interesting process that makes the meat continue to be cooked even after getting removed from the heat.

And the process continues for a few minutes. That certainly affects the overall cook time measurements by a Meater thermometer. 

In fact, carryover cooking can cause your meat to rise temperature as much as 25° F. That’s how the cook time estimation by Meater doesn’t come accurately and you end up overcooking your food. 


When you aim at searing your food with the Meater probe inserted, it ultimately throws off your cook time estimation.

Because the probe needs enough data to predict the remaining cooking time, whether you are smoking a brisket or a steak. 

Saying that when you sear your food, it’s difficult for the meat probe to collect enough data to hone up the estimation algorithm. It can’t read the internal temperature properly. 

That’s why high heat searing makes the Meater either not show the remaining cook time or predict it inaccurately. 

Ambient Temperature Fluctuations

As I mentioned, ambient cooking temperature plays a vital role in predicting cooking time. If the temperature fluctuates frequently, it will affect the cooking process. 

Therefore, even the smart Meater probe can’t say when you will reach your target temperature. 

Frozen Meat

Sometimes, we smoke frozen meat directly without resting it at room temperature. 

In that case, the Meater won’t estimate the probable cooking time to reach your selected temperature. 

To put it differently, it will not show the results of how long to cook your food until the internal temperature is above 16° F or 8° C.

How To Fix If Your Meater Not Estimating Cook Time

Now, if you want your smart Meater probe to measure the most accurate estimated cooking time, follow the quick fixes below-

Insert the Probe Correctly: If you want to place the Meater probe correctly, make sure to insert it into the thickest part of the meat. The sensors must be away from excess fat and bones.

The internal temperature sensor tip should be at the center of the thickest section of the meat. Alongside, the safety notch of the Meater probe should be entirely inside the meat.

However, the ambient temperature tip is supposed to be more than 2″ away from the meat surface. 

That’s how the Meater can predict the actual time to reach your targetted cooking temperature. 

Avoid Overcooking: You must consider the effect of carryover cooking while smoking food.

Usually, the Meater app measures the estimated cooking time considering carryover cooking. 

When your food approaches the target temperature, you get an alert saying “Remove from heat”. 

Taking the carryover cooking into account, you should not only get the meat out of the heat but also rest them on a different plate or tray.

Leaving the meat on the same tray would continue to rise the internal temperature making the meat overcooked.

Otherwise, you can set your target temperature a bit lower than your desired temperature. 

This will adjust the algorithm and let you keep the food on the same surface even after removing it from the heat.

The carryover cooking will continue to cook your food for several minutes to adjust the estimated cooking time.  

Reverse Searing: If you really need to sear your food at high temperatures, I highly recommend a “two-stage” reverse searing technique. 

First, cook your meat low-and-slow by inserting the Meater probe. Then remove the meat probe and start searing the meat.

On one hand, low-and-slow smoking will properly cook the inside cuts of the meat.

On the other hand, searing without the probe will not affect the algorithm in calculating the estimated cooking time.

If you start by searing the meat with the Meater probe inserted, it won’t be able to collect enough data such as the internal temperature, ambient temperature, etc. Resultantly, the estimated cooking time won’t appear. 

Keep the Ambient Temperature Consistent: The estimator is way accurate when the ambient temperature is consistent without major fluctuations such as flare-ups. If the ambient cooking temperature goes up or down, it will naturally affect the cook time measurement. 

So, to calculate the cooking time accurately, you must focus on keeping the ambient temperature as consistent as possible.

Use Room-Temperature Meat: If you instantly start smoking with frozen meat, you might not get the result you want with Meater. Because the starting temperature will be unexpectedly colder.

So, let the meat come up to room temperature. In this way, the internal temperature will go above 8° C/ 16° F quicker and you can see the remaining cooking time on the Meater app.

Also Read: Meater Plus Vs Meater Block – The Battle of the MEATER Thermometers

How Long Does Meater Take To Estimate Cooking Time?

In general, a Meater probe takes 20 minutes to calculate the estimated cooking time.  Although it may vary based on the temperature-rise over a set period of time.

However, the initial meat temperature,  meat type and size, ambient temperature, etc. can also affect how long the Meater needs to show the remaining cooking period.

And it’s important to note that, you must allow the meat probe to collect adequate data to provide a reliable cook time estimation. 

Also Read: Meater Vs Yummly Smart Thermometer – Which Suits You Best?

Does The Meater Time Remaining Include Resting Time?

Yes, the Meater smart probe includes the resting time while calculating the remaining cooking time for your food. 

In other words, a Meater thermometer considers the effect of carryover cooking when it predicts after how long the meat will be perfectly cooked. 

Also Read: Meater Block Won’t Update – Meater Block Troubleshooting Guide

Why Does Meater Take So Long To Estimate Cooking Time?

Usually, Meater needs more time to predict the actual cooking time when it can’t read the initial temperature correctly. If you use frozen meat, the starting temperature is colder. 

Resultantly, Meater needs some time to stabilize the starting temperature and offer an accurate reading in terms of the remaining cooking time.  

Does Meater Tell You When To Flip?

Unfortunately, no. The Meater is certainly one of the most updated wireless thermometers to monitor the internal temperature of your food. Based on its observation, it calculates the estimated cooking time.

A Meater probe even sends you an alert through the Meater app five minutes before the meat is entirely cooked.

But it has no built-in feature that tells you when to turn over the meat. It also doesn’t offer any guidelines on whether you should set the cooking temperature higher or lower.


If you follow the tips above, you can easily make the Meater probe work when its estimated time left feature doesn’t work.

As you can see, Meater is a reliable smart meat probe with a minimalistic wireless design. And it’s fairly easy to use through an app on your smartphone.

Nevertheless, Meater not estimating cook time is a common issue for many users due to the wrong use of the probe. I hope the guide above helps you fix it.

Happy smoking!

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