The best and fastest way to cook a turkey is to Spatchcock. We did ours on Thanksgiving for the first time and it was amazing.
I honestly could not believe how easy and quick this was, it was juicy even though we didn’t let it rest very much. The breast that did not get cut right away was juicy the next day. It was so good, had great flavor, and was definitely a win.
We got a 14-pound turkey and put it in the fridge to thaw starting Sunday night. Then on Wednesday, I spatchcocked the turkey by cutting out the backbone using kitchen shears.
When I did that it allows me to take out all of the innards and whatnot. After the backbone is cut out, you need to cut out the wishbone with a sharp paring knife, it makes it easier to break the ribs.
You need to spread out the turkey as much as you can then you press down on the breast like you are giving the bird CPR. The ribs will break, I had to stand on a chair to get enough leverage to break the ribs.
When you do that it puts the breast at the same level as the thighs which will allow it to cook more evenly and quickly, giving you an overall more juicy bird.
Next, I bought a pre-made brine from CAL ranch, just a basic one that had onion, mustard, garlic, salt, and sugar. We mixed up the brine as the directions suggested and then put it in a 5-gallon bucket. We added the turkey and make sure it’s submerged in the brine and refrigerate overnight at least 1 hour per pound.
Pull your turkey out of the brine and set on a grate to drain off extra brine and pat down with paper towels to make the skin dry. Meanwhile, preheat the smoker to 350 degrees. Place the turkey on a cookie sheet and inject it with one pound of melted butter.
I injected it all over the turkey until it was bursting. Anything leftover rub on the skin. Then season it how you like, I did a butter, garlic, and sea salt rub I got from Scheel’s. I was pretty liberal with the rub because some of it comes off in the smoker.
I read it would be around 2 to 2 1/2 hours, it took us 3 1/2 hours to reach 165 degrees in the breast and 175 degrees in the thighs. Mainly because it was snowing outside and it’s pretty windy in our area.
Plan ahead for things like this, we were a little late to start our dinner because it took longer to cook. You should also let it rest for 45 minutes before cutting because it allows the meat to stay juicy.