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I'm confused - smoking an 18 pounder

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by aucivil, Nov 25, 2010.

  1. aucivil

    aucivil Fire Starter SMF Premier Member

    I understand the danger zone concept and the 12# bird recommendation for regular smoke temps.  Also see where the rec. time for an 18 # bird in the oven is 4 hours @ 350.  So why not just run the smoker temp up to 325-350 range and give it a go.  Will it dry the bird out too much?

    I have an 18# fresh Butterball which I had planned on brining with cranberry (until I read the don't brine a butterball threads).  Wasn't planning to spatchcock the bird but was going to pop a couple of apples in the cavity.  Cooking in a 24" Smoke Vault so I can get the temps up.  Was planning on cooking at 325-350 for 2 hours then backing down to 275-300 to finish.  Estimating that cook time will be in the 5-6 hours.  Also thinking about mopping each hour.

    Does this sound ok?  Do the times sound right?  Any recommendations?
     
  2. pineywoods

    pineywoods SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member OTBS Admin SMF Premier Member

    I smoked two 15-16 lb Turkeys at around 325 the entire smoke and they came out pretty good. I had injected them last night. Once they reached 140 I could have turned the smoker down but didn't and got a nice crispy skin on them
     
  3. aucivil

    aucivil Fire Starter SMF Premier Member

    How long did they take?  Did you spatchcock?

    Thanks
     
  4. meateater

    meateater Legendary Pitmaster SMF Premier Member

    I did a 20# last year on my UDS, no problem. This year I'm doing a 20# on my UDS. This year I'm getting some wind and temps are colder, I'm glad I cured this one or it would have been in the oven a long time ago.
     
  5. pineywoods

    pineywoods SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member OTBS Admin SMF Premier Member

    I didn't spatchcock them and I honestly don't know the time I was doing to many things at once
     
  6. shamong9

    shamong9 Fire Starter

     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2010
  7. richc

    richc Fire Starter


    For what it's worth, I brined an 18lb butterball for 15 hours this year and put it in the oven. The consensus was that it was the best turkey anyone had had. I smoked a breast too and people liked it, but they said they'd never had a better bird out of the oven.