• amyrobertson

2 meal prep ideas for your smoker grill

Gear up for National Cooking Day! Try out these easy ways to cook meat on your smoker grill.

Smoker grill with chicken thighs cooking

At our house, we have a Traeger wood pellet smoker grill. If you have one as well, or another type of wood pellet smoker grill, you have got to try these easy meal ideas. Let’s get right to it!


1) Smoked chicken thighs


Prepare the grill:

  • Heat the grill to 225 degrees F

Prepare the chicken:

  • Use a large dish and place one layer of chicken thighs on it (I use a 9”x13” glass baking dish).

  • Season side one, then flip each over and season side two (See image below with my favorite seasoning blend for chicken). Add another layer of thighs and repeat. Typically I smoke 2 packs which ends up being 8-10 thighs.

Two packages of raw chicken and a jar of seasoning mix
Two packages of chicken and my favorite chicken seasoning: Kickin' Chicken Finger Lickin' by The Gourmet Collection
Raw chicken thighs in a glass dish being seasoned

Cooking instructions:

  • Add the thighs to the grill and smoke for two hours

  • After two hours is up, remove chicken from the grill and let rest for about 10 minutes before eating

A person placing chicken thighs on the grill to cook

Make it a meal:

  • Cut up a chicken thigh and add it to your salad.

  • Serve a chicken thigh with a side of veggies and half an avocado (sprinkle “Everything but the Bagel” seasoning on the avocado, yum!)

Fully cooked chicken thighs in a glass dish
The finished product!
Dinner plate with chicken thigh, broccoli and half an avocado
Make it a meal: A smoked chicken thigh with roasted broccoli and half an avocado (sprinkled with “Everything but the Bagel” seasoning)


2) Salsa burgers


Prepare the grill:

  • Heat the grill to 225 degrees F


Prepare the burgers:

  • In a large bowl, add two pounds of ground beef and ½ cup of salsa (I like to use salsa verde). Combine until salsa is incorporated.

  • Weigh the total amount of the meat mixture in grams. Take that total and divide by the number of burgers you want. For two pounds of beef, I make 8 burgers. Today, the weight of the meat mixture is 1,070 grams, that means each burger needs to be 133-134 grams.

  • Weigh out globs of the meat mixture 8 times until you have equal portions. This may seem like a silly step, but I love having 8 equal portion sizes.

  • Form the burger patties.

  • Season the patties with salt and pepper. I only season one side.

Two pounds of ground beef, a jar of salsa verde, and a half-cup measuring cup.
I start with two pounds of ground beef and mix in a half-cup of salsa.
Ground beef and salsa getting mixed together in a large stainless steel bowl.
Combine the ground hamburger and salsa in a large mixing bowl. I like to use my "ground meat stomper" to mix it all together.
Eight equal portions of the ground meat mixture on plates.
The weight of the meat mixture weighs 1,070 grams, that means each burger needs to be 133-134 grams (1070 divided by 8). I weighed out each meat glob so I have 8 equal burgers.
Two hands forming a glob of hamburger into a nicely formed patty shape.
Form the burger patties so they have an even edge and the same thickness throughout the patty (for even cooking).

Cooking instructions:

  • Add the burgers to the grill and smoke for 30 minutes.

  • Turn up the grill to 450 degrees. Once the grill reaches 400 degrees, set a timer and cook an additional 10 minutes.

  • Remove burgers from the grill and let rest for about 10 minutes before eating.

Hand placing raw burger patties on the smoker grill.
Fully cooked hamburger patties in a glass container.
The finished product!

Make it a meal:

  • Serve patty on a plate with a side of raw veggies and dip, along with some olives

A dinner plate with a hamburger patty, green olives, radishes, broccoli and dip.
Make it a meal: A hamburger patty served with green olives, radishes, broccoli and dip.

I hope you find these recipes as enjoyable as I do! Thank you for visiting my blog.


Please note: I have no affiliation with any brands pictured or mentioned in this post.


Please contact me at amy@ardesignsolutions.com or 763-400-9345 if you need freelance graphic design or marketing support.

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