Smoked shotgun shells are a delicious and unique appetizer that are perfect for any occasion. These shells are typically made by stuffing uncooked manicotti noodle shells with a mixture of ground beef, spicy ground sausage, cream cheese, and shredded cheddar cheese, then wrapping them in bacon and smoking them on a pellet grill.
The result is a savory and smoky flavor that is sure to impress your guests. Whether you’re hosting a backyard barbecue, a game day party, or just looking for a fun and tasty appetizer to serve up at your next gathering, smoked shotgun shells are a great choice. With their combination of meat, cheese, and bacon, they are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
What are Smoked Shotgun Shells?
Smoked shotgun shells are a popular appetizer that can be made on a pellet smoker, grill, oven, or air fryer. They are made by stuffing uncooked manicotti noodle shells with a mixture of ground beef, spicy ground sausage, cream cheese, and shredded cheddar cheese, then wrapping them in bacon. The shells are then smoked or cooked until the bacon is crispy and the filling is cooked through.
These appetizers are perfect for any occasion and can be served hot or cold. They are a great addition to any party or gathering and are sure to be a hit with your guests. The combination of the crispy bacon and the savory filling makes for a delicious and satisfying bite.
When making smoked shotgun shells, it is important to use high-quality ingredients. The ground beef and spicy ground sausage should be seasoned well with your favorite spices and herbs. The cream cheese and shredded cheddar cheese should be of good quality and should be mixed well with the meat mixture.
Overall, smoked shotgun shells are a delicious and easy appetizer that can be made on a variety of cooking devices. They are perfect for any occasion and are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
How to Make Smoked Shotgun Shells
- 16 manicotti shells
- 1 lb. ground sausage
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup chopped pepperoni
- 8 slices of bacon
- 1/4 cup BBQ rub
- 1/4 cup BBQ sauce
- Cook the manicotti shells in salted water for 4-6 minutes to partially cook them.
- In a medium bowl, mix the sausage, pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese until just barely mixed.
- Stuff the manicotti shells with the sausage mixture using a piping bag or your hands.
- Wrap each stuffed shell with a slice of bacon, securing it with a toothpick.
- Sprinkle BBQ rub over the bacon-wrapped shells and brush with BBQ sauce.
- Preheat your smoker to 250°F and place the shells on the grill grates.
- Smoke the shells for 2-3 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 160°F.
- Alternatively, you can cook the shells in an oven or air fryer at 375°F for 25-30 minutes.
- For a smokier flavor, use wood pellets such as cherry wood or hickory.
- Serve the smoked shotgun shells as an appetizer or main dish.
- Top with additional BBQ sauce or marinara sauce.
- Serve with sliced jalapenos or peppers for added heat.
- Pair with a side salad or grilled vegetables.
- Calories: 332
- Fat: 18g
- Carbohydrates: 22g
- Protein: 19g
- Servings: 8
Smoked shotgun shells are a delicious and unique appetizer or main dish that is sure to impress your guests. With a perfectly cooked filling and well-incorporated flavors, this appetizer recipe is a crowd-pleaser. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Smoked Shotgun Shells Recipe Variations
If you’re a fan of smoked shotgun shells, you’ll be happy to know that there are plenty of variations to try out. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Bacon-Wrapped Smoked Shotgun Shells
For an extra smoky flavor, try wrapping your shotgun shells in thick-cut bacon before smoking them. The bacon will also add a nice crispy texture to the dish.
Smoked Manicotti Shells with Meat and Cheese Filling
If you’re looking for a heartier version of smoked shotgun shells, try using manicotti shells instead. Fill them with a mixture of ground sausage, shredded cheese, and your favorite seasonings before smoking.
Smoked Cannelloni Shells with BBQ Rub and Sauce
For a BBQ twist on smoked shotgun shells, use cannelloni shells and fill them with a mixture of shredded chicken, cream cheese, and your favorite BBQ rub and sauce.
Smoked Jalapeno and Cheddar Pasta Shells
If you like a little heat, try using jalapeno and cheddar pasta shells for your smoked shotgun shells. Fill them with a mixture of ground sausage, shredded cheese, and diced jalapenos before smoking.
Smoked Gouda and Apple Pasta Tubes
For a unique flavor combination, try using smoked gouda and apple pasta tubes for your smoked shotgun shells. Fill them with a mixture of ground sausage, shredded cheese, and diced apples before smoking.
Smoked Appetizer Platter
If you want to serve a variety of smoked appetizers, consider making a platter of different types of smoked shotgun shells. Mix and match different fillings and shells for a fun and flavorful appetizer spread.
Smoked Breakfast Sausage and Egg Cannelloni
For a breakfast twist on smoked shotgun shells, use cannelloni shells and fill them with a mixture of scrambled eggs, breakfast sausage, and shredded cheese before smoking.
Smoked Brisket and Cheese Stuffed Manicotti
For a decadent version of smoked shotgun shells, try using brisket and cheese stuffed manicotti. Fill the shells with shredded brisket and your favorite cheese before smoking.
Smoked BBQ Meat and Cheese Manicotti
For another BBQ twist on smoked shotgun shells, use manicotti shells and fill them with a mixture of shredded BBQ meat and cheese before smoking.
Smoked Jalapeno Popper Pasta Shells
For a spicier version of smoked shotgun shells, try using jalapeno popper pasta shells. Fill them with a mixture of cream cheese, diced jalapenos, and shredded cheese before smoking.
Smoked Pepperoni and Cheese Cannelloni
For a classic Italian flavor, try using pepperoni and cheese cannelloni for your smoked shotgun shells. Fill them with a mixture of diced pepperoni and shredded cheese before smoking.
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These are just a few of the many variations you can try for smoked shotgun shells. Experiment with different shells, fillings, and seasonings to find your perfect combination. Happy smoking!