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Smoked Turkey Recipe

Difficulty 3/5
Prep time 30 mins

Cook time 7 hrs
Serves 6-8

Hardwood Pecan

Prepare your smoked turkey outside on the Traeger to free up oven space. Let that bird smoke its way to deliciousness while catching up with relatives on Thanksgiving. The smoked flavor will be worth getting scrappy over.


1 12 to 16 lb. Fresh or Frozen Turkey, Thawed (All Giblets Removed)

3 gallons Water

1 cup Traeger BBQ Rub

1 cup Sugar

1-1/2 Tbsp. Garlic, Minced

1/2 cup Worcestershire Sauce

2 Tbsp. Canola Oil


Plan ahead! This recipe requires brining overnight.

Ensure the turkey is fully thawed and remove any giblets.

Pour 3 gallons of water in a 5 gallon non-metal bucket. Add Traeger BBQ rub and mix until completely dissolved. Next add garlic, sugar, and Worcestershire sauce.

Place in bucket, breast side down into brine. Make sure that turkey is completely submerged in liquid. Cover bucket and place in refrigerator overnight.

Remove and pat dry. Rub canola oil over entire outside of turkey and place breast side up into disposable aluminum roasting pan.

When ready to cook, start Traeger grill on Smoke and open lid until fire is established (about 5 minutes).

Leave grill on Smoke and place the turkey on the grill and smoke for 2 1/2 to 3 hours.

Switch setting to 350 and cook for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, or until internal meat temperature reaches approximately 170 degrees.

Remove from grill and allow to rest for 15 minutes before slicing and carving

See our complete guide on how to smoke a turkey to learn more about cooking times, temperatures, and techniques.

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Post Falls
  • Idaho
Out of the 40 turkeys or so in my lifetime, this is easily one of the top 5 turkeys I've ever eaten. For me it came down to how juicy the meat was right off the grill and the day after when you want to make those turkey sandwiches...it makes my mouth water thinking about it now. This was our first turkey in the traeger and smoking and we will be cooking all of our turkeys in the traeger from now on.

We picked up about a 20# bird from the local super market. Be sure to pick up your aluminum roasting pan now to grill your bird.

We made our own brine...I think there where slices of oranges, sugar, salt, etc. Bottom line is that I think you can use just about any brine you mix up for the bird. A 5 gallon bucket is perfect we picked up from Home Depot. Our turkey was in the brine for 48 hrs.

We put the bird in the roasting pan and then put the aluminum roasting pan on a cookie sheet more for stability than anything else.

We smoked the bird for the 2.5 hours then turned up the temperature to the 350 degrees and cooked for about 4 hours just like the recipe says.

The only thing different that we changed up where the brine and we used the Gourmet blend of pellets from Costco for the smoking and cooking. Regardless, a delicious bird was the end result, just stick to the cooking times and you'll be fine.
Was this helpful? Yes159No  6

Lake Stevens
  • Washington
Super moist and flavorful!
This recipe is spot on! Very easy to pull together. This was the first turkey I had done on the smoker and it didn't disappoint! I did a 20 pound turkey and the cook time was right at 7 hours. Smoked for the first 3 and then kicked the heat up to 350. I used the Traeger Sweet rub and instead of canola oil I used extra virgin olive oil. Skin was nice a crispy and the turkey was moist and full of flavor. I used apple pellets as well in place of the suggested pecan. The only thing I would recommend is to use a roasting pan with a rack in it to elevate the bird up off pan a bit so it's not sitting in the juices. Other than that you really can't go wrong with this recipe if you have the time. Just set it and forget it. It allows you time to tend to other things or parts of the dinner.
Was this helpful? Yes71No  2

  • Idaho
First time with a turkey!
First time using a Traeger for turkey day. But it was pretty amazing. I was nervous about the brine w/out salt but stayed with the recipe! Perfection.

I used my trusty Smith and Wession Traeger,
Was this helpful? Yes26No  23



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