Master the Art of Smoking a Turkey with Pit Boss: Your Guide to Thanksgiving Glory

You’re in for a pleasant surprise if you own a Pit Boss and haven’t tried a Pit Boss smoked turkey! This tasty turkey with a simple maple BBQ rub is so juicy and flavorful, with a perfectly crispy and browned skin, and it can be smoked to perfection in less than three hours! Recipes for smoked turkey are a wonderful way to reinvent a beloved holiday dish or a refreshing summertime substitute for chicken!

Are you ready to ditch the dry, overcooked turkey and impress your guests with a juicy, flavorful masterpiece? Look no further than your Pit Boss smoker! This guide will walk you through the steps of smoking a turkey to perfection, ensuring a Thanksgiving feast that will be remembered for years to come.

Why Smoke a Turkey?

Smoking your turkey unlocks a world of flavor and texture that traditional roasting simply can’t match. The low and slow cooking process infuses the meat with a rich, smoky aroma and keeps it incredibly moist, resulting in a tender, melt-in-your-mouth experience

What You’ll Need:

  • A full turkey (12-14 pounds)
  • Turkey brining kit
  • 1 gallon of water, cold
  • 1 gallon + 4 cups water, warm
  • Your favorite seasoning or rub
  • Pit Boss wood pellet smoker

Step-by-Step Guide:

  1. Thawing the Turkey:

First things first, ensure your turkey is completely thawed. Allow 24 hours of thawing time in the refrigerator for every five pounds of turkey. For a 12-14 pound bird, plan for three to four days of thawing.

  1. Brining for Maximum Flavor:

Brining is the secret weapon for a juicy, flavorful turkey. It helps retain moisture and prevents the meat from drying out during the smoking process. Use a brining kit for convenience, adding the mixture and four cups of water to a saucepan and bringing to a boil. Combine this with one gallon of cold water and place the turkey in the bag. Refrigerate for one hour per pound of turkey, preferably overnight.

  1. Seasoning and Smoking:

After brining, rinse the turkey and pat it dry. Apply your favorite seasoning or rub to the skin. Start your Pit Boss smoker and set it to 275°F. Place the turkey on the smoker and insert a temperature probe into the deepest part of the breast. Cook until the breast and thigh meat reach an internal temperature of 165°-170°F.

  1. Rest and Serve:

Once the turkey reaches the desired temperature, remove it from the smoker and let it rest for about 20 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more tender and flavorful bird. Carve and serve to your hungry guests, and prepare to be showered with compliments!

Pro Tips:

  • Experiment with different wood pellet flavors like Pitmaster’s Choice, Apple, Pecan, Cherry, or Hickory to add unique smoky notes to your turkey.
  • For an extra kick, try our Sweet Heat Cajun Spatchcock Turkey recipe for a Thanksgiving meal with a spicy twist.
  • Don’t forget to check out our extensive library of recipes and resources on the Pit Boss website for more inspiration and guidance.

Smoking a turkey with your Pit Boss is a surefire way to elevate your Thanksgiving feast to a whole new level. By following these simple steps and using the right tools, you can create a juicy, flavorful, and unforgettable centerpiece for your holiday gathering. So, fire up your smoker, grab your turkey, and get ready to experience the magic of smoked turkey perfection!

The Perfect Pit Boss Smoked Turkey with Maple BBQ Rub

Hi everyone, today I’m giving my husband Justin a blog takeover with this amazing smoked turkey recipe that we made for a small get-together the other weekend. We needed to thaw a turkey we had in our freezer for a less formal gathering because it was the holiday season.

The appeal of a smoked turkey lies in its more relaxed preparation style, which is typically reserved for formal events. This recipe for smoked turkey is delicious and simple to make, and it can be enjoyed in any season.

This turkey recipe is perfect if you’re the type of cook who prefers to set it and forget it. It’s simple, it’s versatile and it’s gosh darn easy and delicious. This recipe requires a lot of patience to execute, but the results are well worth the effort. The results speak for themselves.

Hey, anyone can cook a turkey on the Pit Boss if I can! Justin can take it from here!

Why smoke a turkey?

Smoking your turkey is a long process of love but it is one that’s pretty hands off and basically just requires patience. In time your turkey will be finished cooking and with that, you will have a crispy skinned bird with juicy meat inside. Together every bite is a wonderful combination of flavor and taste. Even the leftovers taste incredible!

How do you smoke a turkey in a pit boss pellet smoker?

One of the easiest ways to smoke a turkey on a Pit Boss pellet smoker is to spatchcock the turkey, then place it right on the grill grate to cook. The spatchcock method allows for even cooking of the bird and gets more surface area of the turkey browned and crispy.

There’s nothing better than juicy, tender meat underneath perfectly crispy and browned skin. This is the BEST smoked turkey recipe when you follow along with the step by step instructions. It doesn’t get much easier than this!

For this smoker method, I kept the temperature lower at 300F for most of the cooking time, then increased the temperature to 350F for the last half an hour to reach that ideal level of browning and crispiness on the skin and seal in the moisture.

What kind of pellets should I use?

I recommend the Pit Boss competition blend pellets, but you can use any pellets you prefer. If you want to stick with the pit boss brand then you have a lot of great and flavorful options including charcoal pellets, Georgia pecan, mesquite, a classic blend, hickory, apple, and fruit-flavored too.

Pick and choose which ones you want and create a wonderful and subtle taste of heaven in every bird.

Note that you do not have to stick with the Pitboss brand pellets for this recipe if you do not want to. Other brand pellets will work just fine in this recipe and can offer you a bigger flavor variety as well.

Is a pit boss smoker electric or gas?

Pit boss makes smokers that are electric and they make some that are gas. For this recipe, I am using my gas smoker but you are more than welcome to use an electric smoker if your turkey can fit.

Note that you can still use wooden pellets inside of your electric smoker so go right on ahead and enjoy a smoked turkey that is sure to have you dreaming of the holidays all year long.

How long does it take to smoke a turkey on a pit boss smoker?

Cooking time all depends on the size of your bird and if you use the spatchcock method or not. We went with a smaller-sized 5-7kg young turkey, and the total smoking time was 2.5 hours.

If you have a larger turkey, but still use the spatchcock method you can estimate approximately 25 minutes per kg, so a larger 9kg turkey will take approximately 3 hrs and 45 minutes (using the spatchcock method).

What is spatchcock turkey?

Spatchcocking means to butterfly the bird. This is when you remove the backbone of the chicken or turkey and lay it out flat to cook. When you do this, the cooking time significantly decreases and the bird cooks faster and more evenly.

With a more level surface space, the breasts and the thighs can cook and finish at about the same time instead of one before the other. There’s also more skin exposed to the heating elements so that means that the skin gets even crispier.

Should I spatchcock my turkey?

If you have the space for it, I always recommend it. This added butchering step really helps to provide you with the best holiday turkey results. By spatchcocking a turkey you can really shave down on the amount of time needed to cook it. By a rule of thumb, an oven-roasted turkey that was spatchcocked would take about ⅓ of the required time to cook.

When you smoke a spatchcocked turkey you allow more surface to be exposed for the flavorful pellets to penetrate as well so that means that your entire bird tastes incredible and that no areas are left unflavored.

So it is up to you whether or not you would like to try this method of cooking but there really are no downsides to it. You will need some strong kitchen shears and a large sharp knife to do this as that backbone can be a bit tough to get out, but after that, it’s practically as easy as a cakewalk!

Should you wrap a turkey in foil when smoking?

No. When spatchcocking a turkey, wrapping it with tin foil on the smoker is not required. Nor is it desired.

You want the smoke to penetrate the meat during smoking and tin foil would prevent this key aspect of the cooking. Not only that but it would also prevent the turkey from browning too much so you’d be left with a plain looking bird instead of one that’s golden delicious!

Also, because of the relatively short cooking period, the turkey is not at risk of getting dried out and therefore you don’t need to worry about covering it with foil to help seal in the moisture.

Without foil, this crispier skin turkey is still super juicy and delicious!

Smoked Turkey with Maple BBQ Rub Ingredients

To prepare this smoking turkey, and the barbecue rub, you do not need many ingredients. The rub is very simple to make but packs a ton of flavor.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 5-7kg young turkey (neck and turkey giblets removed)
  • Butter (or non-dairy butter like Earth Balance)

Maple BBQ Rub:

  • Onion flakes
  • Garlic powder
  • Paprika
  • Montreal chicken spice mix
  • Dried thyme
  • Salt
  • Pure maple syrup

The combination of sweet and salty works so well with the smoky flavor created by the Pit Boss and the rub creates a nice crispy, caramelized skin that locks in the moisture of the turkey meat.

How To Prepare, Step-by-Step:

While Christal is a great cook, she definitely is not a pro with the Pit Boss. So, I walked her through the process of preparing her first smoked turkey and she was pleasantly surprised at how easy it really was.

This is pretty much a “set it and forget it” recipe. The great thing about smoking a turkey as compared to oven-roasting is that you don’t have to baste the turkey over and over again to avoid a dry bird.

Here’s what you’ll do:

1. Spatchcock the turkey with kitchen shears, then open it and lay flat. Place it cut-side down on a large baking/roasting pan. Then, rub 1 tablespoon of butter all over the turkey skin.

2. In a bowl combine the dry rub spices with the maple syrup and mix, then pour over the turkey and rub all over the skin, into the breast and legs to generously coat, then set aside.

3. Turn on the Pit Boss and set the temperature to 300 degrees F, pre-heat with the lid closed for 15 minutes.

4. Transfer the turkey directly from the pan onto the Pit Boss grill grate and close the lid.

5. Smoke for approximately 2 hours or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees F.

6. Increase the smoker temperature to 350F and baste the turkey with the remaining 2 tablespoons of maple syrup, and smoke until internal temperature reaches 165F(approx. 30 mins). A larger bird takes longer.

7. When finished, remove turkey from the smoker, cover with tin foil and let rest for 15 minutes, then carve as desired, serve, and enjoy!

This easy recipe for Pit Boss smoked turkey with maple barbecue rub is perfect for beginners or experts alike. It’s easy, delicious, and great for a small gathering of friends or family.

Serve this smoked turkey for Thanksgiving dinner or all year long so you can use the leftovers (if any) to make the tastiest leftover turkey sandwiches! There’s never a wrong time for a delicious turkey dinner!.

Tell me about your experience cooking a whole turkey on a Pit Boss in the comments section below, and don’t forget to pin the recipe’s photo for later!

how to smoke a turkey in a pit boss smoker

Smoked Turkey On A Pit Boss Pellet Smoker

How do you cook a smoked turkey in a pit boss smoker?

1. Preheat your Pit Boss smoker to 225 degrees F. 2. In a large bowl, combine the apple juice, vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and black pepper. 3. Rinse the turkey inside and out and pat dry. 4. Place the turkey in a large roasting pan and pour the marinade over it. 5.

Can you smoke a Turkey on a pit boss Grill?

Smoking a turkey on a Pit Boss grill is a rewarding culinary adventure that can elevate your Thanksgiving or any special occasion to a whole new level. With the proper preparation, temperature control, and a bit of patience, you can create a turkey that’s not only beautifully smoky but also incredibly juicy and flavorful.

Can you smoke a Turkey on a pellet grill?

A: Here are a few common mistakes to avoid when smoking a turkey on a pellet grill: * Using too much wood smoke. Too much wood smoke can make the turkey taste bitter. * Smoking the turkey at too high of a temperature. Smoking the turkey at too high of a temperature can dry out the meat.

What happens if you smoke a Turkey pit boss?

There are a few common problems that can occur when smoking a turkey pit boss, including: * The turkey is dry. This can be caused by cooking the turkey at too high of a temperature or not basting it regularly. * The turkey is undercooked. This can be caused by cooking the turkey at too low of a temperature or not smoking it for long enough.

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