I got a lot of direct messages on Instagram on how I grilled my turkey this past Thanksgiving, so I thought I would do a quick post here today to link it to my Instagram pic. And well, my eats were boring yesterday – I clocked in at 8:50 a.m. and didn’t clock out until 7:00 p.m. My only breaks were basically going to the bathroom!
But let’s talk turkey!
That was a 12 1/2 pound turkey. My Mom won it somewhere, I can’t remember where, and it didn’t fit in her freezer then, so she brought it to us. It’s probably been in my downstairs freezer for six months? First things first, you need to defrost that bird. I typically use 5 days prior to cooking to defrost the turkey in my refrigerator. Even though your turkey may be rock solid frozen, never defrost it in your sink.
The reason I use five days is because I know it will be defrosted all the way through. I can’t tell you how many Thanksgivings I “thought” my turkey was defrosted, only to realize I can’t get the neck or giblets out because the inside of the bird is still frozen.
Once I take the turkey out of the package, I set it on my cutting board for about 30 minutes while I light my grill. I use regular Weber grill. Next, take a paper towel and remove any excess moisture off the bird. I used two tablespoons of softened butter with one teaspoon of creole seaoning, and spread that all over the skin. I filled the cavity with two sliced lemons and rosemary.
Now here is where I may differ from other grillers. I put my coals on both sides of the grill, leaving the middle empty. I place the bird in the middle, and cook the turkey for 25 minutes at 450 degrees. You may be thinking “Biz, that’s too hot!” But I like how it sears the skin right away. After 25 minutes, the coals start to cool and the bird continues to cook at around the 300-325 mark, until the turkey hits 170 degrees.
All websites will tell you to cook your turkey to 180, which I agree with, but pulling the turkey at 170, the residual heat will continue to cook the turkey until it reaches 180. I also don’t cut my turkey for at least AN HOUR before slicing. Take that into consideration when you grill your next turkey to when you want to sit down and eat.
I grilled that turkey for Hannah and Jacob to take to his grandparents house for Thanksgiving. Jacob gave it two GIANT thumbs up, and brought the rest home so that he could have leftovers all week. #bestmotherinlawever 😀
While I am not an expert by any means, hit me up with any grilling questions you have – I’d be happy to answer them.
Another question I got on Instagram was whether or not I’d ever made a deep fried turkey, and Tony and I did that one year and never did it again. While it was an amazing turkey, we felt we could have gotten a turkey just as delicious either grilled or roasted. Deep frying outside is a whole other ballgame, because you have to contantly watch for flareups – oil and flame make me nervous! And sadly that year it was super chilly, and while I was cozy in the kitchen making the sides, Tony froze his ass off outside manning the turkey.
Which would you prefer? A grilled turkey or a deep fried one?!