Smoked Texas Twinkies: A Delicious Texas-Style Recipe

July 28, 2023
Written by Kristy J. Norton

Smoked Texas Twinkies are perfect if you love bacon and some spice. These Twinkies are entire jalapenos that have been packed with a cream cheese filling that includes chopped brisket and is seasoned with barbecue rub. They are then wrapped in thin-cut bacon and smoked at high temperatures. The outcome is a perfect balance of sweet, savory, and salty flavors!

I love making these spicy snacks at cookouts. They're affordable and easy to prepare, and I'm sure my guests will enjoy them. Continue reading to find out how to make this special smoked Texas Twinkies recipe.

smoked texas twinkies

How to Make Texas Twinkies?

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of chopped brisket: For this dish, use pulled, smoked brisket. You'll love the perfect, succulent flavor. Feel free to use leftover chopped brisket mixture.
  • 12 slices of bacon: Use thinly sliced bacon because the fat renders quickly and it cooks much faster.
  • 12 large jalapenos: Pick large-sized jalapenos that are vibrant and firm. Avoid peppers that are soft or wrinkled.
  • 1 cup of shredded cheese: Although pepper Jack cheese also works for this recipe, I like to use Monterey Jack.
  • 16 oz. of softened cream cheese: Softened cream cheese makes this recipe creamy and flavorful. The creaminess complements the pepper's spiciness.
  • 1 teaspoon of barbecue rub: I used the Salt Lick Dry BBQ rub for this recipe. That said, you can always use any rub of your choice.
  • 1 tablespoon of barbecue sauce: The barbecue sauce is brushed on the Texas Twinkie last and allowed to smoke, giving them a tasty, caramelized flavor. Any sweet barbecue sauce will taste great for this recipe. That said, I use Kraft’s Sweet Rub here.
Shredded Brisket, Sliced Jalapenos and Other Ingredients

Instructions

Step 1: Cut the Brisket

The first step is to chop up your smoked brisket into small chunks. Make sure the smoked brisket is small enough to fit inside the jalapeno.

Step 2: Core the Jalapenos

Next, core the jalapenos and remove the membrane and seeds. You could also cut the peppers in half and remove the seeds. Next, wash your cut jalapeno peppers in some running water and set them aside. Leave a few seeds in the peppers if you like want hotter twinkies. You could also mix the seeds in with your filling later if you like.

Step 3: Prepare the Filling

Now, it’s time to make the delicious cream cheese filling. Combine the cream cheese, your thinly cut brisket, and a cup of shredded Jack cheese in a large mixing bowl. After that, add a tablespoon of barbecue rub. I used Salt Lick dry rub for this recipe. Make sure you thoroughly mix all the ingredients.

Step 4: Stuff the Jalapenos

Add the cream cheese mixture into a piping bag. Then, pipe the cream cheese mixture into each jalapeno pepper. Remember, do not overfill the peppers, or else they will spill out and make a mess in the smoker.

Next, wrap the stuffed peppers with a bacon strip and use a toothpick to attach the strip to the jalapeno. Afterward, place the creamy jalapenos in the cooker. You could arrange the twinkies directly on the smoker. However, I found that placing them on a wire rack before putting them in the smoker made them easier to remove.

Step 5: Smoking Time!

Start your smoker and preheat it to about 350 degrees Fahrenheit. I add some pecan wood for a mild smoky flavor, but you can always use any wood you like. The high temperature of the smoker will make the bacon strips crispy and add a savory flavor to the melted cheese filling.

Smoke the twinkies for 30 minutes and slather them with barbecue sauce. Then close the lid and continue smoking for 10 more minutes. Take the twinkies out of the smoker and let them rest for 5 to 10 minutes. The twinkies should feel soft and crunchy, and the bacon should not be extremely charred. Lastly, dish up your Texas twinkies and enjoy.

Extra Smoking Tips

Make sure you wear gloves when handling the jalapenos.

  • Use the tip of the brisket for the recipe. Why? the tip is typically the fatty part of the cut, so it yields more tender results. Also, slice the brisket thinly so that it can fit into the large peppers.
  • Whisk the cream cheese mixture if you want a fluffier filling.
  • Make sure you leave the stem of the jalapeno intact when you core or slice the peppers. The stem makes preparing and eating the peppers much easier.
  • If you're a lover of bacon, feel free to wrap the jalapeno poppers with two or more bacon strips. Not only will this make the appetizer more delicious, but it will also prevent the moisture from spilling all over the smoker.
  • You can always add more ingredients to the filling to suit your taste buds. You can use chopped vegetables or add a different type of cheese like cheddar cheese.
  • When reheating your Texas twinkies, brush them with BBQ sauce for a more tasty dish.
Jalapenos That Have Been Packed with a Cream Cheese Filling and Wrapped in thin-cut Bacon

What Are Texas Twinkies?

Smoked Texas Twinkies are jalapenos stuffed with chopped brisket mixture in a cream cheese filling. The brisket ingredient gives the snack a meatier mouthfeel. Note that you can also use other meat cuts instead of brisket. I've used beef chuck and pulled pork, and they both tasted amazing.

Finally (to achieve a beautiful smokey yet crunchy texture on the outside) the Smoked Texas Twinkies are completely wrapped in thinly cut bacon and smoked on high heat. Yum! 

How to Store Texas Twinkies?

Your Texas twinkies can last in the fridge for up to a week and can be frozen for up to six months. Simply wrap them in cling film and place them in an airtight bag before storing them in the fridge or freezer. Once you're ready to reheat the twinkies, remove them from the freezer and place them in the fridge for 24 hours. This technique will thaw the twinkies perfectly, making them supple when reheated.

How to Reheat Twinkies?

You can reheat Texas twinkies in an air fryer, microwave, or oven. To reheat the twinkies in an air fryer, fry at 350 degrees for 5–10 minutes. I love using a fryer because it guarantees a crispy and delicious crust. Reheating twinkies in an oven is also straightforward.

Simply place them on a baking tray and bake for 10–15 minutes at 350°F. Lastly, you can microwave your tasty twinkies for 4 minutes (2 minutes for each side) on the high setting.

Can I Make Texas Twinkies Ahead of Time?

Fortunately, you can make your twinkies ahead of time. This can make it quicker to cook these tasty snacks, especially if you have a lot of hungry guests.

Simply make the filling first and refrigerate it a day or two before you want to use it. When you're ready to use it, cut the jalapenos, stuff them, wrap them in bacon, and smoke them.

You can prepare the twinkies and store them raw in the freezer. When you're ready to smoke them, remove them from the freezer and thaw them for 24 hours in the refrigerator. Now, you're ready to smoke your tasty twinkies and enjoy.

Can I Reduce the Heat of the Jalapenos?

You can reduce the spiciness of jalapenos if you don't like the heat. The first way to lessen the heat of the peppers involves boiling them. Bring a big saucepan of water to a boil and add deseeded jalapenos and 2 tablespoons of sugar.

Let the mix cook for 5 minutes, then run the jalapenos through ice-cold water. Drain the water and use it for this tasty recipe.

The second way to reduce the heat of your jalapenos is by removing the seeds and using them in the recipe. This step takes less time but doesn't work as well as the first technique.

Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers

Can I Cook Texas Twinkies in An Oven?

Yes, you can cook these tasty snacks in an oven. Set the oven to 400 degrees and place the twinkies on a baking sheet.

The bacon will crisp up nicely if you place the Texas Twinkies on a baking sheet. Preferably, use one with a wire rack and place another baking sheet underneath to catch any dripping juices. Bake the appetizer at this temperature for 20 to 30 minutes, and take it out once it's brown to your liking. Don't forget to apply BBQ sauce 10 minutes before you take the twinkies out the oven.

How to Serve Smoked Texas Twinkies?

You can serve these smoked twinkies in several ways and pair them with numerous side and main dishes. My preferred way of serving these jalapeno snacks is by letting them cool, then serving them whole so they can be held by the stem and eaten. Alternatively, you can serve these snacks by slicing them into smaller pieces that are easy to eat.

Moving on, if you're looking for the best dishes to eat with Texas twinkies, I recommend:

  • Coleslaw
  • Macaroni Salad
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Corn dip
  • Rice
  • Baked beans

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does the Size of the Peppers Affect How They Cook?

Yes, the size of the jalapenos affects how the twinkies cook. I typically use large jalapeno peppers because they are easier to stuff. To allow the peppers to cook at the same time, I recommend using peppers of the same size.

2. Can I Make This Dish With Thick-cut Bacon?

Of course! Thicker bacon tastes meatier and has more depth. However, using thin-cut bacon reduces the cooking time required to make these tasty appetizers. So, if you have a lot of time, you can use thick-cut bacon. That said, I’ll be sticking with thinly cut bacon.

3. Can I Grill Texas Twinkies?

These can be made on the grill if you don't have a smoker. Bear in mind that the grill will smoke a lot as the bacon renders. Preheat the grill to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Then arrange the Texas Twinkies on a baking sheet with a rack and place them directly on the grill. Cook for 40 to 45 minutes, or until cheese is bubbling and bacon has rendered.

Carefully remove the twinkies from the grill grates and brush some barbeque sauce on them. Lastly, broil the Texas twinkies under the broiler for about 5 minutes until the barbecue sauce sets on the exterior.

Conclusion

This Texas Twinkies recipe is perfect if you love hot, smokey flavors. These bacon-wrapped, barbecue-seasoned stuffed jalapenos are packed with a rich blend of cream cheese, smoky brisket, and Jack cheese.

The ingredients come together to produce a smooth, savory, and tasty dish. Moreover, you can also experiment with the ingredients and try something new. Try this recipe at your next cookout, and I guarantee your guests will love it.

By Kristy J. Norton
I'm Kristy – a chef and connoisseur of all things BBQ! You can find me either in my kitchen (or someone else's) or at a big outdoor barbecue surrounded by friends and family. In both my professional and personal life I’ve picked up more than a few tips and tricks for turning out delicious food. I consider it a privilege to share it with others!
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