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stuffing turkey

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by duggy, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. So thanksgiving is coming up and I plan on smoking my first turkey. A few questions though. I always thought that making turkey would take the whole day but I've been reading on this site that it takes approximately 6 hours?(for a 12-15 pound turkey). Is that right? Also, what difference does it make if I stuff the turkey with some stuffing or not? Does that make the turkey taste better or the stuffing or both? 
  2. solaryellow

    solaryellow Limited Mod Group Lead

    Don't stuff the cavity with anything or you may not get the bird cooked all the way through.
  3. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Legendary Pitmaster Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    And the bacteria is absorbed into the stuffing and may not be killed off in a safe enough time. If you want to stuffing look when you present it I would cook the bird and stuffing separate then stuff when the bird is done. If you want it to have a crisp look take a little hand torch and hit the outside of the stuffing before taking to the table. If your just going to cut it up before it gets to the kitchen then just do them separate.
  4. ooo thank you. But how come the turkey is so often stuffed when it's oven roasted? Is it because in the oven, the turkey is heated at a higher temp? 
  5. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    we do not stuff the bird b4 oven roasting either . For exactly the same reason . cook stuffing sepratly and stuff b4 presentation.
  6. fftwarren

    fftwarren Smoking Fanatic

    I've heard that that is just for looks. I heard that even in the oven its not that safe. also the stuffing is going to soak up all the blood and oils so it seems like it would make the stuffing kind of nasty anyway
  7. meateater

    meateater Legendary Pitmaster SMF Premier Member

    Oven turks are cooked at 350* normally. When you smoke a bird the temps are 250* and below. Stuffing them will increase the chance of bacteria when smoking. You want to take the bird from 40*-140* in 4 hours or less. That's the FDA standard. I did a 20#  bird last year and barely cleared the standard on my UDS, no stuffing and have run that drum for over a year so I know how it operates. I would suggest a bird around 15# to be on the safe side.
  8. thanks for all the quick responses! This will be my first year making turkey. Well my family is ordering a precooked one and then just oven roasting it. But a few days after I'm going to smoke one with my friends so that I can compare them. I am hoping to notice a big difference 
  9. pit 4 brains

    pit 4 brains Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    It's because that's the way grandma used to do it and it was handed down through the generations.. Ever since I have been baking the holiday bird, I have gone with rough chopped veggies in the cavity and i have used the upside-down method with a lot of butter under the skin. Flip the bird for the last hour or so to brown the skin. Never had a bad bird. You can always use pan drippings to flavor your "dressing". If you smoke one, you can catch the drippings and use them also for a smokey gravy and smoky dressing. I have smoked a handfull of hens for the house but this will be my first time smoking one for the big familly feast so I'm looking forward to some exploration myself..

  10. Just put your dressing in one of those throw-away aluminum loaf pans and cook it next to your bird in the smoker.  All the flavor, without any of the salmonella. I do smash up a few cloves of garlic and a quartered lemon and throw them in the cavity, but that's about it. You want that heat to be able to get in there.
  11. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    Fix the stuffing in another pan in the oven or even the smoker if you want to but not together.