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Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Tailgating Chicken Wings

Posted by Susie B. on August 13, 2014

Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Tailgating Chicken Wings

Where there is bacon, there is something to wrap it around! We are never short on bacon, so the only real question is why on earth did it take us thing long to wrap up some wings?! It is like a match made in Traeger heaven (we're pretty sure that's a place and that there is loads of bacon there). Juicy chicken wings and salty, smoky bacon come together in a harmonious union to create a food experience heretofore unknown. It was like these two were meant to be together. Food nirvana, if you will. To round out the best food in the world experience, we added beer. Because, you know, beer. The brine before the grilling results in exceptionally moist and flavorful chicken from the inside out. There is nothing but winning in this entire recipe.

We seasoned our wings liberally with Traeger's Cajun Shake just before wrapping, but really any seasoning would be absolutely outstanding. We also preferred to use the whole chicken wing because wrapping the smaller drumettes and flats individually required too much time and way too many toothpicks. Plus, our guests were more satisfied with more meat. Go figure!

 

Bacon Wrapped Chicken Wings

 

Prep Time: 25-30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Serves: 10-12 people
Recommended Pellets: Hickory, Apple, Oak Pecan

INGREDIENTS:
2 lbs whole chicken wings
1 large can beer
2 teaspoons red pepper flakes (optional)
1 lb bacon (10-12 slices, depending on how many wings you've got)
Traeger Cajun Shake (your favorite rub, or cracked black pepper)

PREPARATION:

Trim the tips off of the wings and discard or set aside for homemade stock.

Cut the skin flap between the flat and the drummette so the wing stays a little more straight and is easier to wrap.

Place the wings in a large bowl and cover with the beer and red pepper flakes (if desired). Refrigerate for 12-24 hours before grilling.

Remove the wings from the brine and pat dry. Season liberally with Traeger's Cajun Shake.

Wrap each wing with a piece of bacon. You can secure with toothpicks, if necessary.

When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open for 4-5 minutes to establish the fire. Close the lid and turn the temperature setting up to High. Allow the grill to preheat for 10-15 minutes.

Place the wings directly on the grill grate, close the lid, and cook for 30 minutes.

Flip the wings and cook for an additional 30 minutes or until the bacon is crisp and the chicken is fully cooked (at least 165 degrees F).

Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Tailgating Chicken Wings

Serve immediately with your favorite sauces for dipping. We love buffalo sauce and Traeger's Texas Spicy Sauce. YUM!

 

Bacon Wrapped Chicken Wings.docx (14.78 kb)

Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Tailgating Chicken Wings

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Game Day Eats: Pulled Pork Potato Skins

Posted by Mary M. on August 12, 2014

Game Day Eats: Pulled Pork Potato Skins

What more perfect thing is there to snack on while watching the ole pig skin get thrown around than pulled pork potato skins?! Football season is back, baby!! There is something so alluring about firing up the Traeger in the fall and enjoying the smell of smoke mingled with the smell of crisp leaves and then kicking back to enjoy some football. 

We noticed that Traeger Nation member, Sherry Carter, fired up these bad boys and we must concur that they are porktastically amazing! If you haven't made these yet, today is your day.

PULLED PORK POTATO SKINS

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOK TIME: 1 hour 25 minutes
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Any
MAKES: 8 potato skins

INGREDIENTS

4 russet potatoes
4 tablespoons butter
2 cups leftover pulled pork
1 cup cheddar cheese
Traeger Regular BBQ Sauce, of your favorite BBQ sauce
Chopped chives, for garnish
Diced jalapenos, for garnish

PREPARATION

Start the Traeger on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (about 5 minutes). Preheat to High heat, lid closed, for 10 to 15 minutes.

Wash and scrub the potatoes and prick all over with a fork. Wrap each potato with foil and cook for about 1 hour and 15 minutes or until they are squeezably soft.

Remove, unwrap and cool the potatoes until they are cool enough to handle. Leave the Traeger on.

Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise.

Scoop out most of the cooked potato, leaving a 1/2-inch shell. Melt the butter in the microwave and brush both sides of each potato skin with the melted butter.

Cook the potato skins directly on the grill grate on High heat for 4 minutes on each side.

Take the skins off the Traeger, but leave it on. Grab some of our delicious pulled pork, reheated. Place the potato skins on a baking sheet and pile a mound of pulled pork into each. Drizzle with some sweet and tangy Traeger BBQ Sauce. Top with a lovely sprinkle of cheese.

Put the potato skins back on the Traeger and cook for a few more minutes or until the cheese melts.

Game Day Eats: Pulled Pork Potato Skins

Remove the potato skins from the Traeger and garnish with some chopped chives, jalapenos or whatever your heart desires.

Game Day Eats: Pulled Pork Potato Skins

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Pulled Pork Potato Skins RECIPE.docx (12.16 kb)

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Traeger Basics: The Perfect New York Strip Steak with Grilled Onions and Mushrooms

Posted by Susie B. on August 12, 2014

Traeger Basics: The Perfect New York Strip Steak with Grilled Onions and Mushrooms

Hey Traeger Nation. Let's talk steaks.

New York Strip Steaks, to be more precise. One of the most long-standing steak cuts on the market today, the New York strip tops the list of tastiest steaks for a slew of reasons. It is cut from the part of the cow called the short loin. This muscle doesn't do much work, and therefore is exceptionally tender. The strip steak has the perfect marbling of fat (not quite as fatty as a rib-eye and much more fatty than a tenderloin). If you're buying a T-bone, you're essentially buying a strip steak with the bone attached and a small portion of tenderloin. This cut of beef is very meaty and has a great beef flavor that is perfectly enhanced by Traeger's wood smoke.

Selecting the perfect steak: If you are going to a butcher, have them freshly slice your strip steaks to about 1 1/2 inches thick. Pick the steaks with the most amount of marbling (fat) because that marbling is what gives your steak the most moisture and flavor. If you are buying steaks that have already been sliced, be sure to select steaks that are bright red without any brown or grey areas. Shop for your steaks on the same day you plan to cook them. The fresher the steak, the brighter the flavor. Meat is really good at absorbing any odors you have lurking in your fridge and the longer they sit in there, even covered by plastic, the more unwanted flavors they absorb.

Preparing the perfect steak: Most recipes for steak will counsel that your allow your meat to come to room temperature before grilling to ensure even cooking. With a Traeger that is completely unnecessary. In fact, the opposite is true. The most smoke flavor is absorbed when the meat is cooler and since you will be smoking your steaks before cooking, they will slowly come up in temperature to even out before you put them on a hot grill. Immediately before putting your steaks on to smoke, season them liberally. Use the palms of your hands to press and massage the seasoning into the meat. This will help prevent the seasoning from falling off when you transfer the steaks to the grill grate. Now you're ready to cook!

The Perfect New York Strip Steak with Grilled Onions and Mushrooms

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes to smoke, 6-8 minutes to grill
Serves: 2
Recommended Pellets: Mesquite, Alder, Hickory, Oak

INGREDIENTS:
1 small yellow onion
1 (12 oz) package white button mushrooms
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablebspoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
4 New York strip steaks
Traeger Prime Rib Rub

PREPARATION:

Start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open for 4-5 minutes to establish the fire.

Place the butter, olive oil, and sliced onions in a cast iron pan and place directly on the grill grate with the seasoned steaks. Close the lid and Smoke for 30 minutes.

Remove the smoked steaks to a separate plate and tent with foil.

Turn the temperature setting to High and add the mushrooms to the cast iron skillet. Season with the salt and black pepper. Cook the mushroom and onion mixture until soft.

Return the steaks to the hot grill and cook for 3-4 minutes per side for a rare steak. (For a great reference on cooking a steak to the perfect done-ness, check out this blog post!)

In the last minute of cooking, top the steaks with the grilled onions and mushrooms. Allow the steaks to rest for 6-8 minutes before cutting and enjoy!

Traeger Basics: The Perfect New York Strip Steak with Grilled Onions and Mushrooms

Traeger Basics: The Perfect New York Strip Steak with Grilled Onions and Mushrooms

Printable recipe:

The Perfect New York Strip Steak with Grilled Onions and Mushrooms.docx (14.32 kb)

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Smoked Caliente Chili Rubbed Ribeye Steaks

Posted by Mary M. on August 11, 2014

Smoked Caliente Chili Rubbed Ribeye Steaks

"Live life on the edge." "You only live once." So many of these popular "mottos" are over-used to the point of near extinction. (And we're not all-together very sad about it.)

BUT, hold off the execution squad. For once, we think a generous application of these statements is quite appropriate. If you were ever to act like there was no tomorrow, you'd better have one of these ribeyes in your hand or at least add it to your "Last Meal" menu.

The drool factor is created after a good hour of smoking a delicious fat-ribboned ribeye that's coated with spicy chili powder and smoky cumin. Grill this slab medium-rare and we could eat one of these lovelies every hour of that last day!

CALIENTE CHILI RUBBED RIBEYE STEAKS

PREP TIME: 4 hours up to 2 days to marinate
COOK TIME: about 1 hour 10 minutes
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Mesquite, Oak or Cherry
SERVES: 4

INGREDIENTS

4 beef ribeye or strip steaks
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cumin

PREPARATION

Mash the garlic and salt into a paste in a small bowl; stir in the chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, olive oil, brown sugar and cumin.

Rub all surfaces of the steaks with the mixture.

Place the steaks and the remaining rub into a large resealable plastic bag and refrigerate for 4 hours or up to 2 days.

When you're ready to cook start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (about 5 minutes). Close the lid and allow it to preheat for 10 minutes.

Place the steaks on the grill grate and smoke for 1 hour.

Remove the steaks to a platter and turn the heat up to High heat. Close the lid and let it preheat for about 10 to 15 minutes.

Return the steaks to the grill and cook until your desired doneness. We love a good medium-rare, which is about 135 to 140 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, so we cooked it for about 3 to 5 minutes on the first side and only a minute or two on the second side.

Smoked Caliente Chili Rubbed Ribeye Steaks

Let the steaks rest for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting into these beauties.

Smoked Caliente Chili Rubbed Ribeye Steaks

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Chili rubbed Ribeyes Recipe.docx (11.95 kb)

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Grilled Sunny Bacon-Avo California Chicken

Posted by Mary M. on August 11, 2014

There are those dishes that reading the description alone makes it feel like summer. Fresh avocado on grilled chicken with a warm, oozing covering of swiss cheese sounds like the perfect thing to devour while lounging in the shade with a cold lemonade in hand.

And then we throw some bacon in it and make it the best darn summer you've ever tasted! You bet your bottom dollar we did!

SUNNY BACON-AVO CALIFORNIA CHICKEN

PREP TIME: 1 hour to marinate
COOK TIME: about 35 minutes
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Hickory or Maple
SERVES: 4

INGREDIENTS

4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves
8 slices bacon
4 tablespoons lime juice
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 teaspoons ground cumin
Salt and pepper
2 ripe avocados, pitted, peeled and sliced
8 slices swiss cheese
4 tablespoons picante sauce

PREPARATION

Pound the chicken to 1/2-inch thickness. We found it helpful for easy clean-up to put the chicken breasts in a large resealable bag and then to pound them out.

Coat the chicken on both sides with the olive oil, cumin, salt and pepper to taste. Let the flavors sink into the meat for an hour or so.

Meanwhile, cook up that bacon.

Start the Traeger on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (about 5 minutes). Preheat, lid closed, to 350 degrees F for 10 to 15 minutes.

Cook the bacon on a baking sheet on the Traeger for about 20 minutes or until the fat is rendered but the bacon is still pliable.

Turn the heat on the Traeger up to High heat and let it preheat for 10 minutes with the lid closed. Just before cooking, drizzle both sides of the chicken with the lime juice.

Place the chicken breasts on the grill and cook for 8 minutes.

Flip the chicken and cook for an additional 2 minutes or until the meat registers 165 degree F on an instant-read thermometer.

Take the chicken off the Traeger and top each breast with 2 slices of bacon.

Pile on avocado slices and finish with swiss cheese.

Carefully put the chicken back on the Traeger and cook for another minute or until the cheese melts.

Transfer the chicken to a platter and finish with a few dashes of picante sauce.

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Bacon-Avo California Chicken Recipe.docx (12.05 kb)

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How to Grill Corn on the Husk on your Traeger

Posted by Mary M. on August 11, 2014

How to Grill Corn on the Husk on your Traeger

One of the most sweet and plump vegetables to fire up and sink your teeth into this time of year is golden CORN. Luckily for you, we love using grilled corn in every way possible and cultivating some recipes for our dutiful Traeger Nation to enjoy as well.

Corn makes a most excellent accompaniment to all of your favorite smoked proteins - from grilled chicken to brisket to pulled pork. We decided to go back to basics and give you a simple, delicious and rustic way of grilling corn, using the husk as a protective and moisture and flavor-locking shell. Basically the husk holds in all of that sweet kernel deliciousness. We call it Corn on the Husk.

GRILLED CORN ON THE HUSK

PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 20 to 25 minutes
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Any
SERVES: 4

INGREDIENTS

4 ears of corn
1 tablespoon salt
Butter, salt & pepper or whatever toppings you like (i.e. - bacon crumbles)

PREPARATION

Start the Traeger on Smoke with the lid open. Preheat, lid closed, to 375 degrees F for 10 to 15 minutes.

Pull the outer husks down the ear to the base.

Strip away the silk from each ear of corn by hand or use a vegetable brush (or even a clean toothbrush) to gently brush them off.

Fold husks back into place, and place the ears of corn in a large bowl of cold water with 1 tablespoon of salt for 10 minutes.

Remove corn from water and shake off excess. If you like, you can use some butcher's twine to wrap around the top of the husk to hold it in place.

Place the corn on the grill, close the cover and grill for 20 to 25 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, or until kernels are tender when pierced with a paring knife.

How to Grill Corn on the Husk on your Traeger

Remove the corn from the grill and take off the husks. Season with butter, salt and pepper and enjoy!

How to Grill Corn on the Husk on your Traeger

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Corn on the Husk Recipe.docx (11.73 kb)

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Cheese and Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots - Two Ways

Posted by Mary M. on August 10, 2014

Cheese and Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots - Two Ways

With a combo of potatoes, bacon and cheese or maple syrup you can basically count these tasty, crunchy treats as a well-rounded breakfast. Or just a convenient, popable snack. Imagine pulling these beauties out at your next barbecue or game day. Any reason to eat these is excusable.

We couldn't decide between sweet and savory so we just had to try both. (Plus we love a good reason to Traeger more bacon-wrapped goods!) One is stuffed with cheese and doused with hot sauce. The other is a sweet potato tot drizzled with maple syrup and rolled in a spicy brown sugar. Both wrapped in bacon, of course.

BACON-WRAPPED TATER TOTS - 2 WAYS

PREP TIME: 25 min
COOK TIME: 15 min
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Any
MAKES: 24 appetizers

INGREDIENTS

Cheesy Tots:
12 tater tots, partially defrosted (15 minutes at room temperature)
6 strips center-cut bacon, cut in half crosswise
12 (1/2-inch) chunks sharp cheddar cheese
Tabasco sauce
12 toothpicks

Sweet Maple Tots:
12 sweet potato tater tots, partially defrosted (15 minutes at room temperature)
6 strips center-cut bacon, cut in half crosswise
12 toothpicks
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon ancho chile powder
Maple syrup

PREPARATION

Start Traeger on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (about 5 minutes). Preheat Traeger to 375 degrees F, lid closed, for 10 to 15 minutes.

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean up and place a cooking rack on top. Make sure that you've partially defrosted your tater tots to make them easier to work with.

Using a sharp knife, gently cut a slit down the center of the regular potato tater tots.

Gently wiggle a piece of cheese into the slit.

Cheese and Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots - Two Ways

Sprinkle Tabasco sauce on top. Wrap each cheese-stuffed tot with the half slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick. Arrange the completed bacon-wrap tater tots on the wire rack on the baking sheet.

For the sweet potato tater tots, mix together the brown sugar and ancho chile powder. Wrap each tot with a half slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick.

Drizzle the sweet potato tots with maple syrup.

Next roll them in the brown sugar and chile powder mixture. Place the finished tots on the wire rack on the baking sheet.

Place the baking sheet on the preheated grill grate and cook the tater tots for 10 minutes.

Turn heat up to High heat and cook for 5 more minutes or until they appear to be cooked through and the bacon is crispy. Keep an eye on the sweet tater tots so that they don't burn. Serve immediately.

Cheese and Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots - Two Ways

Cheese and Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots - Two Ways

Cheese and Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots - Two Ways

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Bacon-wrapped Tots Recipe.docx (12.19 kb)

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Traeger Accessory Guide: Junior Folding Leg Kit

Posted by Susie B. on August 9, 2014

Traeger Accessory Guide: Junior Folding Leg Kit

If you are the lucky owner of a Junior, then you ahve the unique opportunity to invest in our amazing Junior Folding Leg Kit. A few bolts a screws and a couple minutes of your time and you are ready to take your Junior anywhere! Use it with the legs extended at your campsite or folded up while tailgating. Either way, you will have amazing Traeger'ed food in places you never imagined possible before. 

What is your favorite place to Traeger, Nation?

 

 

 

tailgating grill kit

 

Traeger Accessory Guide: Junior Folding Leg Kit

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Does your Favorite Snack Taste Good with Bacon? Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Treat-Off!

Posted by Susie B. on August 8, 2014

Does your Favorite Snack Taste Good with Bacon? Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Treat-Off!

Have you ever found yourself thinking, "Man, this (insert dessert item here) is super delicious, but I bet it would be even more delicious if it was wrapped in bacon and Traegered!"? Well, I imaging it goes without saying that we most definitely have found ourselves thinking that exact thing. Lucky for us, we make the time to turn those flights of fancy into tasty reality. Show up to the office with a box of these bad boys on a Tuesday morning and you'll have a promotion by Wednesday. Probably.

 

Behold, the bacon wrapped treat-off.

 

A few tips to get you started for the love of all things bacon and sweet.

* Use thinly sliced bacon. Maple flavored if you can get your mitts on it. We found it added just a perfect bonus layer of sweetness.

**Preheat your grill for a full 10-15 minutes before putting the bacon wrapped treats on. You want the grill to be nice and hot to cook that bacon in a hurry without overcooking and drying out your treats.

*** Pre-cook your bacon for 5-7 minutes, drain well on paper towels, and then let it cool enough to handle before wrapping it around your treats. You want the bacon cooked, but still pliable.

**** Don't use colored toothpicks. Lesson learned from experience, here. They bleed weird colors into your food.

***** Serve while still warm, if possible. Everything is better fresh off of the Traeger!

DOUGHNUTS: We preferred the cake doughnut bars over all other varieties. They held up really well to the heat and were the easiest to wrap with bacon. The glazed was next on our list. It was warm and soft with the perfect bacon-y crunch on the outside. The maple and chocolate bars were the least successful. The frosting just melted and essentially disappeared off of the doughnut. Don't get me wrong, we still ate them. They just weren't the top of the bacon-wrapped doughnut totem poll. Doughnuts were done in about 5-7 minutes.

CINNAMON ROLLS: We used prepared cimmanon roll dough. Simply unroll, lay on a strip of bacon, and roll back up. We secured the end with a toothpick just for safety's sake.

Our picture is left unfrosted so you can get a better view of the bacon inside, but definitely top with a hearty dose of frosting while still warm. We found the cinnamon rolls took the longest to bake of all the treats (about 15 minutes).

TWINKIES: Oh, yes. Yes, we did. And they were glorious, amazing, above all description. Warm and gooey inside, salty and bacon-laden outside. If these treats could scream, they would scream 'MERICA! They were perfectly done in 5-7 minutes.

MARSHMALLOW CRISPY TREATS: I would call these a failure, but to be completely honest we still ate all of them. The marshmallow treats melted nigh unto oblivion. Luckily, we cooked everything on a Frogmat so we just scraped up the gooey mixture, let it cool a little and devored it. Unless you like a messy drip pan, I wouldn't recommend these.

Does your Favorite Snack Taste Good with Bacon? Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Treat-Off!

Does your Favorite Snack Taste Good with Bacon? Traeger's Bacon Wrapped Treat-Off!

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Jalapeno Candied Smoked Salmon

Posted by Mary M. on August 8, 2014

Jalapeno Candied Smoked Salmon

Smoked salmon is a no-brainer. Candy is a no-brainer. ...you see where we're going with this. Although they're both dangerously delicious, this recipe is quite a bit different from our salmon jerky/Indian candy recipe. A little less chew and a lot more spice.

For those of you who love to work up a sweat while eating, you're gonna love what comes next. We are soaking, brushing and garnishing this fish with jalapenos. It's like having a cable subscription for Jalapeno TV - all jalapeno, all of the time. You control the dial so feel free to add more jalapenos for a more intense heat or even bump it up to a habanero, if you're feeling bold.

JALAPENO CANDIED SMOKED SALMON

PREP TIME: 3 to 4 hours to brine
COOK TIME: 1 hour 30 minutes
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Hickory, Mesquite or Maple
SERVES: 4 to 6

INGREDIENTS

Brine:
1 fillet salmon, pin bones removed
1/2 cup hot water
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons garlic powder
2 tablespoons ground black pepper
8 cups cold water
1 to 2 jalapenos, roughly chopped
Red pepper flakes, if desired

Jalapeno Glaze:
1 cup brown sugar
1 to 2 jalapenos
3 tablespoons dijon mustard

PREPARATION

In a small saucepan pour in the hot water and the jalapenos and red pepper flakes for the brine. Use as many jalapenos as you can handle and same goes for the red pepper flakes.

Bring the water to a boil and let the jalapenos steep in the hot water for about 5 minutes.

Add in the rest of the brine ingredients except for the cold water and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Pour in the cold water. Once the brine is no longer warm, pour it into a large resealable bag and add in the salmon.

Let the salmon sit in the brine in the fridge for 3 to 4 hours, depending on the thickness of the fillet.

When you're ready to start smoking take the salmon out of the brine, rinse off and pat dry.

Mix together the brown sugar, jalapenos and dijon mustard for the glaze in a blender or cuisinart and pulse until the jalapenos are fully incorporated.

Apply the glaze to the salmon.

Set Traeger to smoke with lid open until fire is established. Smoke salmon for 30 minutes (Skin-Side down).

Increase to 225°F-230°F. Cook salmon for 45 min-1 hour.

Jalapeno Candied Smoked Salmon

Time to serve up this spicy bite!

Jalapeno Candied Smoked Salmon

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Jalapeno Candied Smoked Salmon Recipe.docx (12.05 kb)

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