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Test Kitchen Approved

Spatchcock Turkey

Recipe By Savory Spice Test Kitchen


8 to 10 servings

Recipe By Savory Spice Test Kitchen

Why spatchcock a turkey? Taking out the backbone and flattening the bird makes for a quicker and more even cooking experience.

This spatchcock turkey recipe features a few of our favorite BBQ spice blends and has options for smoked turkey or grilled turkey. It's perfect for a non-traditional Thanksgiving table or a summer backyard barbecue!

Serving Suggestions

Recipe Notes

*For juicier turkey, brine the turkey for 1 hour per pound before smoking it; use our Brining Mix and follow the easy brining instructions. Savory’s ‘Cue Glue helps BBQ seasoning stick better to smoked and grilled proteins and seal in flavor. When preparing and cooking a turkey, be sure to follow proper food safety and handling guidelines.


1 (12 to 15 lb.) turkey, fresh or thawed if frozen

12 to 15 tsp. seasoning of choice (about 1 tsp. per pound meat)

Staff favorites for seasoning spatchcocked turkey include:

Savory Spice ingredients in this recipe

  • Brining Spice Ready Mix

    Our easy-to-use brining mix includes just the right amount of salt, sugar, and seasoning to brine any protein you want to remain tender and juicy a...

    View full details
  • 'Cue Glue

    'Cue Glue is a meat binder that's exclusive to Savory Spice. This "BBQ glue" helps stick your spices & seasonings to your grilled meats. As a b...

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  • Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning

    Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning may seem like an obvious, simple one to always have on hand – but this salt and pepper mix is a Savory Spice ...

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  • Santa Maria Sea Salted BBQ Rub

    Santa Maria barbeque is a mainstay in California culinary tradition and dates back to the mid-1900s. We want to help keep it alive and share its si...

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  • Mt. Evans Butcher's Rub

    Mt. Evans is the tallest mountain in Colorado that you can drive to the top of. At its peak, you can view the spectacular rugged terrain of the Roc...

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  • Lake Barkley Fried Chicken Seasoning

    Lake Barkley brings back childhood memories of vacationing in the south, where fried foods were abundant. Though it was created as a seasoning for ...

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  • Woody Creek BBQ Seasoning

    This salt-free BBQ seasoning allows you to enjoy the sweet and smoky flavor of barbecue without the salt. Because it is salt-free, you can apply th...

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  • TSM BBQ Chicken Rub

    Using this spicy and flavorful rub, Team Sweet Mama placed third out of 64 teams in the chicken category at the Frisco, Colorado BBQ competition. T...

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Step 1: Brine turkey (optional)

If brining, prepare brine using Brining Mix instructions and brine turkey breast for 1 hour per pound in the refrigerator.

Step 2: Spatchcock and season turkey

Pat turkey dry. Use kitchen shears to cut turkey lengthwise along either side of backbone and remove the backbone. Open turkey and place it breast side up on a cutting board. Use the palms of your hands to push down on the breast bone, breaking it so the turkey will lie flat. Brush turkey all over with 'Cue Glue if using. Sprinkle all sides with salt & pepper then choice of seasoning.

Step 3: Smoke turkey

Prepare smoker with wood of choice and preheat to 225 to 250 degrees. Place turkey in the smoker, breast side up, and smoke until the internal temperature of the thickest part of the breast and thigh reaches 165 degrees; about 3 to 4 hours depending on the size of the turkey. To finish on the grill if desired, set the smoked turkey over direct heat (300 to 350 degrees) for 5 to 7 min. on both sides. Let turkey rest for 30 min. before slicing.

Optional: Grill turkey

Follow the same method but keep the heat to one side of the grill and set the turkey, breast side up, on the opposite side so it cooks over indirect heat. If you want to add smoke flavor to the turkey, use a few soaked wood chunks on the charcoal or a smoker box with soaked wood chips on a gas grill. Set the smoking element over the direct heat side of the grill. Turn turkey every 45 min. or so for even browning.