Master the Art of Smoking a Whole Turkey on Your Weber Grill

Elevate your Thanksgiving feast with a juicy, flavorful smoked turkey, cooked to perfection on your Weber grill This comprehensive guide, drawing insights from Weber’s expert resources, provides everything you need to know, from prep to plate

Preparation is Key:

  1. Thawing: Begin by thawing your turkey thoroughly in the refrigerator. Allow approximately 24 hours for every 4-5 pounds of turkey.
  2. Brining (Optional): Consider brining your turkey for extra juiciness. Submerge it in a salt-water solution for 12-24 hours, depending on your preference.
  3. Pat it Dry: Before seasoning, ensure your turkey is completely dry by patting it with paper towels. This allows for crispy skin.
  4. Seasoning: Rub your turkey generously with your favorite seasonings. A simple combination of salt, pepper, and herbs like rosemary and thyme works wonders.
  5. Spatchcocking (Optional): For faster cooking and even browning, consider spatchcocking your turkey. This involves removing the backbone and flattening the bird.

Setting Up Your Weber Grill:

  1. Fuel: Choose charcoal or wood pellets for your smoking adventure. Charcoal offers a classic smoky flavor, while wood pellets provide consistent heat and ease of use.
  2. Temperature: Aim for a consistent temperature of 300-350°F (150-175°C) inside your grill. Use a Weber Connect Smart Grilling Hub for precise temperature monitoring.
  3. Water Pan (Optional): For added moisture and to prevent the turkey from drying out, consider placing a water pan filled with broth or water beneath the grate.
  4. Wood Chunks: Enhance the smoky flavor by adding wood chunks like apple, cherry, or hickory to the charcoal or directly on the grill grates.

Smoking the Turkey:

  1. Placement: Position your turkey breast-side down on the grill grate. This allows the juices to drip down and keep the breast moist.
  2. Cooking Time: Plan on approximately 15-18 minutes of cook time per pound. Use a reliable meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature of the thickest part of the thigh reaches 165°F (75°C).
  3. Basting (Optional): Baste the turkey with melted butter or a flavorful glaze every hour for added moisture and a beautiful golden-brown color.
  4. Resting: Once the turkey reaches the desired internal temperature, remove it from the grill and let it rest for 20-30 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more tender and juicy bird.

Tips for Success:

  • Monitor the temperature closely. Use a reliable thermometer to ensure consistent heat throughout the cooking process.
  • Don’t overcook the turkey. Overcooked turkey can be dry and tough. Use a thermometer to avoid this culinary faux pas.
  • Use indirect heat. Avoid placing the turkey directly over the heat source. This helps prevent burning and ensures even cooking.
  • Experiment with different wood types. Explore various wood options like apple, cherry, hickory, or mesquite to personalize your smoky flavor profile.
  • Rest the turkey before carving. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more succulent and flavorful bird.

With these tips and a little practice you’ll be a master of smoking turkeys on your Weber grill impressing your guests with a Thanksgiving feast they’ll never forget.

Additional Resources:

Smoked Turkey

By Mike Lang Serves: 7-8

One fourteen-pound fresh or frozen turkey, quartered, ½ cup unsalted butter, one teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary, one teaspoon chopped fresh thyme, and one orange with zest, olive oil, salt, and pepper, butcher twineWeber Connect Smart Grilling Hub and

1. Bring the butter to room temperature and mix with the rosemary and thyme.

2. With a pair of poultry shears, remove the wing tips.

3. Starting at the bottom cavity, use your fingers to separate the turkey’s skin from the breast meat. Work slowly up towards the neck being careful not to split or tear the skin.

4. Pat the turkey dry with paper towels.

Tip: For crispy skin, leave the turkey uncovered in the refrigerator overnight.

5. Season the outside of the turkey with salt, pepper, and the orange zest. Rub all over with olive oil.

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The last turkey I smoked was during one of our Weber product photo shoots earlier this year. It was a big bird that would undoubtedly be the center of attention during the holiday dinner scene if it was anything like the turkey we had smoked a few days earlier. Sadly, I never got a bite, and worse, the turkey never even made it to the set.

It was the last shot of the day, and bad weather was moving in. We were scrambling. The real family, who constituted the scene’s talent, had barely settled in when the storm struck. In fact, it was not just a storm, it was a microburst, or rather a non-rotating tornado.

Our grill camp in the front drive descended into wet chaos as the crew scrambled for cover in the backyard. We dropped our pop-up tents, stashed our supplies into trucks, and got wet, real wet. Branches fell down around us, and the power went out in the neighborhood we were shooting in. To put it professionally, it was nuts.

We decided to end the day as we waited for the weather to clear, which it eventually did. Luckily, it was the final shot of a very productive week as well as the final shot of the day.

Turning around to examine what was left of our grill station, I discovered that our Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker was still upright and, more significantly, still producing smoke. Under the lid, the turkey was to temperature. It looked beautiful, and the owners of the home we were using suddenly had dinner.

There were other things submerged in water than me, so I refrained from taking a picture with my phone to preserve the memory.

So here it is a few months later and what I am craving? Yeah, smoked turkey. Here’s the process, this time with great weather.

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