My new book, The Four Fundamentals of Smoking, is available for pre-order now!

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

So, you are probably asking yourself, “Do I want to cook a spatchcock turkey or do I want to cook the turkey whole as I have always done”?! Perhaps you are nervous about prepping the bird for your holiday gathering this way. Maybe you don’t even know why you are asking these questions. If this sounds like you, then you have come to the right place! First, let’s tackle which method you should use and why. I look at it like this: If you want the classic presentation at the table then go with the traditional whole bird. In addition, roasting a bird whole allows you to stuff the cavity with aromatics helping to produce a delicious gravy (check out my post for a whole thanksgiving turkey here). The benefit of doing a spatchcock turkey is creating an even cooking surface, by flattening out the bird, so the breast and thighs roast at the same time. The presentation will be different for your family and friends, but the ease of cooking the bird bird will offset that. So, if this intro helped sway you towards spatchcocking a turkey let’s dive into the details. Now sit back, grab a glass of your favorite beaujolais nouveau, and enjoy Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey.

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

For this cook I went with a wet brine for the turkey using Dizzy Pig BBQ’s Mad Max Brine (make sure to use the code BBQBUDDHA for 15% off any order). I have found wet brining a turkey provides the best combination of moisture and flavor. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Start by pouring the brine into a pot, adding water, and bringing it to a low boil. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Pour the hot brine mixture into cold water and place in the fridge, allowing it to cool while spatchcocking the turkey. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Now, let’s walk through how to spatchcock a turkey. Start with a whole turkey that has not been pre-brined. Make sure to read the ingredients list on the turkey you purchased as a lot of store bought turkeys will package the turkey in a saline solution to preserve it. If you have that kind of turkey DO NOT brine as it will be overly salty. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Start by flipping the bird over so the breast side is down. Find the backbone and using kitchen shears (e.g. OXO Poultry Shears) cut along each side of the backbone. Until you are able to remove the entire thing. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Once the backbone has been removed (it should be saved for stock and gravy prep) flip the bird over so the breast is facing you and press down hard to break the breast plate. This is a critical step as it is what flattens the bird and creates an even cooking surface. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

When done, add the spatchcocked turkey to a brining bucket and pour the cold brining solution in. Place in to your refrigerator overnight.  

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey – The Next Day

The next day, carefully remove the bird from the brining bucket, rinse, and pat dry with paper towels. Then apply your favorite BBQ rub to the outside of the turkey. For this cook I used Dizzy Pig’s Tsunami Spin

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Set up your Big Green Egg for indirect cooking using the ConvEGGtor and preheat to 275°F. For this cook I used 2 handfuls of Pecan Wood Chips for a “kiss” of smokey flavor. Once preheated and the smoke is running clean, place the bird inside breast side up, ensuring the turkey is laying as flat as possible. For the first hour let the turkey roast without checking it.  Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

After the first hour bump the temperature up to 350°F. Next, take 1 stick of melted butter mixed with 1 tsp of chopped fresh thyme and glaze the outside of the bird. This will help with the browning. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Depending on the size, the bird will be done between 2:15 – 2:30 hours total. But to ensure your bird is ready use a digital thermometer (like the Thermapop shown here) and probe the thigh and breast. You are looking for two things: first, if the juice runs clear the bird is done and second, if the thigh measures 180°F and breast measures 165°F you are done. Now, if you want a secret, you can pull the bird at 155°F and rest it 30 minutes as the carryover cooking will bring it up to a safe temp. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Pull the turkey, place it on a cutting board, and rest up to 30 minutes before slicing and serving. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Everyone has their own way to carve a turkey.   What I do is separate the legs and wings first then remove each breast. I slice the breast in to equal pieces and place all of that on a serving platter. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

If you have made it this far congrats! You are the proud owner of a delicious spatchcock turkey. 

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey

 
Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This recipe for Big Green Egg Spatchcock Turkey will walk you through start to finish how to prep and cook a bird this way for your next holiday gathering.
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Serves: 10
Ingredients
  • 14-pound fresh whole turkey (not brined)
  • 1 container of Dizzy Pig BBQ Mad Max Brine
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • BBQ seasoning to taste
Instructions
  1. For this cook I went with a wet brine for the turkey using Dizzy Pig BBQ's Mad Max Brine (make sure to use the code BBQBUDDHA for 15% off any order). I have found wet brining a turkey provides the best combination of moisture and flavor.
  2. Start by pouring the brine in to a pot, adding water, and bringing it to a low boil.
  3. Pour the hot brine mixture in to cold water and place in the fridge allowing it to cool while spatchcocking the turkey.
  4. Now, let's walk through how to spatchcock a turkey. Start with a whole turkey that has not been pre-brined. Make sure to read the ingredients list on the turkey you purchased as a lot of store bought turkeys will package the turkey in a saline solution to preserve it. If you have that kind of turkey DO NOT brine as it will be overly salty.
  5. Start by flipping the bird over so thew breast side is down. Find the backbone and using kitchen shears (e.g. OXO Poultry Shears) cut along each side of the backbone. Until you are able to remove the entire thing.
  6. Once the backbone has been removed (it should be saved for stock and gravy prep) flip the bird over so the breast is facing you and press down hard to break the breast plate. This is a critical step as it is what flattens the bird and creates an even cooking surface.
  7. When done, add the spatchcocked turkey to a brining bucket and pour the cold brining solution in. Place in to your refrigerator overnight.
  8. The next day, carefully remove the bird from the brining bucket, rinse, and pat dry with paper towels. Then apply your favorite BBQ rub to the outside of the turkey. For this cook I used Dizzy Pig's Tsunami Spin.
  9. Set up your Big Green Egg for indirect cooking using the ConvEGGtor and preheat to 275°F. For this cook I used 2 handfuls of Pecan Wood Chips for a "kiss" of smokey flavor. Once preheated and the smoke is running clean, place the bird inside breast side up, ensuring the turkey is laying as flat as possible. For the first hour let the turkey roast without checking it.
  10. After the first hour bump the temperature up to 350°F. Next, take 1 stick of butter (melted) mixed with 1 tsp of chopped fresh thyme and glaze the outside of the bird. This will help with the browning.
  11. Depending on the size, the bird will be done between 2:15 - 2:30 hours total. But to ensure your bird is ready use a digital thermometer (like the Thermapop shown here) and probe the thigh and breast. You are looking for two things: first, if the juice runs clear the bird is done and second, if the thigh measures 180°F and breast measures 165°F you are done. Now, if you want a secret, you can pull the bird at 155°F and rest it 30 minutes as the carryover cooking will bring it up to a safe temp.
  12. Pull the turkey, place it on a cutting board, and rest up to 30 minutes before slicing and serving.
  13. Everyone has their own way to carve a turkey but what I do is separate the legs and wings first then remove each breast. I slice the breast in to equal pieces and place all of that on a serving platter.

 

 

Comments & Questions

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Rate this recipe:  

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.