Smoked Duck

Smoked Duck

This smoked duck is divine. First, the duck is spatchcocked or butterflied, which involves removing the backbone and flattening the poultry, so it cooks evenly. Then it is seasoned with salt and brushed with a balsamic glaze while cooking. In addition to adding an extra layer of flavor, the glaze gives the exterior a glossy finish.
Servings 4
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 25 minutes


  • Z Grills Wood Pellet Grill
  • Z Grills Cherry Wood Pellets
  • Poultry Shears
  • Probe Thermometer
  • Pastry brush


  • 1 (5-pound) whole duck
  • 2 teaspoons fine sea salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder


  • Remove the excess skin near the neck of the duck with poultry shears.
  • Place the duck breast-side down and cut along the right side of the backbone with the kitchen shears.
  • Repeat on the left side, then remove the backbone entirely. Either discard it or reserve it to use in stock or broth.
  • Flip the duck over so it is breast-side up. Firmly press on the breastbone until you hear a crack and the bird is flat.
  • Season the duck with half the salt. Also, stir the honey or maple syrup, remaining salt, cayenne pepper, balsamic vinegar, paprika, and garlic powder together in a bowl to make the glaze.
  • Preheat your Z Grills (preferably with branded apple or cherry wood pellets) or other wood pellet grill to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Place the duck onto the grates breast-side up, close the lid, and smoke for 3 hours or until the breast and thigh reach an internal temperature of 170 degrees Fahrenheit. Brush the duck with the glaze every hour.
  • Remove the smoked duck from the pellet grill and rest for 10-15 minutes.
  • Slice and serve.


You can also use a knife to butterfly the duck.
Calories: 290kcal
Cost: 25
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Smoked

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Z Grills

Z Grills is a grill manufacturer with over 30 years of experience within the industry. With over 650,000 pellet grills sold and 85 million cooks made, trust us.

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  1. You left the balsamic vinegar out of step 5.

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