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Smoked Turkey Rub/Seasoning and Temp

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    Smoked Turkey Rub/Seasoning and Temp

    I'm getting bored of the Cajun smoked turkeys I've done in the past and am looking to try something new. So I am doing a couple of trial runs on a new recipe before a big biennial family Thanksgiving.

    I've got a defrosted and spatcocked turkey dry brining right now and need to figure out what I am going to season it with before throwing it on my LSG pellet pooper Sunday.

    What seasoning or rubs have turned out well for you? I'm debating between a herb butter or more of a BBQ style rub but I am welcome to anything outside the box and non-traditional.

    What temp did you cook at? I've done 325F- 375F in the past and put the bird directly on the grates.

    Thanks for letting me pick your brains and learn from your experience!

    I do 4 or 5 turkeys a year. I also usually prefer the cajun rubs, but when I don't do that I go very simple. I make garlic butter, put it and pepper between the skin and the meat, and that's it (after the dry brine). Really lets the smoke and natural turkey flavor shine.

    Edit: forgot to mention temp. I usually do turkeys on my cabinet smoker and go between 350 and 375. Always spatchcock and always go right on the grate.
    Last edited by Joey877; October 1, 2021, 12:42 PM.


    • Steak Snake
      Steak Snake commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks. Simple sounds a lot better. The last one I did had a Garlic Butter, Worcestershire, and Crab Boil injection which was way too much.

    • bbqLuv
      bbqLuv commented
      Editing a comment
      Me like simple.

    For me, there is nothing better than Meathead's Simon and Garfunkel Rub.

    I usually cook at 400 F or so. I like to go hot and fast. I usually cook it in a large cast iron pan, spatchcocked with a good ol' pool of butter.


      Spatchcocked heritage turkey dry brined night before cook
      Injected with stick melted butter, 1/4 cup vegetable broth and 1 teaspoon garlic.
      • 1/2T Herbs de Provence
      • 1/4T Pepper
      • 1T Smoked paprika
      • 1T Sugar
      • 1t Garlic
      • 1/2t Mustard seed
      • 1/2t Coleman's
      Then hung in vertical propane smoker with apple at 325º (~3.5 hours)

      Click image for larger version

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        Yes Yes, and Yes, Spatchcock the fowl thing. Sounds good to me. Looks good to me.
        When you spatchcock a turkey do you ever remove the breast bone?
        I have not done yet when spatchcocking chicken for turkey, I am just wondering if it is worth it.


          Dry brine the night before with kosher salt UNDER the skin and in the cavity of the bird.
          Simon & Garfunkel rub
          Cook the gravy under the bird
          Run the smoker/cooker at 375'ish (which means on my WSM no water pan, two chimneys of charcoal, vents wide open)
          cook until breasts are 160F

          Spatchcocked and going in the fridge with salt under the skin and in the cavity
          Click image for larger version  Name:	turkey - 1.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	227.8 KB ID:	1103599

          The morning of Turkey Day, you can see the impact of the refrigerator and salt, drying out the skin
          Click image for larger version  Name:	turkey - 3.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	202.3 KB ID:	1103602

          Used Simon & Garfunkel rub, just going on the smoker
          Click image for larger version

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          Put the gravy together
          Click image for larger version  Name:	turkey - 2.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	198.2 KB ID:	1103603

          Turkey on the WSM
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          Turkey all done, yum
          Click image for larger version  Name:	turkey - 6.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	135.7 KB ID:	1103600


            I use Malcom Reeds recipe for the most part, wet brine 8 hours max in my own concoction, last turkey I used Blues Hog rub.
            My turkeys are cooked whole and I do like using aerosol canola spray during the cook.
            375 is my optimum cooking temp.


              Another Simon and Garfunkel vote from me, or use meathead’s new poultry seasoning, which is based off Simon and Garfunkel rub.


                Spatchcock for sure...I added some butter/cajun seasoning mix under the skin with Kosmos Dirty Bird on the outside. Sprayed with a butter flavored spray on the outside, once at about 100 internal and again at 150 internal. Started my pellet grill at 200 and kicked up to 350 after 1 hour. Took about 3 hours to get to 160 in the breast and 170 in the thigh. The skin did have a nice crisp to it too. Click image for larger version  Name:	Smoked Turkey.jpg Views:	0 Size:	4.88 MB ID:	1103854 It was fantastic....wife said we should do that for Thanksgiving. That my friends is the ultimate praise. She doesn't come off her "tradition" stuff very easily.
                Last edited by Redwng; October 2, 2021, 10:16 AM.


                  I do a lot of turkeys, like one every month or two. And while I like them done at high temps for the skin, I also do them slower like at 250-275. The skin does not get crisp, but it is bite through and I think the meat stays juicier especially the breast meat. Dry brine. Garlic butter under and on the skin, black pepper.


                    I’ve only done turkey once in the WSM a few years ago on Thanksgiving. Turned out great. I did a homemade rub and injected something in the bird. Course I don’t know what and never bothered to write anything down so I’m very interested in this thread because I’d like to smoke a turkey 🦃 again.


                    • jitsntricks
                      jitsntricks commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Do it! Ever since I started smoking turkeys a couple/few years ago it's the only way we want them now.

                    What do y'all think about spatchcocking a turkey and cooking it on the grate of a PBC hot and fast? I find if I do that with chickens and just get the PBC really hot and put the bird skin side down for about 30-40 min then flip the skin comes out pretty good. Of course I leave the bars out to keep the temps up. I haven't yet tried with a turkey as I've just used the hanger so far.

                    I'm thinking of wet brining a bird and then doing this OR just try brine and inject with good ol' Tony Chachere's creole butter or my own.




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