First Turkey-Question

  • Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.
SMF is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.


Original poster
Sep 19, 2016
I smoked my first Turkey today. I used a MES30 at 275 degrees. The 12lb bird was in for right about 4 hours until the breast read 165 degrees via the built in thermometer. I double checked with a char broil thermometer which read 167 degrees. I also checked the thigh which read 167 degrees as well. I then pulled it and rested it under foil for about an hour. When I cut the breast it looked great, but when cutting the thighs red fluid ran out of the meat. Was this an error in temp or would it have probably been safe? I stuck the thighs in the oven to be safe. Thanks for the input!
It was fine but seeing red anything in poultry freaks folks out. 165 kills bacteria in seconds so if up to temp no isse. Below is a short explanation...

The USDA further explains that even fully cooked poultry can sometimes show a pinkish tinge in the meat and juices. This is particularly true of young chickens whose bones and skin are still very permeable. Pigment in the bone marrow can color the surrounding tissue and make the bones themselves look very dark. Hemoglobin in the muscles can likewise react with air during cooking to give the meat a pinkish color even after cooking. The chicken's feed and whether it's been frozen can also affect the final color.
Thank you Chef Jimmy for the reassurance. I have read that over and over, but it still worried me. I also made gravy from a recipe you posted on another thread, it was incredible. Thank you for the help!
Glad to help...JJ is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

Hot Threads