BBQ Turkey Brine...?

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Original poster
Oct 3, 2009
I bbqed a turkey a couple of weeks ago and it came out OK. The temp of my smoker got a little out of control so I kept having to move it around to the cooler parts of the smoker. The brine didn't work out to well, though. Should I loosen the skin so the brine gets under it more? I used a brine that I now have questions about.

I never do anything with the skin. I just throw the bird in the brine for 12-24 hours. What is your brine recipe? What do you question about it? If you post it that might give us some more information. There are several great proven brines you can find on this site if you want to give a different one a try.
What about the brine didn't work fer ya? 

Taste can be boosted along on turkey by usin an injection as well, turkey bein a rather large piece a meat.

Nothin needs ta be done with the skin, as long as yer bird was submerged totally in the brine.

Give us a bit more info an well be glad ta help ya find a solution.
Travcoman has a great brine called Tip's Slaughterhouse brine that is really, really good. I used it on a turkey for Thanksgiving and we all agreed it was the best turkey we had ever had. There is a wiki on it in the wiki's section - I believe it is under "S" or "T".
I used a brine I found in a book called The Art of Smokology. It was basically water and maple syrup, very little salt. The ratio of salt to water to sweet was weird. It wasn't in line with the basic brine recipes I've seen before. I don't know...I just wasn't impressed with the brine. Turkey came out good, but the flavor was off.

Life is a Love-Haight relationship
Slick play on words-Haight--  Anyway.  Turkey brines:  Check out Tips Slaughterhouse Brine.  I've it used on several turkeys, both whole and parts and have never been disappointed.  Turkey is not just a holiday meat for us.  The key is length of brine.  I clean the turkey real good, cold water wash down to get what ever the packers missed, then into the brine for at least 18 hours.  I also inject the major meat sections (another good one in Tips wiki).  You are right on one point, the brine is the key to a very successful turkey smoke.  Makes all the difference.
Brine, inject, & rub. I do all 3, sometimes just rub & inject, sometimes just rub, & sometimes naked. This is a learning process, trying everybody's suggestions until you perfect your own personal taste profile. I'm still tinkering & try all kinds of different ideas all the time. That's the fun of our hobby & obsession with smoking. The more you learn the more you realize you don't know. I think I learn something new every time I smoke something and think that will be the case for as long as I smoke. I love the challenge of trying to smoke the perfect BBQ and can only hope I never feel that I have achieved that goal. I want to always be excited to fire up the smoker & do a better BBQ than my last best effort.
I'd be very surprised that a brine consisting solely of water, maple syrup and a little bit of salt would be successful.  Not sure what amount of salt was in your brine but salt or sugar creates the osmotic difference that allows the moisture and seasonings to move into the bird 
Anything less then 1/2 cup a kosher salt in a 1 1/2 gallon brine ain't doin ya much good.  Now the 1/2 cup a sugar is there ta help give it the dash a sweet.  I wouldn't use any less a either. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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