These Smoked Turkey Legs are tender, juicy, and flavorful in every bite. Better than Disney, you can make these right in the comfort of your home!

This recipe costs $15.73 to make. The recipe makes six servings for approximately $2.62 per serving.

Six smoked turkey legs on a wooden platter.

Smoked Turkey Legs Recipe

When visiting Disney, do you look forward to having their signature Smoked Turkey Legs? It’s one of my all-time favorite foods, and I’ve always wondered how they get their turkey legs to cook to perfection like they do. 

The truth is that cooking turkey can be tricky, and if you overcook it, you’ll have dry turkey with little flavor. If you’ve experienced that a time or two, don’t be ashamed because I’ve been there and done that!

With this Smoked Turkey Legs recipe, overcooking and drying out the meat is no longer a concern. The turkey comes out as a fork-tender and falls apart easily, so it will melt in your mouth with every bite you take. 

These turkey legs are even better than what you can get at Disney. The best part about them? You can make them right at home instead of going anywhere to get them!

If you make these Copycat Disney Apple Pie Caramel Apples, too, you can get your Disney fix without the cost!

What You’ll Love About These Smoked Turkey Legs

  • Bold Flavor: Smoking imparts a rich, smoky flavor that elevates the turkey. 
  • Juicy and Tender: Smoking keeps the turkey legs moist and tender. 
  • Rustic Charm: Smoked turkey legs add a fun and rustic element to your meal. 
A Smoke Turkey Leg with a bite taken out of it so you can see how tender and juicy it is.

Smoked Turkey Legs Ingredients and Estimated Cost

Per Serving Cost: $2.62

Recipe Cost: $15.73

  • 6 turkey legs – $13.44
  • 1 gallon water – $0.00
  • 1 cup kosher salt – $1.25
  • ½ cup sugar – $0.15
  • 1 Tablespoon + 2 teaspoon onion powder – $0.16
  • 1 Tablespoon + 2 teaspoon garlic powder – $0.19
  • 3 Tablespoons paprika – $0.33
  • 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon black pepper – $0.20
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin – $0.01

NOTE: The recipe prices are calculated by using grocery store websites. The recipe cost is calculated by the amounts needed for the recipe. The actual cost of the recipe will vary depending on what ingredients you already have. I updated the pricing for this recipe in September 2023.

All of the ingredients needed to make this recipe.

How To Smoke Turkey Legs

***For complete recipe instructions, see the recipe card below.

  1. First, bring ten cups of water, salt, and sugar to a boil, stirring until the salt and sugar are dissolved. 
  2. Then, add the remaining brining ingredients to the pot and remove from the heat. Cover the pot with a lid and allow to steep for thirty minutes. 
  3. Pour the mixture into a brining bucket and enough cold water to make at least 16 cups of brining solution. 
  4. Place the turkey legs in the brining solution and set it in the fridge to brine for four to six hours. 
  5. Next, remove the turkey legs from the brine, pat dry, and let them come to room temperature for thirty minutes. 
  6. Using a small bowl, stir together the rub seasonings. 
  7. Then, coat the outside of the turkey legs with the seasoning. 
  8. Preheat the smoker grill to 225 degrees F. 
  9. Set the turkey legs on the smoker grates and smoke until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. 
  10. Finally, remove from the smoker and rest for ten to fifteen minutes before serving. 

A picture collage showing how to make this recipe.

Recipe Variations

  • Buffalo Turkey Legs: Add a tablespoon of Frank’s RedHot sauce to the seasoning rub.
  • BBQ Turkey Legs: Add a couple of tablespoons of your favorite BBQ sauce to the seasoning rub.
  • Cajun Turkey Legs: Add a teaspoon of cayenne pepper and a teaspoon of cumin to the seasoning rub.
  • Lemon Pepper Turkey Legs: Add a tablespoon of lemon zest and a teaspoon of black pepper to the seasoning rub.
  • Garlic Parmesan Turkey Legs: Add a tablespoon of garlic powder and a tablespoon of Parmesan cheese to the seasoning rub.

Smoke Turkey Legs Storage Tips

Serving:

  • Serve smoked turkey legs hot or cold.
  • Serve them with your favorite sides, such as mashed potatoes, green beans, or stuffing.
  • You can keep the turkey legs out for no longer than two hours before they need to be covered and refrigerated. 

Storage:

  • Store smoked turkey legs in the refrigerator for up to three days.
  • To store them, wrap them tightly in foil or plastic wrap.

Freezing:

  • Freeze the smoked turkey legs for up to three months.
  • To freeze them, wrap them tightly in two layers of plastic wrap and then in a layer of aluminum foil.

Thawing:

  • To thaw, place them in the refrigerator overnight.

Reheating:

  • To reheat, you can bake them in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes or until heated through.
  • You can also reheat them in the microwave on high for 2-3 minutes or until heated through.
One Smoked Turkey Legs on a white plate with some BBQ sauce.

Smoked Turkey Legs Recipe FAQs

How Long to Smoke Turkey Legs?

The time it takes to smoke turkey legs will depend on a few factors, including their overall size and weight. However, you want to keep them cooking until the internal temperature reaches a minimum of 165 degrees F, so be sure to have your meat thermometer nearby. Expect it to take roughly 30 minutes per pound of turkey.

What to Serve with Your Better-Than-Disney Smoked Turkey Legs?

Want to make this an entire meal? These Smoked Turkey Legs are versatile enough to pair with nearly any side. These are a few sides we love to eat with them!
Buttery Smoked Corn on the Cob – The corn on the cob has a sweet yet smoky taste that goes great with these delicious turkey legs.
Smoked Baked Beans – You can’t go wrong with these delicious baked beans. I even dip some turkey into these baked beans for added flavor.
Grilled Corn Salad – This corn salad is light and refreshing. It’s a must-try.

Are Disney turkey legs healthy?

They are a good source of protein, but they are also full of sodium, so this is a recipe that I reserve for special occasions.

More Smoked Recipes

A close up of the finished Smoked Turkey Leg recipe on a wooden platter.
5 from 7 votes

Smoked Turkey Legs

Recipe Cost $ $15.73
Serving Cost $ $2.62
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes
6 people
These Smoked Turkey Legs are tender, juicy, and oozing with flavor in every bite. Better than Disney, you can make these right in the comfort of your home!

Equipment

  • Smoker grill
  • measuring cups and spoons
  • mixing bowl
  • large pot
  • Brining bucket
  • mixing spoon

Ingredients
 
 

TURKEY AND BRINE:

SEASONING RUB:

Instructions

PREP BRINE:

  • Add kosher salt and sugar to a large pot with 10 cups of water, bring water to a boil, and stir until dissolved.
  • Add remaining ingredients and remove from heat, cover, and allow to steep for 30 minutes.
  • Add mixture to a brining bucket or stockpot and enough cold water or ice cubes (8 cups) to make a minimum of 16 cups of brining solution.

BRINE TURKEY LEGS:

  • Place Turkey legs in a brining solution and place in the refrigerator. Allow to brine for 4 to 6 hours.
  • Remove turkey legs from the brine and pat dry.
  • Allow to dry and come to room temperature for 30 minutes on the kitchen counter.

MAKE RUB:

  • Mix all your rub seasoning ingredients in a small bowl.
  • Rub the entire outside of the turkey legs to coat them with seasoning rub fully.

PREHEAT SMOKER:

  • Bring your smoker to 225°F.
  • Place the turkey legs directly on the smoker grates and smoke until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F in the thickest part of the leg.
  • Remove from the smoker and rest for 10-15 minutes.
  • Serve immediately.

Notes

● Allow your turkey legs to sit in the brine for a minimum of four hours and up to six hours. You want the meat to soak up the flavor of the seasonings you’re using to make these turkey legs taste even better.
● After you’ve removed your turkey legs from the brine, pat them dry to get rid of any excess water and allow them to sit out for around 30 minutes before tossing them into your smoker.
● It’s best to pre-heat the smoker, giving it plenty of time to heat up before adding your turkey legs. If you heat it in advance, your turkey legs will cook even faster.

Nutrition

Serving: 1turkey leg | Calories: 430kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 120mg | Sodium: 18994mg | Potassium: 562mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 1752IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 79mg | Iron: 4mg

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6 Comments

  1. The seasonings you used + smoking the turkey legs gave them amazing flavor!! They were super tender and delicious for our dinner tonight!

  2. These turkey legs were a huge hit over here. The rub especially – yum!

  3. I was craving the Smoked Turkey Legs from Disneyland for weeks! Good thing I found this recipe, now I can’t wait to make this and enjoy my own smoked turkey legs!

  4. The entire family loved this! Will for sure try it again for those special occasions!

  5. Delicious yet simple recipe that the whole family loved. Can’t wait to make it again!

  6. OMG just like the ones at Disneyland we love! So easy too, will do again.