Butterflying and roasting an Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey makes the skin so crispy, and the meat juicy, tender, and oh, so good!

Orange Spatchcocked Turkey

Friends, looking for a little challenge, but the most delicious turkey to make for Christmas? Then this Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey is for you! It’s moist and so flavorful, and a beautiful presentation.

Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey

It’s amazing served with Vegetarian Miso Mushroom Stuffing (recipe coming soon), and a side of Brussels sprouts or green beans.

The perfect holiday meal!

slices of Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey with oranges and grapes garnish

Ingredients for Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey:

  • Turkey (we used a 12 pound)
  • Large oranges
  • Kosher salt + fresh cracked black pepper

Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey with garnish

Spiced Butter Rub

  • Unsalted butter
  • Kosher salt + fresh cracked black pepper
  • Sweet paprika + cinnamon
  • Honey
  • Rosemary + thyme
  • White wine

Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey with Oregon wine

Spatchcocked Turkey with Winderlea Pinot

The measurements used in this recipe are for a 12 lb turkey, so adjust according to the size of your bird; add more orange zest and pepper to the dry rub, and add a few more tablespoons butter and a bit more seasoning if you have a larger bird.

Oh, and we served it with an Oregon wine: Winderlea Pinot 2017 (from Dundee Hills, Oregon). Have you tried it?

sliced Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey

Why spatchcock a bird

Roasting a whole turkey can take an entire day, and typically, that day is a holiday, one that I’d rather spend with my family, outside of the kitchen.

Because I don’t want to spend hours cooking on holidays, I prefer to spatchcock my birds, chicken, duck, and especially turkey.

What does spatchcock mean? Usually it means to “split open” chicken or game birds, to prepare for grilling. But for this recipe, we roast the bird.

Spatchcocked Turkey

Roasting a spatchcocked bird

Spatchcocking removes a great deal of time and effort when cooking, and that’s why it’s my go-to roasting method.

This recipe starts at a high heat of 425 (conventional) and ends at 325 (conventional), so it takes about 7.5-8 minutes per pound of meat. Additionally, the salt to meat ratio is 2-2 1/2 teaspoons Diamond Kosher Salt per pound of turkey.

  1. Combine the zest, pepper, and salt. Remove anything in the turkey cavity, and reserve in a Ziploc bag to make stock at a later time.
  2. Rinse and pat dry, then season all over with the orange, pepper, and salt mixture, including the cavity.
  3. Place into a bag or container and marinate for 24-48 hours in the refrigerator.
  4. 1.25 hours before roasting the turkey, remove it from the refrigerator to spatchcock; using sharp kitchen shears, remove the backbone of the turkey WATCH THIS VIDEO HERE.
  5. Lay flat onto a baking sheet with a wire rack for about 1 hour.

Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey on baking sheet

Serve with this amazing Lemon Blackberry Bread Pudding for dessert! So good!

Finally, I came across this quote. What are you wanting for Christmas? (wink-wink)

“If you don’t get everything you want, think of the things you don’t get that you don’t want.”

— Oscar Wilde

ENJOY!

Orange Spatchcocked Turkey
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Orange Spiced Spatchcocked Turkey

Prep time: 30 minutes, and 24-48 hours to marinade Cook time: 1 1/2- 2 hours

Ingredients

Orange and Pepper Dry Rub

  • 1 12 lb turkey
  • 2 medium-large oranges, zested
  • ½ c Diamond Kosher Salt
  • 3 Tbsp fresh cracked black pepper

Spiced Butter Rub

  • ½ c unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 ½ Tbsp Diamond Kosher Salt
  • 2 tsp fresh black pepper
  • 2 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 2 Tbsp rosemary
  • 2 Tbsp thyme
  • 2 c white wine

Instructions

  • Dry Brine the Turkey:
  • Combine the zest, pepper, and salt. Remove anything in the turkey cavity, and reserve in a Ziploc bag to make stock at a later time. Rinse and pat dry, then season all over with the orange, pepper, and salt mixture, including the cavity. Place into a bag or container and marinate for 24-48 hours in the refrigerator.
  • 1.25 hours before roasting the turkey, remove it from the refrigerator to spatchcock; using sharp kitchen shears, remove the backbone of the turkey WATCH THIS VIDEO HERE (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZxWF0VyK60). Lay flat onto a baking sheet with a wire rack for about 1 hour.
  • Roast the Turkey:
  • Preheat oven to 400 convection, or 425 regular.
  • Make the Compound Butter:
  • Using a stand or hand mixer, cream together the butter, salt, pepper, paprika, cinnamon, honey, rosemary, and thyme until smooth. Set aside.
  • Cover the wing tips with foil, and tuck under the breasts to prevent them from burning.
  • Pat the bird dry, and place on the center rack of the oven for 30-35 minutes. Once the skin has begun to brown, remove the bird from the oven and baste with the butter collected at the bottom of the pan.
  • When returning the bird to the oven, rotate 180 degrees, reduce heat to 375 convention (400 regular), and pour wine over the bird (once the bird is sitting on the rack). Roast 30 more minutes, then pull from the oven and baste with butter and fat drippings once more. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until the skin has darkened in color. If the turkey is too browned, tent the areas with foil. Reduce heat to 325 convention (350 regular), and roast for 35-45 more minutes, or until a thermometer inserted into the breast (make sure to not hit the bone), reads 163-165 degrees.
  • Remove from oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes before carving. Serve with stuffing and cranberry sauce!
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Spatchcocked Turkey

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