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Dry Brined and Smoked Whole Turkey Recipe

Traditional oven roasted whole turkey is the fail safe for most American homes when it comes to Thanksgiving, but a dry brined smoked whole turkey is a great change of pace. The reason that oven roasting is so popular is that it's mostly a safe as well as relatively easy way to cook a turkey.... Continue Reading →

Dry Brined and Smoked Whole Turkey Recipe
Home Is A Kitchen – Dry Brined and Smoked Whole Turkey Recipe – 1

Traditional oven roasted whole turkey is the fail safe for most American homes when it comes to Thanksgiving, but a dry brined smoked whole turkey is a gre

Type: main

Cuisine: American

Keywords: smoked turkey, thanksgiving

Recipe Yield: 18

Preparation Time: 10H

Cooking Time: 4H

Total Time: 14H

Recipe Ingredients:

  • 15-18 pound turkey (you can use almost any size turkey)
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons of baking powder (this helps to crisp up the skin)
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme (not ground)
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1.5 cups of soaked cherry wood chips

Recipe Instructions: If your turkey is in plastic, remove it from the packaging and make sure to remove the giblet bag (the sack filled with the organs and neck). You can save the neck if you want and smoke it as well or just use the giblets for other recipes. Place the turkey on a baking dish for easy transport and cleanup. Prepare the dry brine ingredients by mixing all of the spices in a large bowl. Spread 1/2 to 2/3 of the dry brine all over the turkey on the outside as well as inside the cavity. You don’t need to use all of the dry brine. Just make sure every surface is coated as well as the interior cavity. DO NOT put any brine under the skin between the skin and meat! Use latex gloves if you want or just wash your hands immediately after handling the dry brine and turkey so as not to dry out your hands or cross contaminate any surfaces. Tie off the legs of the turkey so that they aren’t splayed apart. This will help keep the shape of the turkey as it cooks. Place the dry-brined turkey in the fridge overnight or for about 8 to 12 hours uncovered until ready to smoke. When ready, heat the smoker to 250 degrees F and fill the water pan only about half way. The turkey will drip more fat and liquid into it, so you want to make sure it doesn’t overflow. As the smoker gets up to temp, soak the cherry wood chips in water. Once the smoker is up to temp, carefully place the turkey in the smoker and insert the meat thermometer deep into the thigh of the turkey for an accurate internal temp. Getting an accurate internal temperature is very important because if the interior of the turkey isn’t 175 degrees F in the thigh or 165 degrees F in the breast, it may not be safe to eat. Close the door of the smoker and add 1/2 cup of cherry wood chips to the smoker. Check the temperature of the turkey and add wood chips every hour. After 3.5 hours, check the temperature of the turkey every 20 minutes just to make sure it doesn’t get too hot. Depending on the size, the turkey should be ready in 4 to 5 hours. For 18 pounds, it took about 4.5 to 5 hours (approx. 15 min per pound). Once the internal temperature of the turkey reaches 175 or 180 degrees F in the thigh, open the smoker and behold its glory! Remove the smoked whole turkey turkey from the smoker and place back onto a baking sheet to cool down a bit and let the juices redistribute.man-fuel-food-blog-dry-brined-and-smoked-whole-turkey-finished When ready to serve, slice or carve the turkey as you normally would. Make note that the turkey leg is probably one of the best bites on this smoked whole turkey!

Editor's Rating:
5

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