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Traeger Spatchcock Turkey

Nothing says Thanksgiving like a perfectly smoked spatchcock turkey. If you’re looking for an easy, delicious way to cook your holiday bird this year, look no further than the Traeger spatchcock turkey recipe.

This simple yet flavorful recipe uses a Traeger smoker and simple ingredients to infuse your turkey with the smoky taste of a classic BBQ meal. In just a few hours you can have a beautiful, succulent turkey that is sure to impress your guests.

Traeger spatchcock turkey

How to smoke a spatchcocked turkey on Traeger smoker

To begin, prepare the turkey: remove the neck and giblets from the cavity. Next, spatchcock the turkey by using kitchen shears to cut along either side of the backbone and remove it completely. This should open up the cavity for more even cooking.

In a large container place turkey in a brine solution made up of water, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. Refrigerate overnight.

Preheat Traeger smoker to 250°F.

Take the turkey out of the brine solution and dry with paper towels. Generously season turkey on all sides with your favorite poultry rub.

Place the turkey, skin-side up, on a roasting pan and transfer to the preheated smoker. Smoke for approximately 3-4 hours or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 165°F.

How to spatchcock a turkey

Spatchcocking is a cooking technique that involves butterflying the meat, splitting it open and flattening it out. The result is a turkey that cooks quickly, evenly, and is full of flavor.

To spatchcock a turkey, start by placing it breast-side down on a cutting board. Use sharp kitchen shears to cut along either side of the backbone and remove it. Turn the turkey over and press firmly on the breastbone to flatten out the bird. Lastly, tuck the wings underneath the body.

What rubs to use

When it comes to choosing the right rub for smoking turkey, there are many options available. A common rub for smoking turkey contains oregano, garlic powder, smoked paprika, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. These ingredients will provide a balance of savory and sweet while adding complexity to the flavor of the turkey.

Another option is a Cajun-style rub that includes ingredients like cayenne pepper, garlic powder, oregano, and thyme. This rub will add a bit of heat and a more intense flavor.

A third option is an Indian-style rub with turmeric, cumin, cinnamon, black pepper, and coriander. This rub will give the turkey a warm, earthy flavor that pairs well with other Indian spices.

how long to smoke a spatchcock turkey

How long will it take to smoke

Smoking a turkey on a Traeger Pellet Grill is a great way to bring out the rich smoky flavor of your bird. But how long does it take? It depends on the size of your turkey and the temperature you’re using. Generally, a 12-pound turkey will take about 4 to 5 hours to cook at 250°F.

You can use a meat thermometer to make sure that it’s cooked through. Once it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F, remove it from the grill and let it rest before carving.

Carving the turkey

Begin by breaking the wings away from the body of the turkey by cutting along each side of the backbone. Once the wings are removed, use your knife to cut along the breastbone then separate the two halves.

Next, use your knife to pull back the skin and meat from the breastbone. You can now remove each half of the breast with your knife. Slice each half into 1/2 inch thick slices and serve with your favorite sides.

What side dish to serve

The smoky flavor of the turkey pairs perfectly with an array of side dishes, making it a versatile and flavorful option for any occasion. If you’re looking for ideas on what to serve with your smoked spatchcock turkey, consider the following options.

For an easy, classic choice, serve mashed potatoes or roasted potatoes. Both are sure to please and provide a nice contrast to the smoky flavor.

If you’re looking for something more unique, try a spiced fruit compote or a wild rice pilaf. If you’re looking for something light and fresh, roasted vegetables are always a great option. Try roasting broccoli, brussels sprouts, carrots, or any other vegetables you have on hand.

For more of a hearty side dish, consider serving roasted squash or sweet potatoes. Finally, don’t forget to include a salad – either a simple green salad or something more complex like a quinoa tabouli will pair nicely with the smoky turkey.

spatchcock turkey on pellet grill

What to do with leftovers

If you have leftover smoked turkey, you can make a meal out of it without having to cook from scratch. Here are some great ideas for what to do with your leftover smoked turkey.

Start by shredding the turkey and using it as the base for tacos or enchiladas. If you’re looking for something a little more filling, try making a smoked turkey pot pie or a hearty smoked turkey soup.

You can also use the turkey to top a salad for a protein-packed, flavorful meal. If you’re looking for something quick and easy, you can also use the smoked turkey to make sandwiches or wraps.

Traeger Spatchcock Turkey

Try this delicious Traeger spatchcock turkey recipe for your next family dinner. Simple to make and full of flavor, it's sure to be a hit at your table.

Course Main Course
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours


  • 10-12 lbs Turkey
  • 1/2 cup Your Favorite BBQ Rub


  • 2 gallons Water
  • 1 cup Salt
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Ground Black Pepper


  1. Prepare the brine by combing water, salt, brown sugar, and ground black pepper in a large bowl. Stir until ingredients are dissolved.

  2. Spatchcock the turkey and place in the brine solution. Refrigerate overnight.

  3. Preheat the smoker to 250°F.

  4. Remove the turkey from the brine and dry with paper towels. Season the turkey with your favorite BBQ rub. Make sure the cover all sides of the turkey.

  5. Place the turkey in the smoker and smoke for 3-4 hours or until internal temperature reaches 165°F.

  6. Remove the turkey from the smoker and let it rest for 15 minutes before carving.

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