Smoked cream cheese is one of the easiest and most delicious appetizer recipes out there. If you haven’t tried this one yet, then you are in for a treat!
Yes, we jumped at the chance to try out this trending smoked cream cheese, and let’s just say we were skeptical at first, but wow, was it delicious! If you need an appetizer for your next barbecue, consider giving this smoky, creamy, delicious recipe a try. Don’t worry, this smoked cream cheese isn’t over the top smoky. We were able to strike the perfect balance of smoke to creamy goodness in just 2 hours.
What you’ll need:
One 9″ x 9″ disposable aluminum pan
An 8 ounce package of cream cheese
1- 1 1/2 tablespoons barbecue rub
Typically, this recipe is seasoned with dry ranch dressing seasoning mix or dry onion soup mix. You can certainly go that route, but we wanted a more BBQ flavor profile for our smoked cream cheese. We used our popular Kansas City Rub for this recipe. Trust us when we say that you’ll want to make up a good amount of this rub to keep on hand. It’s one of our favorites to use on ribs and low and slow pork shoulder.
How to make smoked cream cheese:
Gather your ingredients. We recommend using regular, full-fat cream cheese, and cannot comment on how well low-fat, whipped, or light cream cheese will turn out. Our guess is that the lighter versions will release water as it cooks, and that could interfere with the smoking process.
Next up is the rub. Use your favorite bottled sweet rub or use one of our rub recipes. To make serving and clean up a breeze, we suggest using a disposable aluminum pan. You can also use doubled up sheets of aluminum foil.
Prepare your grill or smoker for 200 degrees F. We used a pellet smoker for this recipe, and it worked beautifully. If you want to add extra wood chips, we recommend maple, alder, or oak. For smoked cream cheese with a little more zazz, use hickory or mesquite wood, or a mixture of milder and heavier wood flavors.
Apply the Rub:
Carefully remove the cream cheese from the foil packets and place it directly into the aluminum pan. Sprinkle with 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons of barbecue rub. We seasoned the top only, but you can apply the rub onto the sides as well.
Into the Smoker:
Next, place the entire pan with seasoned cream cheese into the smoker. Close the lid and let it go for about 2 hours. Keep a close eye on the temperature gauge, as some smoker temps can fluctuate. You don’t want it getting any hotter than 220 degrees, or else you might end up with a puddle of melted cream cheese.
Smoke time and doneness:
Check on it after 2 hours. You’ll notice a little cracking on the top of the cream cheese, and if you gently nudge the pan, the cream cheese will jiggle. This is normal! The sides of the cream cheese will turn a yellowish, golden brown color. Once it looks this way, your smoked cream cheese is done. Time to serve this up!
Remove smoked cream cheese from the smoker and let it rest for 10-15 minutes. It will be hot, so keep this in mind before digging in. We tried this with corn chips, but you can serve this smoked appetizer with crackers, bagel chips, or chopped vegetables like carrots, celery, or jicama.
Better yet, use it in sandwiches or as a bagel spread. This smoked cream cheese is so versatile and incredibly delicious. Happy eating!
Like this recipe? Try our Smoked Cream Cheese Dessert
Smoked Cream Cheese
- 8 ounces cream cheese full fat
- 1- 1 1/2 tablespoons Kansas City Rub or your favorite bottled sweet rub
- 1 disposable aluminum pan 9" x 9"
- Prepare your grill or smoker for 200 degrees F. Use your favorite pellet or add wood chips or chunks of choice.
- Place unwrapped cream cheese into the pan, and season with BBQ rub.
- Place the pan with cream cheese into the smoker, close the lid and let it go for 2 hours. If you'd like it a little smokier, let it go an extra half an hour.
- Once the cream cheese has a golden color and has cracked at the top, it is done.
- Remove from the grill, let stand for 10 minutes and dig in.