Smoke a whole turkey?

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Meat Mopper
Original poster
OTBS Member
Apr 19, 2006
Moberly, MO
The spouse and I were talking the other day, and it turns out neither of our parents are having a Thanksgiving dinner this year. That leaves us to our own devices, and we thought about smoking a whole turkey.

About how long should I expect a whole turkey to take in the smoker? I know its a big and heavy, but its hollow too. Anyone have any links or recipes for smoking this big 'ol bird? Can you use stuffing or would that turn out bad?

Thanks for any help!
Plan on an overnight smoke. It is about like smoking any other large mass meat such as butts, hams or briskets. Never, I repeat, Never stuff your turkey before smoking. If you want it stuffed then stuff it after you take it out of the smoker. I smoke a turkey every Thanksgiving and Christmas. Usally do one smoked and one fried for each holiday. The leftovers from the smoked ones are the best stuff ever. 8)
A 10-12 lb'er should take about six hours. Last year I filled my water pan with coke and apple juice (smells sooooo awesome), put apple juice and coke soaked hickory chunks in the charcoal pan, and smoked for about six hours. I wanted to go longer, but the thermometer doesnt lie. I pulled it when it hit 180 and the bird was absolutely the best turkey I have ever eaten. Moist, fall off the bone tender, and this wicked glaze on the outside from all the coke/apple juice sugar. Good god people....I cant wait till thursday!!!!
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