Despite efforts to produce suitable smoking cessation aids, addiction to nicotine continues to carry a substantive risk of recidivism. An attractive alternative to current therapies is the pharmacokinetic strategy of antinicotine vaccination. A major hurdle in the development of the strategy has been to elicit a sufficiently high antibody concentration to curb nicotine distribution to the brain. Herein, we detail investigations into a new hapten design, which was able to elicit an antibody response of significantly higher specificity for nicotine. We also explore the use of a mutant flagellin carrier protein with adjuvanting properties. These studies underlie the feasibility of improvement in antinicotine vaccine formulations to move toward clinical efficacy.