I got started early Saturday morning putting together the Smokin’ Hickory Meatloaf recipe, and the Smokey & Fruity Baked Beans recipe. Once I got all the slicing, dicing and mixing out of the way, it was on to get the smoker going and brought up to temperature.
Tip: It’s important to always bring your smoker to the temperature you plan to cook at before you put the meat or side dish in. You don’t want to be doing this while the foods in.
Tip: It’s also important to bring the food close to room temperature before putting it into the smoker. This will keep from the temperature dropping way off for a long time after putting it into the smoker. Just don’t forget the food safety rule of not keeping meat between 40 and 140 for more than 4 hours.
I used all hickory for this cook. I brought the smoker up to 250 degrees, and put both pans in. After only about 10 minutes, it was back up to 250 degrees, and we were smoking!
After the first 30 minutes, I opened the smoker and gave the beans a quick stir. Just to make sure things weren’t sticking. Plus I wanted to make sure the meat was holding together okay.
Tip: You don’t want to dawdle, or as we say in Texas, you don’t want to lollygag around for too long while you have the smoker opened. For more about this, read my article called “Tips for Maintaining a Fire in Your Smoker“.
Note: The meatloaf is actually considered done at an internal temperature of 160 degrees, but I’m not fond of pink burger, so I brought it up to 175 degrees to insure that it was fully cooked.
The next time I make this, I plan to put the rub on the top much heavier to achieve somewhat of a bark. I only lightly sprinkled it this time. Just another layer of flavor! Right?
Now, doesn’t this look mighty tasty? Let me tell you, it was! The nacho cheese flavored Doritos used instead of the standard bread crumbs to hold things together gave it an amazing taste. A real Mexican cheesy flare!
That’s it. Don’t be shy. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to ask!