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smoked turkey on white plate with white background

This beauty is a little untraditional, not because it’s smoked, but because it’s stuffed with bacon and bathed in bourbon.

Although this turkey is smoked, it’s actually cooked hot and fast over indirect heat. For the Big Green Egg, you’re able to cook indirectly using the plate setter.

It’s a ceramic disk that sits over the coals. This allows the harshest heat to reflect back down, instead of scorching your meat.

After you stuff the bird with aromatics of jalapenos, onions, apple, garlic and bacon, you’ll lay it on the grill grate over a pan of the same goodies and some apple cider.

As the bird smokes, these flavors will be infused inside and out.

partially smoked turkey on Big Green Egg

Start this bird at a high temp (vents pretty wide open) with the breasts down. After 30 minutes, give her a flip.

partially smoked turkey on Big Green Egg

Reduce the heat of the Big Green Egg by closing down the vents a bit. Continue cooking until she reaches an internal temperature of 165 F degrees.

Be sure to check the temperature in different parts of the bird. The thighs usually take the longest to cook.

smoked turkey on white plate with white background

The color is pretty magical. Don’t you agree?

4.50 from 300 votes

Bacon Bourbon Smoked Turkey on Big Green Egg

Go rogue for Thanksgiving, Christmas or Easter by making a Bacon Bourbon Smoked Turkey. Stuff it with bacon, bathe it in bourbon and smoke it on the Big Green Egg.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 12


  • 1 cup whiskey smoke chips
  • 11 lb turkey
  • 1/4 cup poultry rub
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 tbsp bourbon
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2 jalapenos, quartered
  • 5 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 apple, cubed
  • 6 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp bourbon
  • 2 cups apple cider



  • Soak the whiskey smoke chips in water.
  • Rinse the turkey and pat it dry. Be sure to remove the neck and giblets. Place it in a large pan.
  • In a bowl, combine the rub, butter and 2 tablespoons bourbon. Rub it all over the turkey – inside, outside and under the breast skin.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the onion, jalapenos, garlic, apple, bacon, olive oil, salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon bourbon. Stuff half of the mixture into the cavity of the bird. Place the other half in a shallow aluminum pan. Add the apple cider to the pan.
  • Add the platesetter into the Big Green Egg, feet up. Close the lid, and adjust the vents to get the temperature to 450 F degrees.


  • Place the pan of vegetables and cider on the platesetter. Add the grill rack. Add the turkey, breast side down. Close the lid. Smoke for 30 minutes at 450 F degrees.
  • Open the lid and drop soaked smoke chips down the sides of the egg through the gaps in the platesetter. Flip the turkey over. Close the lid, and reduce the temperature to 350-400 F degrees. Continue cooking until the internal temperature of the turkey reaches 165 F degrees.
  • Remove the turkey to a cutting board. Tent with foil and let rest 30-60 minutes before carving.


Calories: 581kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 65gFat: 29gSaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 229mgSodium: 633mgPotassium: 773mgSugar: 6gVitamin A: 355IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 57mgIron: 3.2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Thanksgiving
Did you try this recipe?Be sure to rate it, leave a comment and save it so you can make it again. Show off your awesome results on social by tagging @girlscangrill

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christie vanover standing against wood wall.

Hey BBQ Family

Hi. I’m Christie, the head cook and award-winning competitive pitmaster for Team Girls Can Grill. I have won multiple grand championships and have dozens of top ten category finishes. People know me as the girl who is forever hovering over a grill, smoker or campfire with tongs in one hand and a glass of wine in the other.

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Recipe Rating


  1. If I wanted to try this recipe on my Weber Smokefire pellet grill would I just follow the recipe steps as is or would I have to modify them?

    1. I haven’t tried it on a pellet, but yes. You should get the same results. For the second stage, reduce the smoker to 350, if you want more smoke.

  2. Notes so far:

    Love the stuffing, but it falls out when starting the bird breast-down, even with legs tied. Then, more falls out when flipping back upright. Beyond lacing the opening closed, not sure the upside down start is worth it.

    Put the foil drip pan on when the bird goes on, not before, otherwise it’s super hot when adding the rest of the stuffing and apple juice.

    Should remove the bird AND grate to add wood chips, otherwise they get stuck in the grate and it’s hard to aim them into the narrow opening.

    Also, will do something different next time for compound butter under the skin. The volume of seasoning in the butter left a green paste beneath the skin that was fine flavor-wise, but kind of gross looking. The compound butter w/seasoning on the outside was great.

    Results- great tasting bird! Learned a few things. Will use this for Thanksgiving this year!