If you’re anything like us, you’ll been firing up that grill all summer long!
On a hot summer day, there is nothing better than the smell of the BBQ wafting through the yard… except for the tasty food that comes off the grill!
Baked potatoes make a great side for steak or chicken, so why not try this loaded version that takes it to the next level?
The creamy inside is packed with flavour, the crispy bacon adding that “WOW” factor, and the gooey cheese topping it all off… YUM!
As with most of my recipes, this is easy to make and bound to impress next time you host dinner on your patio.
Baked potatoes typically take about an hour to cook fully, so you will have to plan ahead a bit.
First things first: choosing the right potato!
Russet potatoes are my first choice to use for baking because of their thick skin and starchy insides.
I have used Yukon Gold potatoes for baking as well, but the skin isn’t quite as thick and doesn’t get as crispy, which is part of the beauty of a baked potato.
I start by poking several holes in the potato in a few spots to help keep it from exploding while it cooks and allows steam to escape the skin.
Grill on medium heat (or bake at 375º) on the top rack for about an hour.
Some people say to wrap them in tin foil, however I just pop the potatoes in by themselves; this helps with that crunchy skin.
Check the “done-ness” by stabbing a fork or knife through the centre; it should slide easily into the potato with no hard parts left inside.
Once the potatoes are fully cooked, cut them in half long-wise and scoop out the insides (making sure not to damage the skins).
Next, whip the insides with cream cheese, garlic (you can use Garlic Plus or, as I prefer, roasted garlic), and crispy bacon (or bacon bits).
Salt and pepper to taste, then fill the skins with the mix.
You can top with your cheese of choice – I use cheddar as it browns so beautifully!
Place the potato halves on the top shelf of the grill again and allow the cheese to bubble into a nice golden-brown.
Once you remove the potatoes from the heat, garnish with green onions and/or fresh parsley for an extra-fancy presentation.
Stuffed mushrooms go well on the side or as an appetizer.
Pro tip: These also freeze well to be pre-made and thawed before hosting dinner; just allow enough time so they are fully thawed and place on the grill long enough to heat them thoroughly and finish browning the cheese.
2 large Russet potatoes
1/4 cup cream cheese
2 slices of bacon
2 roasted garlic cloves *or* 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Plus
1/2 cup cheddar cheese
Salt & pepper to taste
Green onions (garnish)
Pierce potatoes with fork or knife in several places, then place on pre-heated grill at medium heat (or in oven at 375º) on top rack for 1 hour or until tender in the centre.
Cut potatoes in half long-wise and remove insides, making sure to leave skins intact.
Mix insides well with cream cheese, bacon, salt & pepper.
Spoon mix back into the skins and top with cheddar cheese.
Place back on grill (or in oven) until the cheese has turned golden-brown.
Remove from heat and garnish with green onions and parsley.
Makes 4 halves