What Is The Best Wood For Smoking Turkey? Read On To Know The Answer

Even in the past, smoking has been used as a cooking method to preserve foods and enhance the flavors. At present, the smoking process has dramatically changed from cooking meals over smoke and fire to cooking foods using electricity and gas.

Despite the changes, various professional chefs and cooking experts still prefer the traditional way of doing things. Why? Well, it is mainly because of the smoke that makes the food even more desirable! 

But there could be one thing not many of you are aware of - the wood produces the smoke. So, what's the big deal about this? Some smoke is best suited for certain meats.

In this article, we have gathered five of the best woods for smoking turkey based on various reviews. 

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The Difference between Wood Chips and Wood Chunks

In the smoking world, there is much discussion on whether wood chunks or wood chips are the best material for smoking purposes. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, whereas a definite "winner" is difficult to define, requiring the person to choose and to use the wood for whatever their purpose may be.

The need to soak in water constitutes a significant distinction between the two types of wood. If this step is not applied, wood chips burn exceptionally quickly, before an adequate amount of smoke can be built.

Wood chunks, however, do not have to be soaked in advance, as the significant volume gives them the real benefit over the small chips in terms of sustainability. Regardless of how you soak it, more wood chips are often added to a grill or smoker than with wood chunks. 

As expected, the addition of more wood to the fire will necessitate opening the grill, discharging a great deal of heat and stored smoke each time, which means that any method which reduces heat loss and smoke loss is favorable to the general quality and taste of finished meat.

In that case, it can be more of a trouble to light the wood chunks at first. The small wood chips, as compared to large, dense wood chunks, are simpler to burn because of their size and surface area. Since wood chunks are broad and thick, it may take a while before they start smoking. But once they begin to burn, wood chunks always last longer than wood chips.

Wood Bark

As with the chunk and chip discussion, many smokers address another problem: to leave or to remove the bark from the smoking wood. Some people claim that the wood bark is more precious than the wood itself, while others claim it smells heavier or worse than wood

Others claim that the flavor the wood gives off is utterly unique while still insistent that it differs little if any from the general taste of your meat and that bark generates a stronger smoke ring on the cooked meat.

Since this issue seems highly subjective, it will also be a case of personal preference in terms of flavor and experimentation. Try to smoke and grill at distinct times with and without the bark to see if you can smell the distinction.

Choosing Wood for Smoking Turkey

Choosing Wood for Smoking Turkey

Perhaps the key to smoking red meat is the kind of wood to use to get some smoke from wood. The wood type used to smoke is where the mild aroma originates, so you need to pay close attention to what you're using before ending up with something almost inedible.

With turkey, you have to be cautious in selecting the wood, as a stronger smoke flavor and the corresponding bitter taste can readily overwhelm the natural taste of the meat.

Consider woods with a lighter taste, such as cherry wood, for a smoky-sweet and mild flavor rather than the denser, harsher woods like the most frequently used white oak or hickory or mesquite to add an extra subtle taste.

It can also be useful to combine wood to offer a sweet taste quality. For example, a combination of plum and maple would provide your turkey a mildly soft and smooth edge with a minor tendency of overpowering it. Also, excellent alternatives to utilize with turkey include mules, olives, nectarine, peach, and olive.  Experimentation is also crucial in discovering what you like and doesn't like, so don't worry about combining different tastes and trying new things.

Wood to Avoid

When smoking any meat, such as turkey, you must avoid eucalyptus, pine, elms, redwood, and cedars. These woods possess a robust flavor and will destroy your food thoroughly. There is no point of going back after that! Be aware, too, that they should not also be used to start a fire. They are too strong for smoking, as we have stated.

When attempting some other kind of wood, you should smell it first. You can use that if the smell is not too strong. If so, do not use it, like the kinds of wood we referred to here. The most significant concept in this situation is to try a tiny meat portion.

Top Choice for Best Wood for Smoking Turkey

Rank
Picture
Name
Rating
Shop
1#
Big Green Egg Smoking Chips
(5.0)
2#
Jack Daniels Wood BBQ Smoking Chips
(4.6)
3#
Western Premium BBQ Products Cooking Chunks
(4.5)
4#
Camerons Products Smoking Wood Chunks
(4.3)
5#
Montana Wood Chunks Maple
(4.0)


1. Big Green Egg Smoking Chips (Applewood) (Rating: 5.0/5.0)

Via: Amazon.com

Applewood is a medium-sized wood that gives the meat a fruity flavor. It provides a bunch of smoke due to its compact design that contributes to the taste of the meat. 

People enjoy the bright taste that wood gives to meat. Not only does Applewood perform well with turkey, but it can be used in other meat that you smoke. 

The chips of wood are sliced into tiny sizes. This is one of the Big Green Smoking Chips issues. They could not be used as the only source of electricity or heat because of their magnitude. 

Big Green Egg is a great product and always has top value. The chips can use any grill, either as a gas grill or as a coal grill.

PROS

  • Applewood works for diverse kinds of foods, especially turkey.
  • It is a medium wood that offers smoke, thereby enhancing the meat flavor.
  • The container of Applewood is re-sealable; hence, wood is always dry.
  • Low-priced

CONS

  • Not suitable as a single heat source

Via: Amazon.com

The packages can be sealed as a reward. They can, therefore, be used repeatedly. The pockets are less than 1 1/2 pound weight. Because wood is built out of oak barrels, they offer the whiskey a delicate taste. It provides a delightful taste when it blends with the rich taste of turkey. 

These wood pieces, however, give the flavor of the turkey an eye-catching aroma. They must, therefore, be seldom used. If not, an overpowering smoke smell can be created. It's suitable for smoking brisket if you're using a lot of chips because it's much harder to overcome your flavor.

Jack Daniels is also renowned for its alcoholic specialty beverages for his wood pieces in BBQ clubs. This oak wood powder is good to smoke a turkey, made of antique white oak bottles. To create these wood pieces, the cans used for storing whiskey are trimmed. It is not surprising that BBQ enthusiasts enjoy these trees in particular. 

Both wood chips are sliced into 1 "and generate an extreme, aromatic flavor, giving the turkey an optimal flavor. In contrast to the other trees in that category, the Jack Daniels wood BBQ smoking chips are placed in sacks produced of robust, high-quality plastic materials.

PROS

  • The wood chunks offer a whiskey-smoke that improves the turkey flavor when combined with the turkey's natural flavor.
  • The bags are produced from high-quality materials.
  • The bags are re-sealable and therefore, can also be used repeatedly.

CONS

  • This wood can overwhelm the meat flavor. Hence, avoid excessive use.

Via: Amazon.com

Oakwood is the wood of choice by many. People who enjoy grill and smoke are aware of the extraordinary flavor of oak wood. Oakwood provides your turkey a moderate to strong smoking flavor due to the wood density. The smoked taste isn't too strong. 

Post Oak BBQ cook chunks work wonderfully with all types of food, but particularly turkey. It's stronger than cherry or apple. It's always brighter than other woods, such as hickory. Cooking parts for separate meats may be used in Western Premium BBQ Post-Oak BBQ. 

Pork, lamb, beef, and sausages will offer this wood an enjoyable flavor.  This wood is also excellent for smoking turkey. The wood is slowly but hotly burning. It also cooks your meat uniformly and is excellent for searing. In addition, the dense smoke that it produces contributes to the turkey's flavor. 

The oak wood is sliced into 4" blocks, making it easy to blend into the smoke and to make the only heat source. The Western Oakwood, as with the other woods, is entirely organic, without pesticides, and without the addition of other chemicals.

PROS

  • The Western Oakwood has a dense nature, which contributes to the smoke's thickness given off by the wood.
  • Burns slowly
  • The Western Oakwood can be used as a single heat source.
  • This wood does not contain any pesticides.
  • Completely organic.
  • Cut evenly into 4" blocks
  • Fits easily in the griller and smoker
  • Can be a great addition to the charcoal grill

CONS

  • The wood chunks' sizes differ.

Via: Amazon.com

Alder is an outstanding timber to smoke fish such as seafood. It provides a smooth, bright taste. This dark wood from the Northwest of the USA is sweetened with a gentle flavor. While mainly used for fish smoking, it is excellent for pork and other animals. It explodes at a moderate temperature under mild conditions. 

Camerons wood pieces item is an alder tank with all the typical wood characteristics. The pocket is approximately 10 pounds long. The pockets may, however, measure differently owing to the non-uniform wood chop. Take the tree for 20 minutes and then cooked to appreciate the highest taste of Camerons tobacco timber pieces.

PROS

  • Alder wood is excellent for seafood and operates well for turkey.
  • Camerons wood chunks offer a sweet, subtle smell.
  • The wood is long-lasting and reasonably priced.
  • Completely natural.
  • Devoid of bark or dust.

CONS

  • Uneven wood cutting.
  • Some packages have chunks and chips combined.

5. Montana Wood Chunks Maple (Rating: 4.0/5.0)

Via: Amazon.com

The finest maple wood for turkey is Montana grilling equipment, smoking and burning wooden pieces. Even if you're a terrible cook, the pieces of wood add flavor to your food. It provides a sweet taste to the turkey. It's also burning hot. This makes sure your turkey is rapidly grilled. 

The Montana grilling equipment smoking and the barbecue wood piece are great for you if you are conscious about your health. The wood pieces are entirely organic. In wood curing, no pesticides have been used. So you do not need to worry about contamination of your meals by hazardous chemicals. The wood provides a unique smoke odor, which brings to mind the outdoors.

You even have a mildly delicious flavor for your turkey to improve your culinary knowledge. It is better to soak in your favorite option of liquid to get an even more excellent taste.

PROS

  • Completely safe 
  • Can be utilized straight on the smoker or grill
  • Cut in correct sizes with high quality
  • 100% dust-free
  • Organic wood chunks
  • Absence of pesticides
  • Adds flavor to your preferred foods
  • Can be utilized on various foods from chicken to turkey to vegetables and pork

CONS

  • If you prefer significant woodcuts, the chunks' small size might disappoint you.

Conclusion

Turkey smoking can be a pleasant experience. Many smoking wood producers exist. It is now up to you to determine which one fits your palate with each of the wood products holding a different taste. Remember the various wood quality characteristics will impact your turkey's flavor and taste. Choose the best wood and enjoy the best-smoked turkey you've ever produced.

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