T Nation

Charcoal Smoked Turkey Breast


Time to up my game on the grill and try something new. Today it was applewood smoked turkey breast, and here is how it went down.

I got a full turkey breast - this means the ribcage with two half breasts still attached - from a bird that was pretty big. The bird was maybe 25 lbs, making the breast ~12 pounds and the breast meat alone ~8 pounds.

The skin was removed and saved for later, and then the two meaty halves of the breast were removed from the bone by starting at the breastbone, and then cutting down to the ribs and following along the ribs until the meat came free.

Each half breast was salted on both sides and one was flipped 180 degrees so it was a turkey breast 69, making a more evenly sized unit. The skin was draped back over and kitchen twine tied the skin back on. This rested in the fridge for an hour to let the salt dissolve.

While the turkey was resting, I started a chimney of charcoal, pouring it on one side of the grill. Apple wood chips went on the charcoals, and a pan of water was placed directly over the hot coals. The turkey went on the cool side after being oiled and peppered, and was flipped every 30 minutes for the next ~3 hours until the internal temp was 150 degrees. The bird came off the grill and rested for 30 min until the internal temp was 165 degreees.

This is what she looked like on the grill.


Here she is after pulling it from the grill. Temp in the very center was ~150 degrees, time to rest for 30 minutes and test my self control.


The final plate, with bacon brussels sprouts and cous cous. yum!


Nice. I just happened to buy a pre-boned turkey breast yesterday and was going to start hunting around the internet for outdoor grilling ideas today. Incredible timing.

Thanks for the delicious post!


Turkey is really underrated I think.

Great post. Will try this.




Looks tasty!


Needs more bacon.


That is sexy as hell~


I just have one question - did you slice through the ribs with one stroke? =D

Looks awesome!