Traeger Smoked Spatchcock Turkey: A Comprehensive Guide to Juicy Perfection

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Using Traeger Smoked Spatchcock Turkey is a delicious and easy way to cook a juicy and tender turkey. Cutting the bird in this way before you cook it ensures that the thighs and breasts cook evenly.

You will be accustomed to perfectly cooked, juicy, and flavorful meat—both white and dark—as Spatchcock Turkey is the best available!

Nutrition data provided here is only an estimate. If you are tracking these things for medical purposes please consult an outside, trusted source. Thanks!.

Looking for a turkey that is juicy, flavorful, and has crispy skin without sacrificing flavor? Look no further than the Traeger Smoked Spatchcock Turkey! This unique method paired with the wonders of a Traeger grill ensures that your guests will be talking about your Thanksgiving feast for years to come.

What is Spatchcocking?

Spatchcocking involves removing the backbone of the turkey, allowing it to lie flat on the grill. This method ensures even cooking, eliminates the dreaded dry breast problem, and reduces cooking time significantly.

Traeger’s Recipe for Smoked Spatchcock Turkey:


  • 1 (18-20 lb) turkey, preferably free-range, organic, and humanely raised
  • 1 Traeger Orange Brine and Turkey Rub Kit
  • 3/4 cup room temperature ghee or grass-fed butter
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary, plus extra for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage, plus extra for garnish


  1. Prep the Turkey: Using a sharp knife or kitchen shears, remove the backbone and set it aside for homemade turkey stock. Flip the turkey breast-side down and make an incision in the back of the breast bone. Flip the turkey so that it is breast-side-up and press down on the breasts to flatten it.
  2. Brine (Optional): Prepare the brine according to the instructions in the Traeger Orange Brine and Turkey Rub Kit. Place the turkey into the brine, ensuring it’s fully submerged. Transfer to the fridge and brine overnight or up to 24 hours.
  3. Pat Dry and Season: Remove the turkey from the brine and pat it dry with paper towels. Being careful not to pierce the skin, use your hands to separate the skin from the breast, creating a pocket of air. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a wire rack. Lay the turkey flat on the wire rack, breast-side-up.
  4. Prepare the Herb Butter: In a small bowl, combine the ghee, parsley, rosemary, thyme, and sage. Mix until incorporated.
  5. Stuff and Season: Using your hands, stuff the pocket between the breast meat and skin with the compound butter. Season the turkey liberally with Turkey Rub.
  6. Preheat and Smoke: Set the Traeger to 225°F and preheat with the lid closed for 15 minutes.
  7. Smoke the Turkey: Set the wire rack over a 4-inch-deep roasting dish and set the turkey on top, breast-side-up. Close the lid and smoke the turkey until the thickest part of the breast reaches an internal temperature of 100°F to 110°F, about 2 to 2.5 hours. Take into account temperature fluctuations due to ambient weather.
  8. Increase Heat and Baste: Raise the grill temperature to 375°F and cook the turkey, basting it with any rendered juices two or three times, until the thickest part of the breast reaches 160°F, about 1 to 1.5 hours.
  9. Rest and Carve: Transfer the cooked turkey to a carving board and loosely tent with foil. Let the turkey rest for at least 20 minutes before carving. Enjoy!

Tips and Tricks:

  • Spatchcocking: If you’re new to spatchcocking, don’t worry! It’s easier than it sounds. Watch a video tutorial online for a visual guide.
  • Brining: Brining is optional, but it adds extra moisture and flavor to the turkey. If you’re short on time, you can skip this step.
  • Temperature Control: Use a reliable meat thermometer to ensure the turkey reaches the correct internal temperature.
  • Basting: Basting with the rendered juices helps keep the turkey moist and flavorful.
  • Resting: Resting the turkey is crucial for allowing the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more tender and juicy bird.

Additional Resources:

With these tips and resources, you’re well on your way to mastering the Traeger Smoked Spatchcock Turkey! Get ready to impress your family and friends with this delicious and impressive dish.

Traeger Smoked Spatchcock Turkey Recipe

I don’t consider myself an “expert” in many things. I think part of the reason is that I’m a perfectionist as well, and I think that being a “expert” on something means you are an authority on it, and how could we ever know everything there is to know?

I feel like an expert after I made this turkey.

Turkey dinner is my FAVORITE dinner, you guys. I’ve posted about this many times before, but let me remind you. We’ve done a traditional Traeger Grilled Turkey already too that you’ll love. I’m SUPER particular about turkey because I love it so much. We had a traditional turkey dinner for our wedding meal – in August.

It was one of the best meals I’ve ever had, and my entire family helped to prepare it.

Fortunately, my family still loves me even though it didn’t seem like they wanted to cook turkey again until after I had been married for roughly five years. .

I was always skeptical about the Spatchcock method because normal turkey roasting is SO good. Plus, the stuffing. I can’t miss out on the stuffing. However, the extra juiciness in the turkey that all of the Spatchcock enthusiasts rave about piqued my curiosity.

Check out all of my Traeger Recipes!

how long to cook spatchcock turkey on a pellet grill

How to season a spatchcock turkey

Just because your bird is face down doesn’t mean you should skimp on seasoning the underside! Coat the entire bird with melted butter or oil, then liberally sprinkle on a good amount of herbs and seasoning.

For the turkey pictured here, I used a heavy hand with Traeger Chicken Rub, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and sage. You can use whatever seasoning mix/combination is your favorite. There are a lot of great combinations out there.

My advice is just to NOT SKIMP. You are seasoning a LOT of meat. It needs lots of flavor.

Get all of our Holiday Recipes here!

how long to cook spatchcock turkey on a pellet grill

How to Smoke a Spatchcock Turkey on a Pellet Grill | Heath Riles BBQ


How long does it take to smoke a spatchcock turkey on a pellet grill?

Once spritzed, close the lid back up and continue cooking. After around 3 hours (depending on size of turkey) your turkey should be reaching around 162F in the breast and around 175F in the thighs. This is perfect! Pull it off the grill, let it rest for 10-15 minutes and then slice it up and begin the feast!

How many minutes per pound to cook a spatchcock turkey?

A spatchcocked whole turkey will cook more quickly than a standard turkey. While the spatchcock turkey cooking time will depend on the size and oven temperature, 6 minutes per pound is a good rule of thumb. Depending on the size of the turkey, cook times are estimated between 60-90 minutes.

How long does it take to grill a Spatchcock turkey?

Place the turkey breast-side up over the drip pan and grill, covered, until the meat is cooked about halfway through, about 50 minutes. Turn and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the deepest part of the thigh registers 170 degrees F, about 50 minutes more.

Is it better to smoke a turkey at 225 or 250?

When smoking at 225°F, it can take about 30 to 45 minutes to cook one pound of turkey. That means a 12-pound turkey should take at least six hours to cook in a smoker. To smoke your turkey faster, increase the smoker’s temperature to 250°F to 275°F.

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