Smoked Spatchcock Turkey -Orange Cranberry Glaze

What is Spatchcock Turkey?  “Spatchcock: to cut poultry along the spine and spread the halves apart, for more even cooking when grilled. “

Very easy to do and will be some of the best turkey you’ll ever have.

Prep Time: 30 minutes plus overnight brine
Cook Time: 5 hours @ 225 degrees (110c)
Grill: Louisiana Wood Pellet Grill
Pellets: Country Bob’s Wood Pellets

Ingredients: Turkey

  • 1 turkey (we did a 15 pounder)
  • Country Bob’s Seasoning Salt
  • Ingredients: Brine
  • 3 cups Cran- Apple juice
  • 2 cups dark brown sugar
  • 2 cups kosher salt
  • 1 cup Country Bob’s Marinade
  • ¼ cup Country Bob’s Apple Chipotle Sauce
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup garlic powder
  • ¼ cup red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup onion powder
  • ¼ cup dried crushed garlic
  • ¼ cup liquid Smoke
  • 4 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1 Tbsp. of ‘cracked’ black peppercorns


brine boilBring your Brine to a Low Boil

Directions: Brine

Take an ice chest your bird will fit in and line the bottom of it with ice packs. For easy clean up put a large trash bag over ice packs in your ice chest.

Place your turkey in the trash bag in the ice chest. Go put your brine together.

Add all your brine seasonings with about a quart of water into a saucepan, heat to a low boil. You are melting the sugar and salt while the heat releases the oils from the rest of your spices. When smooth, pour brine solution into the trash bag with turkey. Add cold water to make about 1 ½ gallons of brine to completely cover your bird. I tied the bag shut and put the lid on the ice chest overnight.


After the brine bath rinse your bird off and place it breast side down on your cutting board. Using a knife or kitchen shears cut along the sides of the backbone and remove it. (I used tin snips from my shop.)

bird in a bag brineBird in a Bag

Now, turn it breast side up folding out the sides. Using both of your hands press down on the bird and flatten it out. You will hear some of the bones cracking and that’s what you want. When doing this with a chicken you use a meat mallet to pound it out until it is flat. A turkey being a bit bigger you need a bigger mallet. Give it a few smacks to flatten out the breast.

So, we brined our bird overnight and trimmed it and beat it with a mallet. Let’s head for the grill. With the grill at 400 degrees (200c) I seared our Big Bird. After a nice sear turn the grill down to 225 degrees (110c) and let it smoke for 5 hours until an internal temp of 185 degrees (85c) for a delicious and tender juicy turkey kissed with pecan smoke.

Spatchcock Turkey Glaze

Orange Cranberry Glaze

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: Glaze 5 minutes. Turkey 5 hours on smoke

Ingredients: Orange Cranberry Glaze

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 can cranberry sauce
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon white pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons red pepper flakes, optional


Directions: Orange Cranberry Glaze

In medium sauce pot melt butter.

On low heat melt butter, add cranberry sauce. Simmer until melted.

Add orange juice. Stir until blended. Heat to near boil.

Spatchcock Turkey Stuffing

Cranberry Stuffing in Pecan Smoke

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 350 for 45 minutes

Ingredients: Holiday Cranberry Stuffing

  • 1 bag/box seasoned stuffing cubes
  • 2 sticks of butter
  • 2 cups celery, chopped
  • 1 large sweet onion, chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons fresh minced garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Country Bob’s Seasoning Salt
  • 2 cups dried cranberries
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken stock

Directions: Holiday Cranberry Stuffing

Sauté vegetables in melted butter. Add seasonings, cranberries and bread cubes. Mix lightly.

Pour into greased Dutch oven.


Note: how I put a slit in the skin and tucked the legs

Cooking Directions: Louisiana Wood Pellet Grill

To prepare the grill for cooking, check your pellet supply – top off or change flavors as needed. Scrape grill grates off. Set the temperature to 450 degrees and press the “Start” button. Give the grill about 15 minutes to reach temperature and the grates to burn clean.

Note: You can set the start temperature anywhere you want. I do 450 (230c) for a quick clean burn.

I put my turkey on my grill breast side down and gave it a nice sear. Then, turned it over (breast side up) and set our grill temp to 225 degrees (110c). I put my meat probe in now. The Louisiana Grills have a nice built in one where you can set your temp and the meat reaches your set temperature. It backs down to its lowest smoke temp to hold it till your ready to pull your turkey.

Spatchcock Turkey Sear
Add your probe into the thickest part of the thigh


Spatchcock Turkey probe

This will be a slow smoke for about 5 hours. This will vary some due to the size of your bird so you are looking for an internal temp of 185 degrees (85c). Giving the thanksgiving turkey a coat of the glaze every half hour or so.

Add the stuffing to the grill around the last hour of your smoke, when you pull the turkey turn the grill up to 350 degrees (180c) to finish heating as you’re carving your poultry.

Note: I get a lot of questions about the kind of pellets you can use with a recipe. Keep in mind that a recipe is just an outline. Some you need to follow closely like when you are making bread, but most you can do anything you can dream, our favorite way to cook. Feel free to mix and match the pellets until you find a combination you really like. Also you are only smoking at temps less than 250 degrees (122c), anything higher is cooking and there will not be much if any smoke so it does not matter what kind of pellet you are using.

Directions: Gas Grill

Prep Time: 30 minutes plus overnight brine
Cook Time: 5 hours @ 225 degrees (110c)
Grill: Any
Preparing Grill:  Low Indirect Heat

Preheat your grill to low heat 225 degrees (110c) and turn off one side so you will be cooking with indirect heat. Follow the cooking directions above.

Spatchcock Turkey platedLet’s Eat!

About our Recipes

We do our recipes on our patio where we have a lineup of grills, including Louisiana, Royall, Traeger pellet grills, Char Griller side box smoker, Saber, Charmglow, Char-Broil, The Big Easy, Lodge Sportsman’s, Brinkman and Weber. I call it our “Wall of Grill”. Our grilling styles are healthy and low fat and will fit pelletheads, gas, natural wood and even charcoal purists. Almost any of our recipes can be done on any kind of good BBQ.

The important thing to keep in mind is TIME & TEMPERATURE. You can even do some of them in the oven or crock pot, but, then you lose all the flavors you get from cooking outdoors. But sometimes it does rain.

Spatchcock Turkey

Remember that a recipe is simply an outline; it is not written in stone. Don’t be afraid to make changes to suit your taste.

Great for Thanksgiving or Christmas! *Recipe courtesy of Ken & Patty with Date Night Doins

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