Traeger Smoked Whole Turkey

Serves 5 people
Total time: 240 min
Prep time: 25 min
Pellet type: Hickory
Smoke temp: 275 degrees
Internal temp: 165 degrees

Most weeknights you might get away with a smoked turkey breast but for Sunday night or the one and only Thanksgiving we need the entire turkey! Today’s recipe will walk you through the process of smoking an entire bird. You’ll be shocked at how easy this is!

Ingredients For Preparing A Smoked Whole Turkey

An entire turkey smoked with just four ingredients? I’m not pulling your (turkey) leg! I told you this will be easy.

  • One whole turkey (defrosted) – 10 pounds*
  • 6 TBSP of your favorite poultry seasoning – I used Bone Sucking Sauce seasoning & rub
  • Half a stick of butter
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 8 inches of string/twine or unwaxed dental floss
  • Disposable pan (optional)

*note that cooking turkeys that are much larger than 10 pounds often results in a severely dried-out turkey. If you need additional meat, I highly recommend that you buy two smaller birds rather than a single large bird.


Smoking Directions:

  1. Turn your smoker on and bring it to 275 degrees.
  2. Remove the turkey from its package and remove the neck and any giblets found inside.
  3. Rinse the entire bird with water in your kitchen sink.
  4. Dry the entire turkey with paper towels.
  5. Use the 2-3 TBSP of olive oil and coat the entire exterior of the bird.
  6. Liberally rub the poultry seasoning both inside and outside of the bird.
  7. Pull back the skin on the turkey breast and rub the breast meat directly.
  8. After seasoning the breast, cut small slabs of butter and place several between the breast and the skin. You can also attempt to do this with the legs and the thighs as well although I often see it melt and drip off.
  9. Place the seasoned whole turkey directly on your pre-heated smoker.

Similar to all of our smokes, we will want to smoke the turkey until it reaches the correct temperature, not by a specific time. We are aiming for 165 degrees which for this particular bird took a little over 4 hours (or ~25 minutes per pound).  Make sure you use a digital thermometer and measure the temperature in both the thigh and the breast before pulling off the smoker.

(optional step) By now you guys know I love the “set it and forget it” approach with my smokes. However, If you want, you can use a heat-safe bowl, fill with additional butter/seasoning and keep it right next to your turkey on your smoker. You can then baste to your heart is content. I for one am happy with less work and a just as tasty end result.

Recipe Step By Step (How-To) Images

Enjoy this recipe? Consider supporting this website

Buy your bbq pellets via this amazon link and you’ll support the site at no additional cost to you.

Traeger Smoked Whole Turkey Breast

A full-proof smoked turkey recipe that anyone can cook. Great for Thanksgiving or for a large weekend meal!
4.63 from 8 votes
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!