A smoker can help you bring out the best in any meat, and this smoked turkey breast is no exception. Smoked on a pellet grill leaving you with a juicy, succulent and packed full of flavor, that transforms this simple cut of meat into a celebratory dish that all your guests will love.
Smoking turkey may sound a little daunting, but with just some simple equipment and a few ingredients, it’s something that any home cook can easily master. So, this year, why not give your oven a break and give Smoked Turkey Breast a try?
While it is most commonly found served as a whole bird, turkey breast is a fantastic celebration meal for smaller families or groups and is easily enough to feed 6 to 8 people.
Particularly good for those who aren’t the biggest fan of dark meat, a turkey breast provides a lot of delicious white meat with barely any bone to work around (while you can use a boneless breast for this recipe, bone-in will give you a little extra flavor).
Fresh or frozen turkey breast can be used for this recipe, though if you are using a frozen turkey make sure to allow plenty of time for thawing before you’d like to cook. To give you an idea, a 6 or 7lb turkey breast will take around a day and a half to thaw in the refrigerator.
Simply leave the turkey breast in its original packaging and place the bird on a tray or pan in the fridge to collect any juices. Ideally, you want to place it at the bottom of the fridge so there’s no chance of it contaminating anything below.
You don’t have as much control over a smoker as you would an oven, but as long as you keep your cooking temperature between 250 and 300 degrees F then your Smoked Turkey Breast should go off without a hitch.
The cooking time will depend on the weight of your turkey and the kind of grill you use. A good guideline is to allow around 30 minutes per pound. However, you will want to keep an eye on your meat, as no two birds will cook at quite the same time.
The best way to check for doneness is to use a meat thermometer, as this method of cooking can make it hard to tell simply by looking.
As long as the thickest part of your turkey breast has a reading of 165 degrees F, then you will know that it is cooked through and safe to eat.
As stated above, smoking your turkey breast will depend on the size of turkey breast you are smoking. For this recipe, we used a 5 ½ Pound breast for a total of 5/12 to cook the turkey breast.
All of this will also depend on the machine you are using. Not every two smokers are the same. If you are using an electric smoker, reduce the time 1 hour.
How To Smoke Turkey On A Pellet Grill
Follow the steps below to show you how to smoke a turkey on a pellet grill with ease.
Wash the turkey breast, pat dry, and set aside. We have a full tutorial on how to clean a turkey here.
In a medium size bowl, melt the butter. Then add the white wine vinegar, Cajun seasoning, paprika, and Dijon mustard.
Mix the seasoning well to combine. Use a pastry brush and apply the seasoning to all sides of the meat.
Place the meat on the smoking rack. Cook for 3 hours at 300 degrees, then reduce the heat to 200 degrees and cook for 2 hours to 2 ½ hours.
Frequently Asked Question(s)
If you are smoking a boneless turkey breast, decrease the time by 1 ½ .
It will take about 5 ½ to 6 hours to smoke a turkey breast that’s between 5 to 6 ½ pounds.
It takes about 35 to 45 minutes to smoke a breast per pound.
This Smoked Turkey breast will go perfectly with all your usual Thanksgiving side dishes, and can be served in the exact same way you would a roasted turkey breast.
Roasted brussels sprouts or glazed carrots, sweet potato casserole or this Country Style Mashed Potatoes and even this Haitian mac and cheese are just a few ideas.
You can also pair with this Salad Niçoise Recipe.
Learning how to smoke a turkey on a pellet grill properly will make a difference in the enjoyment of the finished dish. Consider the following tips listed below.
Do not stuff the turkey breast. This will keep the meat from cooking properly. You need the bird to be as “free” as possible so that it is cooked inside and out.
Do not use a roasting pan when smoking your meat. As the meat releases the juice, this will cause the meat to become soggy.
Be sure to check the temperature of the meat, always! White meat takes less time to cook at 165 degrees while dark meat is ready at 175 degrees.
Which Pellets To Use
You can use any pellets you’d like. Read the instructions on your Pellet Grill / Smoker to see which pellets are best to use. Our personal favorites are pecan, apple, and maple as they have a sweeter “taste”.
How To Store
If you happen to have any leftovers, your Smoked Turkey Breast can also be used to make turkey noodle soup or simply transformed into delicious turkey sandwiches.
More Turkey Recipes You’ll Enjoy
If you love this smoked turkey recipe, we recommend trying one of these recipes next.
SALAD RECIPES TO ENJOY WITH THIS RECIPE
In addition to the salad Niçoise, here are a few other salads to enjoy with this turkey breast.
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How To Smoke A Turkey Breast
- Pellet Smoker / Grill
- Turkey Breast We used a 5.53 Lbs. Turkey Breast
- 1 Stick Butter Unsalted and melted
- 2 Tbsp. White Wine Vinegar
- 2 Tsp. Kosher Salt
- 2 Tbsp. Cajun Seasoning
- 1 Tbsp. Paprika
- 2 Tbsp. Dijon Mustard
- Wash the turkey breast, pat dry, and set aside. We have a full tutorial on how to clean a turkey here.In a medium size bowl, melt the butter. Then add the white wine vinegar, salt, Cajun seasoning, paprika, and Dijon mustard.
- Mix the seasoning well to combine. Use a pastry brush and apply the seasoning to all sides of the meat.Place the meat on the smoking rack. Cook for 3 hours at 300 degrees, then reduce the heat to 200 degrees and cook for 2 hours to 2 ½ hours.