This past weekend, we tried something new or my husband did! He got up bright and early to smoke a few turkeys that we plan to use for Thanksgiving. We had to do it a bit earlier than normal due to work schedules and the time it takes to smoke meat; however, it was well worth it!
We decided to brine the turkeys first as brining them makes them much more juicy. I did some research on brining and ended up adapting this recipe for Out of this World Turkey Brine. This recipe suggest brining for 3 days and from what I can tell the longer you brine a turkey the more juicy it becomes. For us, we ended up only brining for one day because we were short for time; however, it made a world of difference compared to the turkeys we have done in the past!
It was absolutely perfect, smoked to perfection!
As far as the time to smoke it will depend based on the type of smoker you use. The recipes we found suggested that it took close to 12 hours; however, ours only took 5 hours to smoke 2 turkeys. My husband did move the fire closer to the turkeys to help them cook faster, but the key is the internal temperature. It needs to be at least 165* in the most inner part of the turkey to be done.
Brined and Smoked Turkey
- Brine: This was used on an average 15-16 lb turkey.
- 1/2 Cup Sliced Sweet Onion
- 1 Tbsp Rosemary
- 1/2 Cup Table Salt
- 2 Cloves Fresh Garlic
- 1 Tbsp Black Pepper
- 1/4 Cup Worcestershire Sauce
- 1/3 Cup Brown Sugar
- 2 Gallons Water
- Additional Rub: This will be needed the day you cook the turkey.
- 1/2 Stick of Butter Melted
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- Poultry Seasoning
- 1/2 Stick of Butter to be placed inside the turkey
- To brine the turkey, we used a 5 gallon bucket. You will need a container large enough to hold the turkey. Next, we placed the turkey in the bucket and added in all the brining ingredients. We used enough water to be sure the turkey was submerged.
- Cover the bucket and let this sit in the refrigerator for 1-3 days.
- Once you are ready to smoke the turkey, begin by rinising it.
- Then, combine the butter and olive oil. Coat the outside of the turkey with the olive oil and butter mixture just a nice coat of it.
- Season the turkey with the poultry season. The amount of seasoning will vary based on the size of the turkey.
- Next place 1/2 of stick of butter inside the turkey.
- Begin smoking this at an average heat of 225*.
- Continue coating the turkey with the butter and olive oil every hour until it is done to help keep the turkey moist.
- The turkey will be done when the internal temperature reaches at least 165* in the deepest part of the turkey.
Let us know, do you brine your turkey? Smoke it? Fry it? Bake it? Roast it? What are some of your tips and tricks?
Need more recipe ideas? Check out the Recipe Index by Mommy Hates Cooking.