Looking for ways to add some flair to your holiday fowl? Why not put it on the grates for a smoke bath? We know that there are sticklers for a traditional Thanksgiving turkey, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But for those who are interested in thinking outside the oven, we have compiled our top 10 reasons to smoke your holiday turkey.  

1. Taste

This one should be obvious, smoked turkey is delicious! The compounds released through your smoker’s combustion will add rich roasted notes to the turkey as it soaks up those mouthwatering molecules. You can layer on the flavor by trying out different barbecue rubs, compound butters and woods to enhance the smoke.

2. Space in the Oven 

Ever been in a tense kitchen on Thanksgiving where there isn’t enough space for everyone’s dishes in the oven? We have, and it is without a doubt the best way to learn which relatives have the shortest temper. Save space in the oven for those delicious sides and pies by getting your bird onto the smoker! 

3. Adventurous Eaters 

We spoke a little about the stalwarts of turkey tradition, but what about those family members who are craving something new on Thanksgiving? Suggest they change out their can of cranberry sauce for some cranberry barbecue sauce with this year’s smoked turkey.

4. Comfy Clothes 

Ever wonder why people dress up so nicely on Thanksgiving only to eat so much they wish they were in sweats? While we don’t have the answer to this question, we have a solution for you – comfy clothes! You’re the pitmaster, and there’s no sense in dressing up to get grease all over yourself. They will understand, especially after they taste your turkey!

5. Time to Relax 

They all think you’re truly dedicated to your craft. Little do they know, you can just set it and forget it! Take some time for yourself this holiday by the smoker. After all, you’re going to need a few more drinks before discussing politics with Uncle Rick. Enjoy a little Thanksgiving Day nirvana! 

6. A Big(ger) Bird 

Odds are that your smoker can hold a bigger turkey than your oven! Or maybe even a combo of a whole turkey and some turkey legs or thighs. Lucky you! The bigger the bird, the more tender, delicious meat you have for the table and leftovers. That brings us to our next point… 

7. Leftovers 

There are SO many possibilities with smoked turkey leftovers! They are delicious on pizza, in egg rolls or even on their own (maybe with a little BBQ sauce). While we would never begrudge a traditional Thanksgiving turkey, smoky flavor widens the scope of your leftover capabilities.  

8. Avoid Grandma’s Dry Turkey 

Sorry GamGam, but dry, overcooked turkey is not a holiday tradition we support. It’s time to take the reins, and that’s okay! If GamGam is hesitant, just let her know that you’d be happy to put a camping chair outside with a few cold ones and a blanket for her.

9. Practice Makes Perfect 

Family loving your food? Well, that’s a given. You never really can trust someone who’s getting to eat your food for free though, can you? If this smoke has you feeling confident, why not put your stuff up against the best of the best? Turkey Smoke runs competitions with KCBS throughout the year and we would love to see you out on the circuit! 

10. Playing with Your Toys 

Let’s be honest, it’s a joy to get on the smoker and work on our craft. That is a definite advantage to smoking your turkey. Don’t have a smoker? Well, this is your excuse to go out and get that bad boy! Use the previous nine reasons as ammunition when you launch your proposal to the boss (your partner).

Check out our video on what kind of grill/smoker is best for your turkey and which tools you’ll need with Ray “Dr.BBQ” Lampe!

There are so many reasons to smoke your turkey this Thanksgiving. Do you have a favorite one to add or a go-to smoked turkey recipe? Be sure to tag us at @TurkeySmokeBBQ and #TurkeySmoke when you post your holiday turkey creation! 

Looking for some recipe inspiration? Here are our five favorite smoked turkey recipes: