Smoked Turkey – How To & Recipe

Having a meal of smoked turkey is almost everyone’s dream, isn’t it? If you ever wanted to have a perfect smoked turkey, you are at right place and time. We are going to show you how to smoke a turkey with ease.

Smoked food always taste good, is it my observation only? I don’t think so. Will it ruin the food if you smoke rather slowly? There are many other question as well which we are going to answer.

There is always something mystic about smoked turkeys. As we all know they are extremely popular near to the Thanksgiving time. There is a store nearby where people flock 2 months before Thanksgiving to have smoked turkeys as their feast.

How to Smoke a Turkey?

smoked turkey

Smoking turkey takes a long time for basting itself, it cooks at low temperatures continuously. We want it to be less dry and boring. The incredible flavor of smoked turkey is delivered by smoke so you don’t have to season it beyond salt, pepper, onion and garlic.

What I do is to stuff the bird cavity with some aromatics. In this way, you can enjoy more moisture. Now your turkey is able to absorb most of the smoke making it ever so delicious. It is important to leave the turkey overnight in a big pan. This way, the turkey’s skin will get dry by the refrigerator air circulating around it. A dry turkey is recommended for smoking because it behaves better.

Which are the best spices for Smoked Turkey Recipe?

I think it is more than enough to add salt, pepper, onion and garlic. You can even go for paprika. Beyond that, I don’t think it will be good.

Smoked Whole Turkey vs. Smoked Turkey Breast

smoked turkey breast

A smoked turkey can be enjoyed both ways by attaching or detaching the drumsticks. Both ways have their own aromas. But if you want things to be a little quicker, a drum stick detaching is better for it as it will be done when the breast is finished. I also prefer my turkey this way.

If you to go with attaching drumstick, you still have to stuff the cavity with required things. It is entirely up to you which method you choose.

Must Read: Best Electric Smoker for Smoked Turkey

What is the best equipment for Smoked Turkey?

A proper electric smoker will definitely make life easier for you. It can also be done in grill smokers with a low indirect heat. You can adjust the thermostat at 250°F max, but even 230°F will work for many of the cases. I would recommend the apple or alder wood smoke as they have worked well in my experiences.

If you need another choice then hickory is a good option. But I would still recommend the first two. I always use a best electric smoker as it makes life a lot easier. It takes care of things for you rather vice versa.

How long to smoke a turkey?

smoked turkey recipe

Well, the answer to this question depends on the size of your bird. Make sure to completely thaw it first. Usually I would smoke a pound of turkey for about 30 to 40 minutes. It is recommended to use a best meat thermometer especially if you have a thermopro tp-18, it will work best. It will easily identify when the optimum temperature is reached.

You can also use an instant read thermometer but I will not recommend it. You can even judge the smoked turkey by its leftovers. There is absolutely no match for smoked turkey sandwiches. You can even enjoy the leftover smoked turkey pizza. You’ll feel the taste like out of this world.

Now, let’s move on to best smoked turkey recipe….

Best Smoked Turkey Recipe

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Smoked Turkey

The ultimate smoked turkey recipe to enjoy a great meal of smoked turkey.

  • 1 Whole Turkey (Fresh, Neck Removed, 12-14 pounds.)
  • 1/4 cup Peanut Oil
  • 1 tsp Granulated Onion
  • 3 tbsp Kosher Salt
  • 2 tsp Granulated Garlic
  • 3 Apples (No stems)
  • 2 Yellow Onions (papery skin removed)
  • 3 cloves Garlic (papery skin removed)
  1. Pat turkey with breast side up. Set it on a roasting rack. Place it in refrigerators for minimum 4 hours. It is recommended to place it overnight to dry it out.

  2. Heat the smoker for up to 250°F on the day of smoking. It is recommended to use Applewood for producing smoke .

  3. Stuff the ingredients like onion and garlic in turkey cavity. Now drizzle the peanut oil over dried turkey. Now, rub the turkey with salt, granulated garlic and turkey.

  4. Put the turkey into best electric smoker smoke for 35 minutes for 1 pound of turkey. Smoke it until meat thermometer gives you a reading of 165°F on the meat breast.

  5. Shift the smoker turkey carefully to a rimmed half sheet pan using silicon oven mitts.

  6. Tent the smoked turkey with foil for 30 minutes to make juices redistribute before slicing.

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