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I got a gobbler on the smoker and need a quicky answered

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quick dumb question that I should of been researching for the past week. Where do you recommend sticking the temp probe in a turkey?

Mine is on the smoker and has already hit 110 after less than 2 hours. I am concerned that I have put the probe in a bad spot. Right now, it is in the breast, but I might have it too deep. Possibly too close to the cavity.

So, where do you put your probe?

My smoker is maintaining 265 despite flat cold wind whipping through here. The temp outside claims to be 45, but with wind chill we are easily into the low 30s if not high 20s. I moved the smoker into the garage cause it was struggling to hit 170 outside.

Thanks everyone! I will add qview pics when she comes out!
post #2 of 16
I will take the temp near the breast bone, backed off a little. And near the thick area at the thigh. Good luck with the turkey. Sounds like the winds are on their way here. Wind is still out of the south here.
post #3 of 16
probe to the thickest part of the thigh & pit temp 325-50(if it's less than 15lb bird i got pit temp 275-300) but thats just me.
post #4 of 16
Did a 12 1/2 lb'er yesterday. Kept it around 300*....About 5 hrs to reach 170* in the breast.
post #5 of 16
Probes like the breasts! PDT_Armataz_01_11.gif
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
I went with the breast. My ECB was getting it's butt kicked by wind and cold air. The turkey went in at 9 last night and wasn't done until 6:30 this morning. Which really surprised me since it was at 110 after just 2 hours. But it appeared to have plateau-d on me. It was stuck in the 150's most of the night. I ended up moving the smoker into the garage to help the wind factor.

I put Coke in the water pan and could really taste a sweetness in the meat that was closest to the pan. The breast was very tender and moist. Oh yeah, I put the mayo on the bird before I rubbed it down. I will upload pics tonight.
post #7 of 16
What he said.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Here is the turkey at about 8:30 with a mayo slather and Jeff's Famous Rub all over the inside and outside.

My two soux chefs helped me make up a new batch of rub and helped put the mayo on.

The bird went in at 9 pm and was doing pretty well by midnight. I was hitting 110 and figured that by 3 I would be pushing 160. But it stalled out and didn't hit 165 until 6:30. Weather was a huge factor for me. I had to move the cheapo Brinkmann into the garage. The wind and cold air was just nasty. The smoker would drop a full 7 degrees each time a gust of wind came through. Which was near constant as the winds were just whipping.

By 6 am the smoker was struggling to maintain 230 degrees. I could have added more wood chunks to warm it up, but I didn't want to ruin the skin. As it turned out, the skin wasn't very good after that long at such a low temperature.

So, let my example help solidify your smoke experience. High temps on the smoker. If you can't maintain 275 to 300, then consider another route. Maybe your grill can smoke it up and maintain a higher temp than your smoker. Or perhaps you should have some extra charcoal on backup ready to go. Even it you are running electric or propane. A pan full of hot coals would certainly help the temp.

Oh, and sorry I don't have any pics of the finished bird. I didn't have time.
post #9 of 16
Sorry you had such a hard time with the turkey hon. Wind can be tough! I use a three sided wind break and a removable top when it's cold and windy it helps tremendously!

Happy Thanksgiving!
post #10 of 16
The crumb-snatchers look happy! In winds like that, I just smoke for a few hours, then throw it in the oven. It's still great!
post #11 of 16
AJ, don't stop smoking a turkey just cause you can't reach 275 to 300ยบ. I have smoked countless birds in the 225 to 250 range and was very happy with them. Maybe the skin wasn't crisp, but the meat was PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif

If you want crisp skin go for it, but you do not need to smoke at that high a range to get a great tasting bird.
post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 
The entire family raved about the turkey tonight. I thought it was a bit salty, but the smokey flavor easily made up for it!

As always, the extended family here at SMF made all the difference!
post #13 of 16
I am so glad your bird turned out great! Did you mayo the bird? I intened to try that today I had lost of arms and legs but got side tracked by what I thought was gonna be a last minute dinner trip and forgot! CRS stinks!
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Yeah, I put mayo on the outside and then put about 3/4 of a cup of Jeff's rub all over it. Unfortunately the skin didn't pan out for me. The smoker just couldn't get a high temperature unless I threw 8 chunks of hickory in it. Of course then I had smoke billowing out of it like a locomotive!

It was amusing to look back, but I grabbed my tongs and started grabbing the wood chunks to get them out of the smoker. The wind was howling so badly that three of them caught fire and started throwing embers across my yard. A yard that is covered with dead leaves! I had to throw water on them to put out the flames!

Ah the holidays!
post #15 of 16
Wow aj, that sounds pretty scary! Now you know to get the kids raking when you're going to do a smoke!
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
Amen jaynik!
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