These easy Lil’ Smokies sausages wrapped in bacon are one of our favorite party food recipes, especially when we’re in the mood to hog all the compliments (no pun intended) on game day gatherings or at the buffet table.
This delicious appetizer is also known as “bacon wrapped weenies,” or you can simply call them “Meat Covered in Meat.” Savory little smokies sausages are wrapped in bacon, cooked to crispy perfection, brushed with barbecue sauce and broiled until they’re lightly glazed.
We love making bacon finger food for a party, like our I Heart Bacon Appetizers, Tater Tots and Bacon Cheese Bites and Bacon Deviled Eggs. Be sure to check out our roundup of 52 Best Bacon Appetizer Recipes!
Take a plate of these smoky bacon wraps to your next picnic or potluck, and bask in the bacon-infused love from your friends.
The Best Bacon for Wrapping
Thin-sliced bacon is perfect for this recipe. By the time the bacon bakes in the oven to a crispy, golden brown, the juicy sausages are perfectly cooked.
Ever wondered how many slices are in a pound of thin-sliced bacon? The number is usually between 20 and 24. See? You really do learn something new every day.
Center cut bacon is especially ideal for this recipe, and that’s what I used for this batch because I wanted it to photograph well. Each short piece covers 2 Little Smokies sausages (with a few trimmings that I fry up for bacon bits).
Regular bacon works just fine, but the end pieces can be a little unpredictable in terms of curling and shrinkage. Feel free to use whatever bacon you prefer!
Best BBQ Sauce for Glazing Lil Smokies
Whether you like your barbeque sauce tangy, sweet, or spicy, anything goes with this recipe so choose your favorite!
Tomato-based, vinegar-based or mustard-based barbecue sauces will all taste fantastic, and each will bring out distinctive flavors of the savory sausage links and bacon strips.
Want more saucy ideas? Here’s a guide to 12 regional barbecue sauce styles.
Assembling the Appetizers
The preparation couldn’t be easier. Just wrap the bacon around the sausages leaving an overlap of about 3/4 inch for shrinkage during cooking. Arrange on the baking sheet seam side down. You don’t need to secure with toothpicks at this point (unless you want to).
Bake in a 350 degree F oven until browned and crispy. The total time will vary depending on your bacon’s thickness, but in my oven it took about 35 minutes.
Remove from the heat, turn your oven to the Broil setting, and brush the little smokies with barbecue sauce.
Return to the oven and broil just until sauce bubbles, about 1 minute or so. Remove from oven, cool on a rack for at least 5 minutes, and insert toothpicks before serving.
How to Grill Little Smoky Bacon Wraps
If you want to grill these tasty bacon hors d’oeuvres, just put them on a greased foil pan and cook them over medium heat.
Check and turn frequently until they’re golden brown. Remove from the oven and brush with your favorite barbeque sauce. Return to the oven, cook a minute or two longer, and serve.
Variation: Brown Sugar Recipe
Instead of glazing the appetizers with barbecue sauce, try this variation: little smokies wrapped in bacon brown sugar recipe.
Put 3/4 cup packed brown sugar (either light or dark is fine) in a large bowl and use your hands to crumble the sugar and make it smooth. Roll the uncooked, bacon-wrapped little smokies in the sugar. (Alternately, you can sprinkle brown sugar over the little smokies wrapped in bacon, patting to adhere.) Arrange on the parchment-lined baking sheet.
If you like your small bites HOT, you can also sprinkle with a little cayenne pepper.
Then, bake in a 350 degree F oven until browned and crispy. If you like, you can turn the appetizers over once during baking for even browning.
Leftover Cranberry Sauce? Try This Variation
For a delicious sweet-tangy flavor, use cranberry sauce instead of the BBQ sauce in the recipe. If you prefer a smooth glaze, puree the sauce in a food processor or blender if you prefer a smooth glaze.
By the way, whole berry and homemade cranberry sauce can be frozen in a sealed container for up to 3 months. The canned, jellied cranberry sauce does not freeze well and loses its texture when thawed.
How to Store and Reheat Bacon Lil Smokies
We’ve never had any leftovers and you probably won’t, either. But if you do, you can tightly wrap the appetizers and refrigerate for 2 to 3 days.
To reheat, spread on a baking sheet and cook in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 8-10 minutes, until sizzling.
Keto Little Smokies Appetizers
If you’re following a low-carb diet, you may be wondering “Are smokies keto friendly?” or “How many carbs are in Smokies?”
The good news is that most small smoked sausages are both low-carb and keto friendly.
According to Carb Manager, 5 links of little smokies beef sausages contain 1g total carbs, 1g net carbs, 11g fat, 8g protein, and 140 calories. Be sure to check your package label to be sure that your brand is low carb.
Here’s the easy recipe, which is adapted from the cookbook 101 Things To Do With Bacon by Eliza Cross (Gibbs Smith, Publisher). This recipe is also featured as a web story.
Bacon Wrapped Little Smokies
- 1 14-ounce package beef cocktail wieners
- 1 pound regular sliced center-cut bacon
- 1/3 cup barbecue sauce of your choice*
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Wrap each cocktail wiener with a piece of bacon and arrange on the baking sheet seam side down.
- Bake, turning several times, for about 40 minutes, or until the bacon is crispy and brown.
- Remove from the oven and turn on the broiler. Brush the bacon-wrapped little smokies all over with barbecue sauce. Return to oven and broil for about 1 minute, until barbecue sauce bubbles.
- Remove to a wire rack and cool on pan for at least 5 minutes. Skewer with toothpicks, arrange on a tray and serve.
If you enjoy this recipe for Lil Smokies sausages wrapped in bacon, we’d be thrilled if you clicked the little stars above and gave the recipe a 5-star rating.
For more delicious meat wrapped in meat, try our popular recipe for Smoked Pork Tenderloin Wrapped in Bacon! And for the perfect side dishes from top bloggers, check out our roundup of 15 tasty side dishes to serve with bacon-wrapped scallops (that also taste great with lil’ smokies!)
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~Your friends at BENSA