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First Turkey Smoke Need Help

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

Really don't know what I'm doin with this 15 pound bird. Just put it in the big WSM at 315 right now after 20 minutes. Injected it and rubbed it outside and inside the skin. Usin hickory and apple (apple will keep it from gettin bitter?) I would like a fair hickory flavor but not over powered or bitter. Will the smoke have time to penetrate good before the skin crisps up? IT is at 80 right now. Any advice would be appreciated.

post #2 of 23

Keep ya eyes on the smoke coming out.  as long as it aint too thick ya will be alright.  make sure ya smoke stack is open wide and if ya need to cool it off do it with the input on the bottom.  Turkey and other birds need less smoke, they soak it up easily.  Just a wisp coming out ya chimney will do the tric k  Don't wory just have a drink sit back and enjoy the smoking process das half the fun

post #3 of 23
Thread Starter 

50 minutes and the skin is browned already. Am I runnin too hot? Somebody? Anybody?

post #4 of 23
Thread Starter 

Thanks Cappy

post #5 of 23
Check your temp. At grill level. Do you have a probe therm.
post #6 of 23
Thread Starter 

Maverick says 298. It was at 325 and climbing. Only one vent cracked at the bottom. Bird is brownin quick. Got me worried

post #7 of 23
Thread Starter 

Alright, I sat back and had 2 drinks and still worried this Turkey is gonna turn black on me. 1:15 in the smoker and Mahogany brown. Breast is readin 93. I got a call to go to work Tomorrow so I had to finish thawin in the sink and put it on late. It'll be dark in about an hour and a half. Lucky I bought a 10 led grill light. I just ain't gonna worry about it.:icon_eek:

post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 

I guess this things gonna be black by the time it's finished. Thinkin about droppin the heat and tentin it. Any suggestions?:help:

post #9 of 23

I think you will be okay, if you can get the temp down some that may help , but I doubt it will be black. you still have a few hours of cooking it it is only 93,

post #10 of 23
Thread Starter 

2 hours and it's dark brown. One vent cracked. Breast at 124. Temp at 320 and risin. Gotta go ad water to the pan

post #11 of 23
If you really don't want it dark (which is good in my book).. then cover the breast with foil.... I would suspect the hickory being the culprit that's making it dark.... high temps good... will make skin crisp....
post #12 of 23
Thread Starter 

Thanks Jck, I wanted to get a crisp skin that's why I'm goin hot but can't seem to get the temp stable. I think the wood chunks are givin me trouble flarin up. I'm used to low and slow. This is givin me fits, almost. I turned the Turkey breast side down cause a lot of juice was collecting inside and wanted it to soak in the breast. I don't think I'll be doin one this hot again

post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 

3 hours and the breast is readin 151. I expected about a five hour smoke, but not gonna get close.  What temp should I pull,160?

post #14 of 23
165 breast... 175 thigh
post #15 of 23


Evening. I figure 18 - 20 minutes per pound at 275 degrees for a whole turkey.  I like turkey and cook them often.  

As for getting the skin crispy: I kind of do it backwards from what you're doing.  I start off by cooking the bird at a lower temp. Then when he breast temp gets close to 165 I'll crank up the heat to crisp the skin. At any rate they come out well browned. 

Here is one that I recently did.  Don't know it's much help or not at this stage of your cook.  

Best of luck my friend. 



post #16 of 23
Thread Starter 

BDSkelly, that was a nice lookin Turkey. Mine looked like that after 30 minutes.:)  I'm at 162 (breast)at 3 1/2 hrs averaging 300. I think the next one I'll try 265 to 275 and crisp the skin at the end like you did. Thanks for your post.

post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 

Well the Turkey was 165 at 3 hours 37 min . Thats about 14 min a pound. Skin was black but the breast was tender, juicy and flavorful. I can't find my camera or I'd post a pic of my blackbird. :)

Wife liked it and she don't care for turkey usually. I didn't like the taste of the applewood. I'm glad I didn't use much. Thanks for the help/ reassurance, guys:)

post #18 of 23
glad it worked out for ya... as long as momma liked it all is well.... myself, I'm not a hickory fan... apple, pecan for me....
post #19 of 23

Great that it worked out and was good, they say you taste with your eyes first, but I have had food in my eyes and I didn't taste a thing, but the flavor on the tongue is a whole other story.

post #20 of 23
Thread Starter 

Thanks Jck.... and shtrdave, it means a lot to me havin support from a guy with a handle like yours :). Maybe next time I can do a nicer one. I've only used hickory and this apple. Pecan sounds good. I've been afraid to try any more fruitwood cause I didn't like the apple on the turkey or some ribs I did. I cut a white oak down and I have a peach tree down too. Might try them.

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