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18 pound turkey too big? - Page 2

post #21 of 24

Wow, what a lot of info on smoking turkeys!!!! I'm new at this, thanks to my buddy Dave, and was wanting to try the TGD turkey on my smoker. Still figuring out some of the terms used but got the idea that splitting the bird may work just fine. Just want to make sure to keep it moist for when it comes out and heads to the table. Would like to find a brine recipe to use also!!!!

post #22 of 24
Originally Posted by BobbyGee View Post

 I already bought the turkey (onsale .37 pound) with the idea of seperating the legs and thighs and placing them on a differnt rack.But thought... Instead of using a smoking temp of 225 crank up the heat to 275. Any thought?AA  ARe   I understand the logic that you dont want the bird in the danger zone for too long,hence every where I look, I see recomendations of using a 12 pound and below turkey.Obviously the bird will get less smoking time,but I think Jeffs newsletter last year mentioned as long as it gets 4 hours of smoke all should be well.Any thoughts?

You may make it at 275 but I think it will be too close for comfort, If you have your heart set on smoking the bird, get your smoker up to about 325 place the bird and bring down to about 275 over the course of an hour.

Then when you feel comfortable that you will pass the danger zone safely, reduce your temps to 230-240



  • Time charts, not an exact but in the ballpark,


My last bird was a 12.4 lb bird and took almost 34 minutes per/lb at 230 - 240°F, I was at exactly 4 hours into the cook when I reached 140°F, next cook I will maintain 250- 260°F until it is out of the "danger zone", this was too close for comfort.
  • Cooking


  • If you start out at 275, you are looking at a minimum of 7.5 hours, I think this will be too long of a cook time.


  • Cooking
    • At 235°F your turkey will take 30 to 35 minutes per pound.
    • At 250°F your turkey will take 25 to 30 minutes per pound.
    • At 275°F your turkey will take 20 to 25 minutes per pound.
post #23 of 24

I've got a 18 lb turkey in the smoke box right now. My plan was to smoke it 2 hours at 225, then transfer it to the oven for 3 hours @ 350. Max temp on my smoker is 275.

I'm at 1.5 hr and the temperature is at 117 (thigh) and 115 (breast). From what I read, the turkey needs to be out of the "danger zone" (140) before 4 hours.


I'm using a MES 30. I soaked the turkey in brine for 24 hours, then allowed to dry for 6 hours. Olive oil applied to the skin.


Is there a slow down zone for the temperature? If I leave it in the smoker, is it going to take forever to reach 140, or will it exit the danger zone in time? How long will it take to climb 20 degrees at 225?

post #24 of 24

I pulled out the turkey after 2 hours of smoke just to be safe. Into the oven @ 350 degrees. I hit 140 at about 3 hours. Timing was perfect. Total cook time, 4.75 hours. I let her rest for 25 minutes, then carved it up and threw it in a crock pot. Midnight shift ate good tonight! Everybody loved the turkey. Juicy and deliscious!

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