For this Thanksgiving, I wanted to do something a little different with the turkey. If you are someone that does not want to de-thaw and deal with a whole turkey, then try this Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast! Smoked till tender then wrapped in foil with butter to make it even better. Paired with some Cranberry Chili BBQ Sauce for the win! 

Why just Turkey Breast?

We all have been there: you do not have enough time to dethaw the whole turkey. It is a pain in the butt to forget such a crucial piece of the puzzle when it comes to making the Thanksgiving dinner!

So what do you do in that moment? Well you could make something different like prime rib, beef tenderloin or cornish hens? Or you could just try cooking up some Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast.

We all love turkey breast because it is clean, simple and tastes delicious. With this recipe, you get all the benefits of a delicious turkey dinner without having to de-thaw, preplan or even deal with all the bones.

smoked peppercorn turkey breast

How do we cook this Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast?

The biggest key to this Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast recipe is the seasoning. I used my Mesquite Peppercorn Lager Seasoning, but you are welcome to use any peppercorn based seasoning or just salt & pepper. 

Season this guy up the night before or just 2 hours before, but make sure it goes into the fridge to set. This will help the seasoning to stick better to the food while cooking so you do not have any bald spots on the meat.

We will smoke these guys at 275F for 1-1.5 hours until they reach about 115F. Once they hit that temperature, we will pull them off and wrap them in foil with some butter. This will help speed up the process of cooking them while dosing them with tons of buttery goodness.

Once the turkey hit 165F, we will pull the Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast off and let rest for 15 minutes. Now it is time for the BBQ Sauce.

Buy all of my Seasonings & Rubs!

smoked peppercorn turkey breast

What to do for the BBQ Sauce?

This is not your normal BBQ Sauce. This Cranberry Chili BBQ Sauce is a perfect blend of Thanksgiving flavor while still having a little spicy kick. I love some good spice to pair with my turkey, so this is a great combo! If you do not want all the heat, then substitute out the garlic chili paste with more honey for a nice sweet finish!

Let’s devour this Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast now!

Once the BBQ Sauce is ready to go, we are primed to dive into this Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast. This is a fantastic Thanksgiving centerpiece whether you planned for it or not. Try it out and enjoy!

smoked peppercorn turkey breast

Smoked Chipotle Steak Chili

Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast

If you are someone that does not want to de-thaw and deal with a whole turkey, then try this Smoked Peppercorn Turkey Breast! Easy, simple and smoky delicious.
Author:Derek Wolf
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 50 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 people



  • 3 Whole Turkey Breast skinned & de-thawed
  • 2 tbsp of Mesquite Peppercorn Lager Seasoning or 1 tbsp of Sea Salt & 1 tbsp of Black Pepper
  • 1.5 tbsp of Canola Oil


  • 12 oz of Lager Beer


  • 12 tbsp of Butter

Cranberry Chili BBQ Sauce:

  • 2 tbsp of Cranberry Jelly
  • 1.5 tbsp of Ketchup
  • 1 tbsp of Garlic Chili Paste
  • 1.5 tsp of Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 1.5 tsp of Honey
  • 1 tsp of Worcestershire


  • Lather the turkey breast is canola oil then season up using the Mesquite Peppercorn Lager Seasoning or the simple salt & pepper. Place the turkey in the fridge for at least 2 hours to set but ideally overnight.
  • Preheat your smoker to 275F cooking indirectly. Add some wood chips or chunks for additional smoke flavor.
  • Add the turkey to the smoker and cook for 1-1.5 hours spritzing with beer every 20 minutes. Once the turkey hits 115F, pull it off. Grab a 2 ft piece of aluminum foil and place 2 tbsp of butter on it. Add the turkey on top of the butter with 2 more tbsp of butter on top. Completely wrap the turkey and place it back on the smoker. Repeat this for all the turkey breasts. Continue cooking the turkey for another 1 hour until it reaches 165F. When done, pull it off and let rest for 10 minutes.
  • Add a cast iron sauce skillet to the smoker or over fire to preheat for 1 minute. Add all the ingredients for the Cranberry Chili BBQ Sauce. Let simmer for 5-7 minutes until warm and thickened.
  • Pull out the turkey and slice. Serve with the BBQ Sauce and enjoy!

Derek Wolf

Derek is the driving force behind Over the Fire Cooking. He started cooking with live fire in 2016 and decided to start a social media page so his friends and family could follow the journey. Fast forward to today and Over the Fire Cooking has spread across multiple platforms with millions now following Derek’s fire cooking journey. He’s a southern fellow who enjoys everything from classic BBQ to Central and South American inspired dishes. Whatever he’s cooking up, it’s guaranteed to be so freakin’ delicious!

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