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Traeger Smoked Potato Salad

We recently made a move from Austin, Texas back home to Little Rock, Arkansas. There are pros and cons to every move, but one major perk of being back home is access to the potato salad at Whole Hog Cafe. After eating our way through the best BBQ in Texas, it’s still probably the best potato salad we’ve had.

holding a bowl of smoked potato salad next to a Traeger grill

While Whole Hog’s potato salad isn’t smoked, this smoked potato salad is my spin on their extra creamy, bacon-heavy potato salad. My recipe starts with Traeger smoked garlic and red potatoes that go into a sour cream and mayo based sauce with chopped bacon and fresh herbs. I like to think I’ve made my hometown proud with this one!

smoked red potatoes on a wire rack inside a Traeger grill

What to Serve with Traeger Potato Salad

These smoked potatoes are perfect for throwing on the grill at the end of cooks like our brisket style tri tip or chuck roast recipes.

I typically try to include recipes that cook at the same temperature so you can throw things on the grill together. In this case, my smoked chicken breast, roasted sweet potatoes, smoked cauliflower florets, smoked chicken meatballs all cook in a similar temperature range. You may need to slightly tweak cook times for anything cooking 25º higher or lower.

This style of potato salad goes perfectly with classic BBQ dishes like burgers, pulled pork, whole smoked chicken or chicken wings, and basically everything at your summer cookouts. Be sure to pair with other sides like smoked baked beans, slaw, mac and cheese, and rolls.

Traeger smoked burgers, baked beans, chuck roast, and chocolate chip cookies

And don’t forget about dessert. Did you know you can make smoked cookies and apple crisp on a Traeger?

There’s a recipe card below for you to save to your device or print, laminate, and put in the favorites section of your recipe binder. Maybe I’m getting ahead of myself, but I would love to hear your thoughts on this smoked potato salad.

Does it live up to Whole Hog Cafe’s? Even better? Let me know in a recipe review or comment below. You can leave any questions you have about the recipe in the comments as well.

wooden spoon in a bowl of potato salad in front of Traeger pellet smoker

Smoked Potato Salad

Yield: 9 Servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Pellet smoked potatoes and garlic with a southern style creamy sauce with bacon.


  • 2 pounds Red or Yukon Gold Potatoes, cut into bite size pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt and Black Pepper
  • 1 bulb of Garlic + 1 teaspoon Olive Oil

For the Sauce

  • 8 slices Bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 1/2 cup Mayo
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • Greens of 2 Scallions, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Minced Chives
  • 1 Tablespoon Ranch Seasoning


  1. Place a cast iron grill pan or wire rack on your smoker and preheat to 250ºF with the lid closed.
  2. Wash and dry the potatoes before cutting into small pieces and tossing with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Slice the top of the bulb of garlic and drizzle with a bit of olive oil and pinch of salt and pepper. Tightly wrap in foil.
  3. Place the potatoes on the grill pan or wire rack and the garlic anywhere on the grill. Cook the garlic for 60-90 minutes until the bulb is soft to the touch and the cloves are golden. Cook the potatoes for 2-3 hours until fork tender.
  4. While the potatoes and garlic are on the smoker, mix the remaining ingredients together in a large bowl and refrigerate. Once the smoked garlic is ready, squeeze the bulb to remove the cloves and smash with a fork before adding to the bowl.
  5. Once the potatoes are fork tender, remove from the smoker and rest for 5-10 minutes to slightly cool before adding to the remaining ingredients. Salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Serve the potato salad warm or refrigerate to serve chilled.


I used a Traeger Pro 575 with the PRO blend pellets for recipe testing.

For a lighter potato salad, you can use light sour cream or nonfat Greek yogurt, light mayo, and center cut bacon like in our smoked chicken salad.

If you have the time, you can make extra smoky garlic by starting the garlic unwrapped at 165ºF for an hour or two before wrapping to finish roasting.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 9 Serving Size: 1/2 cup (about 5 oz)
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 321Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 30mgSodium: 489mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 3gSugar: 3gProtein: 8g

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