I’m not sure about you, but in our family, we like to add a a bit of kick to our BBQ. We have quite a large veggie patch which includes copious amounts of chillis. Using a cold smoke generator, we infuse the chillies with a delicious smokey flavour, dehydrate the chillies and then grind them up into chilli flakes.

What you’ll need:

Smoking chillies using a ​​​​​cold smoke generator is a different process to traditional smoking of ribs, brisket, pork etc. Rather than cooking the food with heat during the smoking process, smoking using a cold smoke generator smokes the food without any heat. While I put my cold smoke generator inside one of my other smokers to smoke chillies, cold smoking works equally as well inside any container. Many people use old fridges for cold smoking because they have a great seal around the door and they already have racks inside.

There are quite a few different styles of cold smoke generators with my personal favourite being the EZ Smoker. This works by lighting one end of the cold smoker tray and the wood smoking pellets gradually smouldering and continuing to burn around the maze. Burn time varies depending on what kind of pellets you are using, however you should be able to get 12 - 16 hours out of one fully loaded smoking tray.

How to cold smoke your own chillies:

  • Wash and dry the chillies
  • Lay the chillies on the racks
  • Add pellets into the cold smoke generator and light
  • Allow the chillies to smoke for at least 24 hours
  • Dry the chillies out in a dehydrator for 24 hours or in your own at the lowest possible temperature until the chillies are dry and brittle
  • Once the chillies are dry, remove the stems from the chillies
  • Grind the chillies in a grinder to the desired consistency.

Once you’ve smoked your first batch of chillies, you will be surprised how many chillies are needed to make just one jar of chilli flakes. Don’t be deterred though. It is truly satisfying smoking your own produce and of course you just can’t compare the flavour with store bought chilli flakes.

Hint: Don’t waste your hard earned smoked chilli flakes on meat that you’re going to smoke anyway. You won’t notice any additional smokey taste anyway. Save the smoked chilli for foods that you don’t cook in the smoker.

If you like the idea of cold smoking, I strongly recommend cold smoking cheese. Check out our previous post showing how to cold smoke cheese

We have also previously written an article describing all the different types of smokers available and the pros and cons of each. Click here to check it out.

Check out more delicious smoking recipes and How to guides
Want to take your barbecuing to the next level? Why not consider attending one of our BBQ Masterclasses It's an action packed day including all you can eat BBQ. 

Rhiannon Peterson   By: Rhiannon Peterson

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