These Smoked Turkey Legs marinate in and get injected with an easy homemade marinade that packs this juicy, tender meat full of tasty flavor! Prep these delicious turkey legs in just 15 minutes!
These Smoked Turkey Legs will blow your taste buds away with their combination of sweet heat and smoky taste! With ingredients like franks red hot sauce, chili powder, brown sugar, and red pepper jelly, you know these turkey legs will pack a punch of flavor that everyone will love!
Serve them up back yard BBQ style with yummy sides like Hot German Potato Salad and Roasted Vegetables! Or dress them up for a holiday by enjoying Best Mashed Potatoes, Cheddar Drop Biscuits, and vegetables with them!
But you could also just keep it super low-key and simply hang out snacking on one like you would at Disney World! Either way, just throw the marinade together the night before for an easy make-ahead prep, and then all you have to do is inject the legs and put them on the smoker the next day!
To get started with this delicious and easy recipe you’ll need 4 turkey legs! These can likely be found right at your local grocery store or meat market.
Don’t be afraid to speak up and kindly ask your grocer if you don’t see them!
Then you’ll pack those turkey legs with flavor using beef stock, franks red-hot sauce, unsalted butter, thyme, rosemary, peppercorns, salt, chili powder, garlic cloves, brown sugar, red pepper jelly, and bourbon.
Not only do the turkey legs marinate to absorb as much flavor as possible but they also get injected with a combination of homemade marinade and beef broth! Meat injectors are fairly inexpensive but so worth having when you really want juicy, flavorful meats!
How To Make Smoked Turkey Legs
- Add 1/2 cup of beef stock and all of the ingredients, except the turkey legs, into a sauce pan over medium heat. Stirring as the butter melts, once the mixture starts to boil remove it from heat and let it cool.
- Pour the mixture into a deep casserole dish and place turkey legs into it. Cover and marinate.
- Remove turkey legs from the casserole dish and set them aside along with 1/2 cup of the marinade. Bring the rest of the marinade to a boil in a saucepan and then place it into a bowl for basting.
- Preheat the smoker at 250 degrees F for 15 minutes with the grill cover closed.
- Fill auger 1/2 full with cherry wood pellets.
- Combine the set aside 1/2 cup of marinade with 1/2 cup of beef stock. Using a meat injector inject the marinade into the meatiest part of the turkey legs.
- Cook the turkey legs directly on the grill grates. Basting and brushing with the boiled marinade every 30 minutes.
- Remove the grilled turkey legs once the thickest part of the legs reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F on a meat thermometer. Salt and pepper to taste, enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Roast The Turkey Legs Instead?
Yes, you can. Simply preheat your oven to 450 degrees F and place a roasting rack in your roasting pan and spray with nonstick spray. Add the prepared turkey legs to the rack and cook uncovered for 20 minutes. Cover with aluminum foil and roast for an additional 25 to 30 minutes or until the turkey legs reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
How To Store
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Enjoy them within four days!
How Can I Reheat These Turkey Legs?
Place them in a casserole dish with a tablespoon or two of water and cover the dish with tinfoil. Reheat them slowly in the oven at 250 degrees F.
Placing water in the dish and heating them slowly will help the reheated turkey legs to not dry out.
Can I Make This Recipe Without Alcohol?
Yes, you can! To do so just swap out the bourbon for chicken stock.
What Other Types Of Pellets Can I Use In My Smoker?
I chose to use cherry wood pellets for this recipe but you could also use apple or even maple. For a stronger flavor try using hickory!
Are Wood Pellets and Wood Chips The Same Thing?
They’re actually not. Wood pellets tend to burn hotter and last longer. Whereas wood chips don’t seem to smoke the meats evenly and burn up a lot faster than the pellets.
These Smoked Turkey Legs remind me not to leave turkey for just Thanksgiving and other holidays! Enjoy it year-round by trying another delicious turkey recipe!
- Herb Roasted Turkey Breast – Flavorful meat that’s coated with an herb-infused butter that takes only 5 minutes to prep!
- Turkey Florentine Pasta Bake – Lean ground turkey, spinach, pasta and marinara combine for a simple baked pasta dish thats ready in just 35 minutes!
- Slow Cooker Turkey Breast – An easy way to make a juicy turkey with minimal prep that loaded with garlic, onion, and herbs!
- Healthy and Easy Turkey Chili – Grab a bowl of this delicious and lean turkey chili that’s made with a secret ingredient!
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Smoked Turkey Legs
- 1 cup beef stock divided into ½ cups
- 1 cup Frank's RedHot sauce
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 6 sprigs thyme
- 6 sprigs rosemary
- 1 tablespoon peppercorns
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon chili powder
- 6 garlic cloves
- 1 cup light brown sugar packed
- ¼ cup red pepper jelly
- ½ cup whiskey use your favorite whiskey or bourbon, or replace with beef stock
- 4 turkey legs
- Combine ½ cup beef stock, and all ingredients but the turkey legs into a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir well as the butter melts. Once the mixture starts to boil, remove it from heat. Let cool for 10 minutes.
- Then, pour into a deep casserole dish and place turkey legs inside. Cover and allow to marinate overnight, or at least 5 hours.
- Remove turkey legs from the casserole dish and set them aside. Pour the marinade into a large mixing bowl with a pour spout. Set aside ½ cup, and pour remaining marinade into a saucepan.
- Bring to a boil for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and place into a bowl for basting.
- Set smoker to 250°F and preheat for 15 minutes with the lid closed. Fill auger ½ full with cherry wood pellets.
- In a small mixing bowl combine the ½ cup of marinade set aside in step 2 with ½ cup beef stock.
- Use a meat injector to inject marinade into the meatiest parts of the turkey legs.
- Place turkey legs directly onto the grill grates. Cook for 3 hours. Baste or brush with the boiled marinade every 30 minutes.
- Remove from heat once the internal temp has reached 165°F.
- How To Store: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Enjoy them within four days!
- How Can I Reheat These Turkey Legs? Place them in a casserole dish with a tablespoon or two of water and cover the dish with tinfoil. Reheat them slowly in the oven at 250 degrees F. Placing water in the dish and heating them slowly will help the reheated turkey legs to not dry out.
- Can I Make This Recipe Without Alcohol? Yes, you can! To do so just swap out the bourbon for chicken stock.
- What Other Types Of Pellets Can I Use In My Smoker? I chose to use cherry wood pellets for this recipe but you could also use apple or even maple. For a stronger flavor try using hickory!
- Are Wood Pellets and Wood Chips The Same Thing? They’re actually not. Wood pellets tend to burn hotter and last longer. Whereas wood chips don’t seem to smoke the meats evenly and burn up a lot faster than the pellets.