Grilled Turkey Recipe

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When a whole turkey is cooked on the grill, the skin becomes crisp and nicely browned and the meat becomes tender and juicy with that distinctive grilled taste. Try cooking a whole turkey on the grill for Thanksgiving as an alternative to oven roasting.
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  • whole turkey - 12 to 14 pounds
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • choice of herbs
Container: Charcoal or gas grill
30 mins
3 hrs
4 hrs
  • If the turkey is frozen, defrost it completely before grilling.
  • Remove the giblets and neck from the turkey cavity. Wash the outside and cavity of the turkey. Pat dry.
  • Rub the outside of bird with olive oil. Season the inside with salt, pepper, and choice of herbs.
  • If the turkey is to be placed direcly on the grill rack or in a drip pan, coat the rack or the pan with olive oil or something similar to prevent the turkey from sticking.
  • Position the turkey with the breast side up on the grill rack or in the pan; then place it on the grill.
  • Keep the grill lid closed as much as possible to prevent heat loss. The temperature should be maintained at 325ºF.
  • Grill approximately 13 to 15 minutes per pound if cooking on a charcoal grill or 20 minutes per pound for a gas grill. Cook until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 180ºF or 170ºF when inserted into the breast.
  • A 12 to 14 pound turkey will require approximately 2-1/2 to 3 hours cooking time depending on how steady the cooking temperature was maintainted.
  • If the turkey begins to brown too quickly, cover it with a foil tent.
  • Remove the turkey from the grill and allow it to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before carving, which will allow the juices to evenly distribute.
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