MES or Weber for Turkey?

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by plume-o-smoke, Dec 22, 2015.

  1. plume-o-smoke

    plume-o-smoke Fire Starter

    ​I'm smoking a turkey for Christmas, I can do it in my MES 30 or my Weber. The MES is by far a more controlled environment (read: easy to use) but I'm worried it won't get hot enough, topping out at ~270 on a good day. My chicken skins have always been awfully rubbery w/ the MES. The Weber, of course, goes as hot as you want, but is small and less controllable.



    ​Anyone want to steer me one way or the other?
     
  2. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Christmas is busy enough. Go with which ever is easier for you. For a One Step Smoke with Crispy Skin the birds have to be smoked at a temp of 300-325°F. You can figure about 15 minutes per pound to reach the desired IT. Electric smokers usually only go to 275°F. With these you will be smoking at the most common temp range of 225-275°F. You can figure on about 25 minutes per pound cook time + or - 5 minutes depending what part of the range you choose. Usually the skin will not crisp so if the skin is not Crisp enough when the IT is 145*F in the Breast, put the Bird in a 425*F Oven to finish cooking to 165* and Crisp the Skin...JJ
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2015
  3. plume-o-smoke

    plume-o-smoke Fire Starter

    Thanks Jimmy, good advice re: keeping it simple. And the cook times. I always pay particularly close attention to your posts.
     
  4. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    You're welcome and thank you. The times will get you close but watch closely toward the end and go by final IT...JJ
     
  5. plume-o-smoke

    plume-o-smoke Fire Starter

    No doubt, cooking times are just a meal-planning guideline. I *always* use my Maverick 732 for temps. BBQ is done when the temp is right. Period. 
     
  6. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I would suggest whichever smoker you use, spatchcocking the bird. It will cook evenly and if you go the route of using the MES it will help you avoid the rubbery skin (if it was me I'd use the Weber and higher temps).

    Drying the skin is a must. I prefer to air dry poultry in the fridge. Minimum of 8 hours, but overnight is the best. In a pinch you can use a hair dryer on low right before putting the bird in the smoker. I avoid oils and butter on or under the skin if cooking the bird at lower temps.

    A dry salt rub can also help crisp the skin up.
     

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