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Oct 23, 2012
Let's Revisit: Butter Injected Grilled Turkey
For Thanksgiving!

a grilled thanksgiving turkey recipe


Ok you busted me. I got nothing. I don't have a new recipe for this week so I figured it's worth getting pumped up a bit for Thanksgiving. I mean this is the greatest holiday ever so how can you be too prepared? Exactly. You can't. I've fried turkeys, baked turkeys and smoked turkeys. This one is my favorite and it's so easy. I posted this a year ago and it's worth revisiting. A fantastic butter injection for a grilled turkey. It also has a spicy dry rub on it. Really nice.

Ingredients:

For the injection:
1 tsp Popcorn Salt
1 stick of salted butter

For the dry rub:
1 T Black Pepper
1 T Salt
1 T Red Pepper
1 T Dried Parsley
1 T Dried Onion Flakes

1 Turkey

Normally I'm all about brining the turkey. The problem is that I hate cleaning up the bucket that I use for brining and I also dislike having all that raw turkey liquid splashing everywhere. I found the solution in a injection. I picked up a little injection kit at my grocery store and thought to myself, "what flavors would I like in my turkey breast?" Butter and salt jumped into my mind instantly so I went with it.

To make the injection liquid I microwaved the stick of butter (a little bit at a time) until it was liquid. I then stirred in 1 tsp of popcorn salt until it was totally in solution. Popcorn salt is very finely ground salt so it works best for injections because it is less likely to clog the needle tip.

a butter injection for a turkey breast

After the injection solution was made I filled the injector and injected each breast 5 times. I did 4 vertical injections and 1 horizontal injection to make sure I got good coverage. I also injected the legs and thighs a few times.

injecting a turkey with butter

After the injection I put the turkey into the fridge for about 3 hours. I would aim anywhere from 30min to 3-4 hours.

injecting a grilled turkey with butter

After a little while the melted butter solidifies. In the picture above you see how the melted butter solidified running down the side of the turkey.

While the turkey is hanging out in the fridge I made a quick dry rub. 1 T of each of the dry ingredients in a bowl and there you have it. Load up the outside of the bird and really try your best to get it under the skin. Really easy and really spicy!

spicy dry rub for a grilled turkey

For grilling the turkey I decided to go simple and easy. Indirect medium/medium high heat for a couple of hours until the breast registers 160 degrees F. For indirect heat I used the Weber indirect baskets about 3/4 full on each side of the grill. In between the baskets I placed an aluminum drip pan with a little water in it so the drippings wouldn't burn. I then put the turkey right in the middle, closed the lid and let her cook! The starting temperature was about 400 degrees F.

After a couple of hours of cooking my temperature had only dropped to about 350 degrees; however, I did add a few handfuls of unlit coals during the cook whenever the temperature got too close to 350. When I removed the turkey from the grill I brought it inside and let it rest for about 15 minutes until carving time.

carving a grilled turkey

It is important to keep the skin on when you are slicing so the dry rub will spread on to the meat. This gets the spicy dry rub flavor down to the meat.

carving a grilled turkey

Wow, this turkey is amazing. The butter flavor dominates the turkey (I mean I did do 5 injections in each breast!) and the spicy dry rub really provides some welcome kick to the turkey. I hope you give this a try for Thanksgiving this year. This is a really easy grilled turkey recipe that produces outstanding results!

A note from my 2011 Thanksgiving cook: The starting dome temperature was 400 degrees. The internal turkey breast temperature started out at 58 degrees. After 1.5 hours the internal breast temperature was 158 degrees. After 1.5 hours the dome temperature was really low at about 300 degrees. Another 15-20 minutes was needed to get it to 165 degrees.

grilled turkey







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