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Smoked Shotgun Shells

In the realm of culinary creativity, there are recipes that push boundaries and redefine expectations. One such recipe that combines innovation and indulgence is the Smoked Shotgun Shells recipe. While the name might evoke thoughts of firearms, fear not, as this recipe is all about culinary delight and tantalizing taste buds.


  • 1 box (12 ounces) of medium pasta shells
  • 1 pound of smoked sausage, sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) of diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 cup of shredded cheese (cheddar or mozzarella works well)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh parsley for garnish


Prepare the Pasta:

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Add the pasta shells and cook according to the package instructions until al dente.
  • Drain the pasta and set aside.

Cook the Smoked Sausage:

  • In a large skillet or frying pan, cook the sliced smoked sausage over medium heat until browned and slightly crispy.
  • Remove the sausage from the pan and set aside, leaving any rendered fat in the pan.

Sauté the Onion and Garlic:

  • In the same skillet, add the chopped onion and minced garlic.
  • Sauté until the onion is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add the Tomatoes and Chicken Broth:

  • Stir in the diced tomatoes (with their juices) and chicken broth.
  • Bring the mixture to a simmer and let it cook for 5 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.

Combine the Ingredients:

  • Add the cooked pasta shells and browned smoked sausage to the skillet.
  • Stir in the heavy cream and shredded cheese, mixing until everything is well combined and the cheese is melted.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Smoke Infusion:

  • Now comes the fun part! To infuse the dish with a smoky flavor, transfer the pasta mixture to a smoker or grill set up for indirect heat.
  • Place a tray of wood chips (hickory, apple, or cherry wood works well) on the heat source to generate smoke.
  • Cover the smoker or grill and let the pasta mixture smoke for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure even smoke distribution.

Serve and Enjoy:

  • Once the pasta shells have absorbed the smoky essence, remove the dish from the smoker or grill.
  • Garnish with fresh parsley for a pop of color and added freshness.
  • Serve the smoked shotgun shells hot and savor the unique combination of flavors and textures.


Can I use different types of pasta for this recipe?
Absolutely! While the recipe calls for medium pasta shells, you can experiment with other pasta shapes such as penne, rigatoni, or fusilli to suit your preferences.


Can I substitute the smoked sausage with another protein?
Yes, feel free to swap the smoked sausage with cooked chicken, shrimp, or even vegetarian options like tofu or chickpeas for a different flavor profile.

Do I need a smoker to make this recipe?
While a smoker adds an extra layer of flavor, you can achieve a similar result by using a grill set up for indirect heat and adding wood chips for smoke. Alternatively, you can skip the smoking step altogether and still enjoy a delicious pasta dish.


Can I prepare this dish ahead of time?
Yes, you can assemble the pasta mixture ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to smoke and serve. Simply cover the dish with foil and reheat in the smoker or oven until heated through.

How long will leftovers last?
Leftover smoked shotgun shells can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. To reheat, simply microwave or reheat in a skillet until warmed through, adding a splash of broth or cream to revive the sauce if needed.



The Smoked Shotgun Shells recipe is a testament to the creativity and versatility of culinary exploration. By infusing the dish with smoky goodness, ordinary pasta shells are transformed into a gourmet delight that is sure to impress even the most discerning palates. So gather your ingredients, fire up the smoker, and embark on a culinary journey that will leave you craving more with every bite.


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