Smoked my first two turkey breasts


Tim McG

TVWBB Member
Had a pretty big Friendsgiving party on Wednesday, around 30 or so people. Someone deep fried a turkey, someone over roasted a turkey, and I smoked two turkey breasts. It was my first time smoking any turkey in my WSM but they turned out great. Here is how it went down...

Two natural turkey breasts from Wegmans, ~5.5lbs each. Rinsed, dried, trimmed some excess skin.


Sat in brine for about 24 hours. Apple juice / brown & white sugar / salt / honey. Took out, rinsed, dried, and stuck in the fridge overnight. Before putting on the smoker, I put some oil on both, and seasoned one with some dry rub. I went pretty light with it since the brine had a lot of salt and I didn't want to overdo it.


Firing up the smoker. After reading a lot of posts on this board, I was afraid I would have trouble getting the temp up to 325-350. After dumping on the lit charcoal, I let it sit for a good 5+ minutes before assembling the smoker. It actually got up to 500 degrees really quickly and I had to cut it back to get the temp down. Had her running 325-350 the entire session once it was dialed in. No water in the foil pan, and two foil drip pans on the 2nd grates to catch any drippings. Used a few big chunks of apple wood.



Pulled when the breast got around 152-153 - this took about 1 hour 45 minutes. Then I let them sit on the counter completely uncovered for 30 minutes before carving. The one on the right was the one with the rub. Both were extremely juicy and the skin wasn't terrible, but the seasoned bird definitely tasted better - next time I'm going to make sure to use a lot of dry rub on it (including under the skin).



I definitely got a lot of great info from the boards here. Can't wait to smoke some more birds in the future. Everyone at the party loved the smoked turkey and thought it blew the deep fried bird away!!


TVWBB Olympian
Congrats on a very successful cook. The one thing about Turkeys, you learn something new with each cook

Gary S

Tim they look really good. You might want to have a look at, Simon & Garfunkel rub. It's a great poultry seasoning under the skin with or without some butter. I don't brine but I do inject it as well with butter and stock. You do have to grind it up finer when you inject.


Dwain Pannell

TVWBB Hall of Fame
Outstanding cook. Better be careful though. You'll be tagged to do more and more turkeys when they come out that great and people start talking. LOL

I do have a small concern with placing your cooker on that tarp. You might get it a bit warm. Keep an eye on that.

Barb D

TVWBB Hall of Fame
That was some amazing smoking you did on the turkey breast, beautiful finish and looks so yummy!

Tim McG

TVWBB Member
I do have a small concern with placing your cooker on that tarp. You might get it a bit warm. Keep an eye on that.

This was at a friends' house and he insisted on using the tarp for whatever reason. Luckily we didn't have any issues. When I smoke at home I put the WSM on some concrete blocks on the driveway.