Hello friends and Happy Thanksgiving!
Please be sitting down for this… this year we have decided to eat out on Thanksgiving Day. I know… I know… but my in-laws are in town and they wanted to spend quality time with Mrs. Buddha and me. However, I didn’t want this time of year to pass without cooking some seasonal food and sharing that with you. In addition, leftovers are an important thing to have around the house in order to make sandwiches for a late night snack! There was a beautiful split turkey breast calling my name at the grocery store begging to be smoked on my Big Green Egg. This recipe is simple and the perfect meal if you are hosting a smaller gathering for the holidays. Now sit back, grab a glass of this year’s beaujolais nouveau, and enjoy this post for Smoked Brined Split Turkey Breast.
Smoked Brined Split Turkey Breast
The Pioneer Woman has a great turkey brine recipe that was scaled down for this cook. Fresh orange peel, rosemary, garlic, salt, black peppercorns, brown sugar, and apple cider come together to form this perfect brine. Making the brine is easy: mix the ingredients in a large pot, bring to a boil, turn off the heat, cover, and allow to sit until it cools completely.
After the ingredients cool it is time to combine the turkey breast with the brine and let sit in the refrigerator overnight.
After the turkey breast sat in the brine all night it was time to set up the Big Green Egg for indirect cooking using a convEGGerator. The temperature was stabilized to 250° using a mix of apple and pecan chunks for the smoke. While the BGE was coming up to temp the turkey breast was removed from the brine and placed in cool water for 15 minutes to remove excess salt. Once the BGE was ready the turkey breast was patted dry and covered in Pork U – TurkeysMatter. I love this seasonal Rub from Pork U as it melds all the flavors of Thanksgiving in to one rub with hints of pecan, garlic, sage, rosemary, and brown sugar.
After 1.5 hours the turkey breast measured 140° internally using a Thermapen and it was time to crank the temp up to 300° on the Big Green Egg to get that crispy skin.
After 30 minutes at 300° the skin was nice and brown, the internal temp measured 155°, and it was time to take the turkey breast out and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
This made for a fantastic dinner and gave us a few slices to use for sandwiches the next day. The turkey meat was so moist and tender thanks to the brine.
- 1 Split Turkey breast
- BBQ Rub
- 1.5 cups Apple Juice Or Apple Cider
- 1 gallon Cold Water
- 2 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary Leaves
- 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
- ¾ cup Kosher Salt
- 1 cups Brown Sugar
- 1.5 Tablespoons Peppercorns
- 2 whole Bay Leaves
- Peel Of Two Large Oranges
- Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Bring to a boil, then turn off heat and cover.
- Allow to cool completely, then pour into a large brining bag or pot. Place uncooked turkey in brine solution, then refrigerate for 16 to 24 hours.
- When ready to roast turkey, remove turkey from brine. Submerge turkey in a pot or sink of fresh, cold water. Allow to sit in clean water for 15 minutes to remove excess salt from the outside.
- Discard brine. Remove turkey from clean water, pat dry, and cook according to your normal roasting method.
- Pat turkey breast dry and apply BBQ rub
- Set up the Big Green Egg for indirect cooking measured to 250°
- Use a drip pan full of water sitting on top of the convEGGerator
- Add chunks of a light flavored wood (e.g. Pecan, Apple) for the smoke
- Once the temp stabilizes and you see the thin blue smoke place the turkey breast inside
- Smoke for 1.5 hours or until the turkey measures 145° internally
- Increase the heat in the Big Green Egg to 300° and cook turkey for another 30 minutes or until it measures 155° internally
- Remove the turkey breast and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving