Spatchcock Smoked Turkey

 

Spatchcock Smoked Turkey


Ingredients

Instructions

Combine the Sweetwater Spice Lemon Thyme Turkey Bath with water and salt, according to the directions on the bottle. Whisk well. Place the brine and turkey in a large Briner Bucket. Make sure the turkey is fully submerged. Lock the brining plate in place to keep the bird submerged. Refrigerate the turkey in the brine, one pound per hour.

Remove the turkey from the brine. Pat the bird dry with paper towels. Spatchcock the turkey. To take the backbone out, place the bird breast side down. Cut along both sides of the backbone with poultry shears, from one opening of the cavity to the other. Pull the skin away from the meat, but leave it attached. Using the Oakridge BBQ Santa Maria Seasoning, season the meat under the skin for maximum flavor absorption.

Preheat your Yoder Smokers YS640 to 250ºF. Lay the bird flat on a foil lined sheet pan and place the pan in the cooker. Smoke for one hour. Turn the cooker up to 425ºF. Continue to cook the turkey until all of the meat has reached an internal temperature of 165ºF. It is likely that the legs will cook a bit faster than the breasts. That is fine. However, do NOT cook the breasts past 165ºF. We recommend using an instant-read thermometer like the Maverick PT-75.

The thighs will separate from the rest of the body very easily, just slice through the skin. You can serve the quarters whole, separate the leg from the thigh (by cutting at the joint) or you can pull the meat from the bones and discard the bones. The breasts can either be sliced intact or removed from the breastbone, separated from wings, and sliced to serve. The wings can be served whole or you may remove the skin and pull that meat from the bones.

Until you’re ready to serve, store the meat, covered, in a pan with the juices rendered while cooking.

Yoder Smokers YS640 Pellet Grill

14 Comments

  1. Kevin
    October 14, 2017

    Why increase the temperature? Couldn’t you slow cook at 240-250??

    Reply
    1. Josh Cary
      October 14, 2017

      The skin would be rubber and essentially inedible at that low of a temperature. Poultry also takes on smoke flavor easily and has no connective tissue to break down so there is no need to go low and slow for a long period of time. Thanks!

      Reply
  2. Mark Smith
    October 28, 2017

    why not Spatchcock the turkey before putting it in the brine? Seems easier to me and less mess.

    Reply
    1. Josh Cary
      November 1, 2017

      You could certainly do that. It’s going to end up the same either way.

      Reply
  3. Colby
    October 29, 2017

    My question,I don’t have the pellets,so if I cook at lower temperatures,then add more wood to get hotter what keeps bird from tasting like total smoke?

    Reply
    1. Josh Cary
      November 1, 2017

      Yes, just adjust the temperature as needed. To keep it from tasting overly smokey you want to make sure you run a really clean fire.

      Reply
  4. Javier Rey
    November 8, 2017

    The instructions on the turkey bath brine mention straining it to catch the herbs and spices and applying them as a wet rub on the turkey skin. I noticed that was not done in the video and instead the santa maria seasoning was used. How much of a taste profile difference does it make going with santa maria versus applying the herbs and spices from the wet brine? Is doing both too much?

    Reply
    1. Tom Jackson
      November 8, 2017

      Using the wet rub will fortify the herbs and spices from the bath. I wanted some diversity in the flavor profile, and also to add some flavors not found in the bath, so I opted to add the Santa Maria, as well. You can do both, but I would go lighter on the Santa Maria.

      Reply
  5. Michael Goeller
    November 9, 2017

    What kind of pellets do you recommend for this recipe?

    Reply
    1. Josh Cary
      November 14, 2017

      We always use a 50/50 blend of pecan and cherry pellets. Thanks!

      Reply
  6. Joshua Hofheimer
    November 11, 2017

    Rough estimate — About how long will it take to smoke an 11 pound period on a YS640, using this recipe. I want to know how long before the guests arrive do I want to plan to start cooking? Thanks.

    Reply
    1. Josh Cary
      November 14, 2017

      An hour and a half or so if you spatchcock. It doesn’t take long. Thanks!

      Reply
      1. Joshua Hofheimer
        November 20, 2017

        Thanks. I must have been doing something wrong, though. It took 3 hours for an 11 lb. bird on my Yoder 640, but in the end it was delicious and moist with a crispy golden brown skin. I think maybe the time stretched because I placed the bird on the top shelf and put a pan underneath it (on the lower shelf) with vegetables and brine, to catch the drippings from the bird for my gravy. The brine was boiling hot when I put it in so as not to lower the cook chamber temperature. But it still took a long time.

        Any thoughts on whether these things affected the cook time that severely, or should I be considering something else too?

        Reply
  7. Joshua Hofheimer
    November 20, 2017

    Another question! If I am cooking the birds on my grill at home, and then taking them to a friends house for T-dinner, would you have any preference for the low and slow approach of 250/425 (in this video) versus cooking at 325 all the way through?

    Reply

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