These Traeger smoked potato skins make an amazing appetizer to smoke alongside your main dish.
We all know smoking meat can take a LONG time. I'm looking at you smoked brisket. So why not make yourself a snack while you wait.
Need some more great smoked appetizers? Try this smoked cream cheese with your favorite crackers or these smoked chicken wings.
These smoked potato skins absorb some amazing flavor from the grill and the low and slow cooking process allows the flavors to blend together as they are cooked.
Do you love potato skins? Try these BBQ Pulled Pork Potato Skins.
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Why You Will Love This Recipe
- These potato skins are so easy to make and are one of the quickest items you can smoke.
- Easily change the flavor by varying the toppings. See my suggestions below for ideas.
A few years ago we bought a Traeger grill during a Father's Day sale at our local hardware store. Initially, I was reluctant to spend the money on a second grill but it has been one of the best purchases we have ever made. Not only does it produce amazing results, but it’s also incredibly easy to operate!
I don't remember the last time we went out for barbeque because we get such great results at home for a fraction of the cost. I know our Traeger grill has already paid for itself with the money we have saved on eating out.
We love smoking a pork butt for pulled pork sandwiches, meatloaf, and whole chickens.
If you just purchased a Traeger grill check out the Trager website for help with getting started along with tips and tricks for getting the most out of your grill.
What is the Best Wood for Smoking Potato Skins?
When smoking potato skins, choose wood pellets with a complementary flavor. Because of their small size stick with lighter woods. Applewood, maple, and cherry are all good choices.
- Applewood has a subtle sweet fruity flavor.
- Maple also has a subtle sweet fruity flavor but is a bit stronger than applewood. It is the sweetest of the heavy woods.
- Cherry is similar in flavor to other fruitwoods.
Russet Potatoes: Russet potatoes are traditional when making potato skins. They have sturdy skins that are perfect for filling with all of the delicious toppings.
Use the potato insides for this roasted cauliflower soup, mashed potatoes, or these amazing twice-baked potato cups.
Olive Oil: Regular olive oil is just fine to use. Brushing the potatoes with olive oil helps to crisp the skin.
Salt: Salting potatoes before baking them draws out moisture creating a fluffy interior.
Seasoning: Change up the flavor of these potatoes or increase the heat by varying the chosen seasonings.
Cheese: I used shredded cheddar, but other cheeses like mozzarella, gouda, or pepper jack would work well too.
Toppings: Here is where you can really go crazy. For this recipe, I kept it simple with just sour cream, bacon, and chopped green onions. But the sky is the limit when it comes time to choose your toppings.
See the recipe card for quantities.
Smoker: While these potato skins could be smoked on any smoker the instructions are written specifically for a grill from Trager because it is what we own.
Pastry Brush: I am partial to silicone pastry brushes because they are heat resistant and dishwasher safe. I like them over bristled brushes because I don't have to worry about them leaving stray bristles behind.
Mixing Bowls: These are some of my favorite mixing bowls. They come in a huge range of sizes, nest together for easy storage, and are easy to clean.
Set the Traeger grill to Smoke, and leave the lid open for 4-5 minutes until the fire is established. Set the temperature to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and preheat with the lid closed for 10 to 15 minutes.
Wash and dry the potatoes. Using a fork prick the skin of the potatoes in several places. This allows steam to escape and keeps your baked potatoes from exploding. Trust me I have cleaned up that mess before.
Brush potatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
Arrange the potatoes directly on the grill grate and bake for about 1 hour until they are easily pierced with a fork.
Remove the potatoes and reduce the temperature to 225 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut the potatoes lengthwise into quarters.
Scoop out the insides until the potato skins are about ½ inch thick.
Brush with olive oil.
In a small bowl mix together the paprika, cayenne pepper, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and ¼ kosher salt. Sprinkle seasoning mix over both sides of the potato skins.
Smoke the potato skins for 20 to 40 minutes depending upon how smoky you like them.
Sprinkle with the cheddar cheese and continue smoking until the cheese melts.
Top with a dollop of sour cream, bacon, and green onions.
No Grill Or Smoker?
No Problem! These potato skins can also be baked in the oven.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Wash and dry the potatoes. Using a fork prick the skin of the potatoes in several places. This allows steam to escape and keeps your baked potatoes from exploding in the oven.
- Brush potatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
- Bake the potatoes on a wire cooling rack placed inside a rimmed baking sheet for 1 hour until they are easily pierced with a fork.
- Cut the potatoes lengthwise into quarters.
- Scoop out the insides until the potato skins are about ½ inch thick.
- Brush with olive oil.
- In a small bowl mix together the paprika, cayenne pepper, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and ¼ kosher salt. Sprinkle seasoning mix over both sides of the potato skins.
- Sprinkle with the cheddar cheese and continue baking until the cheese melts. This should take about 10 minutes.
- Top with a dollop of sour cream, bacon, and green onions.
- Amount: Easily scale this recipe up or down depending upon the number of potato skins you have or need.
- Spice: Add chili powder to the seasoning mix and substitute pepper jack for the cheddar cheese to increase the spice level.
- Deluxe: Add additional toppings like guacamole, crispy onions, pesto, crumbled bacon, steamed broccoli, pulled pork, and more...
Note: When serving the smoked potato skins only put sour cream on the ones you know you will eat. Storing potato skins after they have been topped with sour cream can make them mushy and difficult to reheat.
Store leftover potato skins in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days.
To reheat: Microwave the potato skins on high for 30 to 60 seconds. For crispier potato skins bake in a 350 degree Fahrenheit oven for a few minutes.
Frequently Asked Questions
A fully cooked potato will have wrinkly papery skin on the outside and have some give when you squeeze it. You can also insert a knife or fork into the potato. If there is little to no resistance the potato is done.
Using an instant-read thermometer is also a great way to see if a smoked potato is done. The internal temperature of a fully cooked potato should be at least 210 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Choose similar-sized potatoes so they will have similar baking times.
- If your potatoes do bake unevenly, remove the fully baked potatoes and leave the undercooked ones in the oven for a few minutes longer.
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Just got a new smoker and found this recipe. These turned out great. Really good side dish for any occassion. Will make again soon.