Smokeing a turkey ?

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by beerbelly, Nov 9, 2009.

  1. beerbelly

    beerbelly Smoke Blower SMF Premier Member

    Do I have this right? I have a 30 " MES, which I think only goes to 275 *. So this is to low of temp to smoke a turkey? Thanks
  2. Nope - 275 should be perfect - just ice the breast about an hour prior to putting the bird in the smoker (large zip-lock bag filled with ice cubes and placed on the breast) - this will ensure that the breast does not get over done.

    Also remember - poultry takes smoke better than other meats so use a milder wood and not a lot of it.
  3. fire it up

    fire it up Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    275 will be perfectly fine, you just won't be able to get the skin crispy that way.
    I always pull the skin off my poultry after smoking so I don't mind the skin not getting crisp.
    If you do want to eat the skin you can smoke it nearly to completion then finish it in the oven to give it that nice crisp brown skin color.
  4. I always inject my turkeys to keep them nice and moist. Have used a variety of marinades to do this.
  5. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have smoked many of turkeys and 275 should be just fine like Jim said you just might not get the skin as crispy as you want to but the bird will be one of the tasteyest turkeys you have ever eaten. I personally haven't injected a turkey that I smoked I alway inject the turkeys I fry.
  6. bigwheel

    bigwheel Smoking Fanatic

    Well in an ideal world 275 would not be whut the doctor ordered but we all have to make do from time to time. Best one I ever done was last year on the Brinkmann Elec Gourmet. Best as I can tell it cooks at about 295 with all thangs being equal. I rubbed it all over and under the skin with cheap eyetalian dressing and rubbed it in the same spots with a combo of Paul Purdhommes Poultry Magic and Lawrys Lemon Peppa at the rate of 50/50. Bagged it up in a trash bag over night along with any remaining dressing. It was a whopper which I think was 22 pounds or higher. Took 9 hrs to get it to 175 in the thigh. Used hickory..and mesquite chunks with a few small pee can limbs thrown in. Always cook it breastes down. I had to teach Emeril that trick.

  7. cowgirl

    cowgirl Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Don't forget to take pics for us! [​IMG]
  8. I've got a Brinkman electric also, but I've never done a turkey. I imagine mine will be around 14 lbs. It will be brined prior to smoking, and will be smoked with red oak and pecan or hickory. Approximatelt how long should the bird be smoked for? I will need to have it ready to carve by 4:00 pm, but I don't want to spend all night with it. I will probably have it in a cooler wrapped in tin foil and a towel for a couple of hours prior to carving.
    Thanks in advance for the insight.
  9. Sorry, my signature got lost at some point. I've been here before.
  10. marty catka

    marty catka Meat Mopper

    You might want to check the ambient temp inside the MES. Dangle a remote therm probe or an instant read in the vent to double check the actual temp. Mine is off by as much as 50 degrees from what the thermostat says. It got closer as the unit cycled a few times, but it was still 30+ degrees high. 275 on the digital = 325 on the remote therm. I use the OS AW131 and in a pot of boiling water it reads 211.
  11. I'd recommend going light on the smoke. I also have injected my turkeys in the past and it keeps them nice and moist, though many on here do not inject the bird.

    I've used maple int he past for birds and that seems to work very well.
    Good luck with it and send us some pics when done.
  12. I remember reading on the SMF once that whoever the poster was had heard that rubbing turkey or chicken skin with cornstarch prior to smoking would yield a crispy skin. Has anyone ever tried this?


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