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Faux Smoked Turkey Legs


No smoker, no wood, no fire... Liquid smoke in the brining solution results in a smoked turkey flavor. Love this recipe!

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Rate this recipe 3.7/5 (97 Votes)


  • 1 cup Morton Tender Quick salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons liquid smoke
  • 1/2 gallon water (or as needed)
  • 8 turkey legs


Servings 8
Preparation time 20mins
Adapted from


Step 1

In large bowl or pan, combine the water, quick salt, brown sugar, and liquid smoke. When salt and sugar have dissolved, pour mixture over turkey legs.

Cover and refrigerate for 24 to 72 hours. Drain brine from turkey legs and discard used brine. Gently pat turkey dry with paper towels.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place drumsticks in lightly greased roasting pan and bake uncovered for 45 minutes.

Turn oven temperature up to 500°F and roast turkey legs until they reach a deep, dark brown color. Flip drumsticks and roast other side until equally browned.

Note: DO NOT substitute regular or kosher salt for the tender quick salt (which is a mix of salt, sugar, and other curing agents), or you will end up with a too-salty, inedible mess. If you can't find the tender quick salt, look for a curing salt. If in doubt, ask your butcher.

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