Bacon Wrapped Kielbasa Bites & Jalapeño Honey Mustard SauceMonday, June 16, 2014
A few blog posts ago I promised my readers I'd get back to cooking with bacon after my vegetarian recipe binge. Well, I'm excited to share a recipe that definitely delivers not only the bacon, but bacon wrapped sausage! Does it really get better than that? When Johnsonville Sausage asked me to create a summertime recipe, I couldn't resist doubling up on the pork in this fun appetizer. You may recall that I used Johnsonville's Split Rope Andouille Sausage in my Cajun Mac & Cheese recipe, one of my most popular posts to date! This time, I chose to work with their Polish Kielbasa Split Rope Sausage because it's reminiscent of the kind of sausages my dad often put on the grill for our family barbecues. These babies are packed with flavor using only premium cuts of pork, and unlike most other fully cooked sausages, Johnsonville uses absolutely no fillers for a juicy and firm texture and bite. So why hide all that real flavor in a bun? I wanted to let the Polish Kielbasa speak for itself, so I simply wrapped it in bacon and made a complementary spicy honey mustard sauce for dipping. This is an incredibly easy, crowd pleasing appetizer that can be prepped ahead of time. That's exactly the kind of break I need when I'm hosting an outdoor party!
Summer barbecues at our house are almost always out back, where my dad handles most of the grilling while the kids get some time in the pool. I tend to be in the kitchen preparing side dishes and dessert, and my mom helps out by greeting our guests and making sure things run smoothly. Because there's always a bit of time to kill until it's time to eat, I love the idea of having an appetizer ready when people start arriving! It's always nice to get a little bite of something with your beer or cocktail no matter where you happen to be. My recipe makes eight appetizer servings, or two Bacon Wrapped Kielbasa Bites per person. If you're just cooking for two, like I often am, the nice thing about Johnsonville's Split Rope Sausage is that it offers portion control packaging with two individually-wrapped sausages.
One of the main things I have to consider when planning a menu for a cookout is how to get everything done on time! It doesn't matter how well you schedule your day, because inevitably the potato salad needs more time to chill or the mac & cheese needs a little extra time to bake. My dad loves to give me a hard time when he's done grilling before I've put the finishing touches on my dishes. If you struggle a little bit with time management in the kitchen, you'll be happy to know that this is one dish you can prepare completely ahead of time. You can make the sauce a day or two before and even do your bacon wrapping the morning of or night before. These yummy bites bake in the oven, so you won't be tying up the grill for the main event. And because I'm always thinking of how I can make things easier, most of these ingredients are things you probably have in your pantry, if not already pulled out to use for other cookout dishes! So what are you waiting for? Bacon Wrapped Kielbasa Bites await at your next summertime party...
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 20 min
Equipment Needed: Baking sheet, toothpicks