Oh how I do love cooking Twinkies on my Char-Broil Big Easy. They’re the world’s easiest dessert. And they can be topped with darn near anything you have in the pantry, fridge or freezer. The Twinkies only take a few minutes to get a nice little crunch on the outside, while the insides get all oooey gooey. I topped my loaded roasted Twinkies with Nutella, marshmallows, whipped cream, toffee and for a hint of healthy, some fresh strawberries. Spreading a bit of Nutella on the Twinkies first gives the remaining ingredients something to hold onto. They don’t slide off and into the pan. Now, I’m not saying that if they did slide off that it’d be the end of world, no, but loaded roasted Twinkies need to be mounded with toppings. The more, the better.
It just occurred to me the other day. I have never cooked chicken legs by themselves on my Char-Broil Big Easy. I’ve done plenty of whole chickens, and tons of wings and breasts, but never legs. What the heck was I thinking? I immediately set out to remedy that situation. These Kick’N chicken legs came out fantastic, just like all the other poultry I’ve ever cooked on the Big Easy. Super moist and tender, and thanks to Weber’s Kick’N seasoning, nice and spicy! You won’t end up with crispy skin when you make these Kick’N chicken legs, but you will end up with delicious meat bite after bite. I’d say I used the right amount of the seasoning because I do prefer a little kick to my chicken, but not so much that I’m balled up on the floor crying. These legs were fantastic and spiced perfectly.
Cauliflower is something we make often on the Big Easy. It takes absolutely no time at all to prepare and always comes out perfect. In the past I’ve roasted entire heads of cauliflower in the Big Easy. The only trick to using a whole head of cauliflower is that you have to make sure you buy one that’ll fit into the Big Easy basket. This time (aka Version 2.0) I thought I’d try using florets instead. And for a little color and ‘ahhhhh’ factor, I used a combination of purple and orange cauliflower. Topped with what has become our house-favorite seasoning, Casa Seasoning from AlbuKirky Seasonings, this cauliflower was tender and tasty. Perfect. To keep the florets from failing thru the Big Easy baskets I lined them foil. With the addition of two bunk bed baskets you could easily cook a good-sized head of cauliflower. You can also use this same recipe for making broccoli.
Roasted Cauliflower Version 2.0 on the Char-Broil Big Easy
Recipe type: Side
Serves: 4 servings
Too cook a medium head of cauliflower all at once I used two bunk bed baskets, both lined with foil. You could get by with a single bunk bed basket and then also line the bottom of the Big Easy basket with foil.
1 medium head cauliflower, steamed or boiled until just softened
Note: I prefer to remove the florets from the cauliflower and then steam them. You can also boil them, but steaming them isn't as violent so they tend to stay together. Also, if you are using purple or orange cauliflower boiling tends to remove some of the color.
Fire up your Big Easy.
Lay a single layer of foil inside the basket and/or bunk bed baskets.
Add the cauliflower in a single layer. Try to not over-crowd too much. A little is ok, but stacking them won't result in even roasting.
Lower the basket into the cooker and cook for 10-20 minutes depending on how done you want your cauliflower.
Remove and let cool slightly before seasoning with your favorite seasoning and serving.
Roasted chicken on the Char-Broil Big Easy is something I could make and eat all day long. I never get tired of it. I usually make split chicken breasts or whole chickens. This time I used a great off-the-shelf rub, Dizzy Pig’s Raging River, and cooked the chicken until done. I then brushed on my fantastic homemade peach BBQ sauce. Wow, what great chicken! You can make chicken using this same technique but substitute your own rub or seasoning and any sauce you want. Just make sure that you don’t put the sauce on until the end (after the chicken is fully cooked) or it will burn. The Big Easy cooks at a high temperature. It won’t take long for it to set the sauce.
Oh how I do love Shake ‘N Bake pork chops. And as much as they are great made in the oven, I was completely blown away by how fantastic they were cooked in my Char-Broil Big Easy. Crazy tasty, the chops were unbelievably moist and tender. Every bite was so good, I hated coming to the end. Well, except that I saved the bone for last. You can’t have a Shake ‘N Bake chop and not gnaw on the bone. It’s almost a law. You could use boneless chops, but bone-in have much more flavor. I used 3/4″ bone-in chops, which took just over 20 minutes to cook to 160 F. I cooked the chops in Bunk Bed baskets lined with foil for easy clean up. Depending on the size of your chops, you might be able to cook two at a time per basket, but don’t crowd them or they won’t cook completely or consistently. If you use multiple bunk bed baskets so you can cook multiple chops at once keep in mind that each level might cook at a different rate. Try to use same-thickness chops on each level so they all finish at the same time.
You can use any flavor Shake ‘N Bake you like. Read the package instructions to decide how much you’ll need for the chops you have. I prefer my homemade chipotle Shake ‘N Bake. It takes just like the classic mix, but with a nice little smoky kick.
Shake 'N Bake Pork Chops on the Char-Broil Big Easy
Recipe type: Main
You can cook only one large pork chop (or maybe two small ones) at a time in the Big Easy basket. But, with a little finagling you can also add up to three Bunk Bed Baskets, giving you room for four large pork chops at once. Note that the chops at the top of the basket may cook at a different rate than those at the bottom, so start checking the temperatures after 20 minutes for chops that are around 3/4" thick. Thinner chops will of course take less time and thicker ones will take longer.
Working one at a time, place a pork chop into a resealable bag containing the Shake 'N Bake mix. Seal and shake until coated. Alternatively, pour the Shake 'N Bake out onto a plate and press the chop into the mixture, flipping and pressing the other side to also coat it.
Line the Big Easy basket and any bunk bed baskets with foil. I sprayed mine with non-stick spray but I don't think it's absolutely necessary.
Lower basket into the Big Easy.
Cook for 20 minutes then check the temperature in multiple places. The minimum safe temperature is 145 F, but I personally aim for 160 F as measured in several places.
Remove from the Big Easy and rest 5 minutes before serving.
There’s no denying that the Char-Broil Big Easy makes mighty fine chicken. Mighty tasty, mighty moist and mighty pretty. This Colombian-style chicken sets the bar really high when it comes to poultry on the Big Easy. Every bite is packed with a fantastic combination of spices and vegetables. I was reminded of the roasted chicken you could buy on the streets in South America. Whenever I make a perfect chicken like this Colombian-style chicken on my Big Easy I laughingly ask myself: should I hire security to guard the patio? It’s just so good that I wouldn’t be surprised if some passerby jumped the fence to grab a taste! The aroma alone while the chicken is cooking is enough to drive you crazy!
I (obviously) used a whole chicken for this recipe, but pieces would work just as fine. Just don’t overlap them in the Big Easy or they won’t cook evenly.
It had to be done. I was sitting there looking at my Char-Broil Big Easy pondering what I haven’t yet cooked on it and then it hit me. Bacon. I knew I’d have to go vertical with the bacon, so I grabbed a Big Easy kabob rack, some bacon, and proceeded to make bacon ‘curtains’, hanging the bacon down into the cooker. The bacon cooked up quickly and came out super crispy. And oh, did it ever smell soooo good! Since the bacon is hung over the kabob rack I didn’t end up with perfectly flat bacon, but I did get pieces that were perfect for BLT sandwiches. The point at which the bacon is bent cooks up the fastest, as did the bacon closest to the edges of the cooker. It’s easy to over-cook the bacon, so I recommend pulling it out of the Big Easy sooner than you think you should and letting it cool and crisp up. Also, it’s easier to remove the bacon from the rack if it is still slightly soft. Once it cools and gets crispy it will tend to break.