How to Smoke a Turkey with Apple Wood
Thanksgiving is our favorite time for smoked turkey experimentation. It is a perfect and absolutely delicious meal for the holidays or pretty much any time of the year. Anyone who loves this smoked bird will definitely like this fantastic recipe.
This smoked turkey is rubbed with different ingredients and smoked over a bed of apple woods. At the end of the cooking process, the meat is tender, moist and we can say that it is one of the best meals we ever made and tried!
So, if you want to know more about apple wood smoked turkey recipe, all you have to do is read on.
What you will need:
- Minced white onion, 2 tbsp.
- Diced tomatoes, ¼ cup
- Diced dill pickle, 2 tbsp.
- Mayonnaise, ½ cup
- Vinegar (use the one from the hot pepper’s jar), 2 tsp.
- Salt to taste
1. Brine the Turkey:
We recommend that you brine the meat before you smoke it. But, first, you need to wash the turkey and pat it dry.
After that mix the ingredients such as apple cider or apple juice, maple syrup, brown sugar and salt in a large container, until you dissolve the sugar.
Soak the turkey in the brine, in a non-metal container, for about 17 to 24 hours in the refrigerator. Don't forget to cover it.
2. Smoke the Meat
- First, you need to prepare your electric smoker for the cooking process. Turn it on and set the desired temperature at 250 degrees F. If you want to smoke a whole turkey, you should know that it will take you longer to prepare it.
- Remove the meat from the brine and place it under the running water to rinse it off. Use paper towels to pat it dry. When you have done that part correctly, put it on the top of smoking racks. Place unsoaked or soaked apple wood which will give the food a smoky flavor that tastes better. You could also use a combination of wet and dry wood, alternating between two. The moist chunks provide slower, lower smoke and bring the temperature down. The dry one gives an intense and quick smoke which brings the heat up.
- Make sure that the temperature is right. Use the meat probe and thermometer that comes with the unit, and monitor the time and temperature settings. That way you will be sure that your food won’t overcook. If it is necessary, you can low the temperature even more, or increase it. That all depends on your personal preferences and the amount of time you have for the cooking process. Make sure not to open the door of the smoker too much because it can reduce the amount of smoke and heat inside the cooking chamber.
- To test for doneness use a meat thermometer. Check the meal every hour, and control the temp. Smoke the turkey until the internal heat of this food reaches 175 degrees F, and until the dark bark forms. That should take for about five hours if you are preparing a whole turkey. After four hours of cooking, check the meat and see how much longer it should take for the bird to be done. In general, it should take about 21 minutes per pound of meat to be ready.
- Remove turkey from the smoker when it is done. Leave it to rest for about ten minutes before carving it. That will allow the meat fibers to relax, and the moisture that was removed is reabsorbed and redistributed by dissolved proteins. When the turkey can rest it will hold on to its natural juices.
- Slice the meat into ½ inch slices, against the grain. If it is juicy and moist, you can be sure that you have smoked it perfectly. You can serve it as a sandwich, or you can serve it sliced on a plate with some potatoes or other vegetables you and your family prefer. This meal is best when you eat it immediately.
- You can also store it in the refrigerator and use it later. We must say that the smoked flavor is better when the turkey is cold. But the great thing is that no matter how or when you serve it, this meal will always be juicy and tender.
- In general, leftovers stay fresh two to three days in the fridge but can be frozen up to one month.
Nutrition of Turkey
Turkey is high in protein and low in fat. It is an inexpensive source of B vitamins, potassium, phosphorus, zinc and iron. It is smart to keep it in your diet because it is a good source of healthy lean proteins. It also contains selenium and niacin.
‘’Getting enough protein helps maintain lean muscle mass and keep insulin levels stable after meals. Protein is, however, the one nutrient that most meat-eaters are already getting in sufficient amounts. The tryptophan content in turkey may help to support healthy levels of serotonin in the body, which promotes alertness and good mood.’’ according to Medical News Today.
Nothing impresses like a perfectly smoked turkey when it comes to special family and friend gatherings. Our recipe can take this meat to the new smoky heights, especially if you are using a high-quality electric smoker. Cooking it adequately with the apple wood ensures that this bird stays tender and juicy.
These chips lend a slightly fruity and sweet flavor to the turkey. You could also try with some other wood such as alder or cherry. They are great for more delicate smoked taste, but, if you love to experiment with different ones be free to do it.
You can also use some other ingredients for the brining process. That depends on your personal preferences. Follow our recipe, and you will learn to make the best turkey meal you have ever tried. It doesn’t matter if you have never smoked the meat before. The process is easy so that you won’t have any difficulties with it. Just use the right smoker, and you will soon cook like a pro!