Smoked Turkey with BBQ Gravy

Total Time:
15 hr 55 min
Prep:
35 min
Inactive:
7 hr 20 min
Cook:
8 hr

Yield:
12 servings
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • Rub:
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons ground sage
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons thyme
  • 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon Neelys Seasoning, recipe follows
  • Turkey Brine:
  • 1 gallon water
  • 2 cups salt
  • 3 cups apple juice
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 (22-pound) turkey
  • Olive oil
  • 4 cups hickory wood chips, soaked in water for 60 minutes
  • BBQ Gravy, recipe follows
  • For the rub:
  • Neelys Seasoning:
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups paprika
  • 3 3/4 tablespoons onion powder
  • BBQ Gravy:
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Drumstick, from turkey
  • Neck, from turkey
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 8 cups turkey stock or chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup BBQ Sauce (recommended: Neelys BBQ Sauce)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Directions
For the rub:

Mix all ingredients in a small bowl and reserve.

For the brine:

Mix the water, salt, apple juice, bourbon, peppercorn, and sugar into a 5-gallon bucket lined with a resealable bag. Stir until the salt and sugar is dissolved. Add the turkey into the bag with the brine. In a garbage bag-lined ice chest filled with ice, place the bucket in and surround with ice. Keep in a cool place and let brine 6 hours or overnight. Turn the turkey after 3 hours. Remove turkey from the brine and pat dry with paper towels.

Rub the turkey with olive oil and massage the rub onto the Turkey.

Soak wood chips for 1 hour prior to cooking the turkey and drain well. Fill the chimney starter with charcoal and light. Burn until they ash over. Place the burned coals to 1 side of the grill. Place wood chips on top of coals. Line a standard size loaf pan with aluminum foil and fill 2/3 with water. Place in the grill opposite the coals.

Take the turkey and place on the grill over the pan of water. Insert a probe thermometer in the thigh to keep a check on the temperature as it cooks. Place the lid on the grill with the vent open.

The temperature should remain constant at 225 degrees F. You may need to add more coals and chips every few hours.

After 1 hour check the turkey, if the skin is golden brown cover with foil. Continue cooking for 4 to 6 more hours or until a probe thermometer reaches 160 degrees F.

Remove from the oven and let rest 20 minutes before you carve. Serve with BBQ Gravy.

Neelys Seasoning:

Mix ingredients together and store in an air tight container for up to 6 months.

BBQ Gravy:

Heat the vegetable oil in a saucepan on medium-high heat. Add the drumstick and neck and sear until brown. Remove from pan and reserve.

Lower heat and saute the onions. Add the stock, scrapping up the fond on the bottom of the pan. Add the drumstick and neck into the saucepan. Cover and let simmer until it comes to a boil; about 1 hour. Sauce will reduce down greatly. Remove turkey parts. Add BBQ sauce to pan and whisk together. Gravy will thicken. Season with salt and pepper.


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Pairs Well With
Cabernet Sauvignon

Rich, intense red wine

  • Find easy pairings for your favorite recipes, Bobby's perfect picks and party ideas.
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    This recipe is featured in:

    Top Turkeys for Thanksgiving