Delicious and easy grilled whole turkey recipe that requires no basting, no hassle, and no stress for your Thanksgiving dinner.

It’s that time of the year, friends! Before you know it, Thanksgiving is coming right up, then it’s Christmas, then it’s New Year’s. Isn’t this the best time of the year in terms of spending lots of time with your family, your friends, and your dog (if you have one)?

If you are the cook in the house like me, you have probably already started planning the feast for Thanksgiving. Or, you have already felt the stress about cooking a turkey. That’s what we are going to talk about today. My goal is to remove as much stress as possible from your holiday meal prep.

Before we dive in, let’s make one thing clear. I am a total Thanksgiving newbie. To be precise, I am a turkey cooking noob. Look what I did for Thanksgiving the first year living in the US – a whole chicken. (Lame!) In 2014, we went to a friend’s house for thanksgiving because I simply had zero confidence to handle a whole bird that weighs more than 10 pounds. So how the heck am I going to help you with Thanksgiving cooking?

This year, I seriously put my feet down on doing a Thanksgiving dinner the legit way. My turkey cooking practice started three months ago, at the end of July, aka in the middle of the summer in Florida! Can you imagine that? That was no fun. However, I put on my crazy pants and cooked two turkeys back to back in order to get things right. Now I get to share the result with you, totally worth it!

This bird is a good news for beginners. It’s a better news for someone who has extensive turkey cooking experience for two reasons:

  1. No basting is required. You get to prepare Thanksgiving sides in peace without taking the bird in and out of the oven for multiple times.
  2. It’s got a crispy skin, tender meat and super savory flavor that everyone will enjoy!

I truly hope that you will enjoy this whole turkey recipe and find it lower your stress level during cooking if you decide to give it a shot for your Thanksgiving. If so, I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment, shot me an email or tag @streetsmartkitchen on Instagram. Whatever you are comfortable with, it will mean a world to me.

On a side note, there’s something I have been working on for months, and things are finally get together. It is a slow cooker meal plan that’s designed for busy people who want to eat healthy and delicious homemade food without having to put a lot of time and effort into cooking. If that’s you and you know of someone who will benefit from this meal plan, please check out and share. It would be greatly appreciated, as always.

More Thanksgiving recipes are coming your way soon. Stay tuned!

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Grilled Whole Turkey

Easy Grilled Whole Turkey Recipe

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 6 reviews
  • Author: Sharon Chen
  • Prep Time: 8 hours 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 hours 45 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Grill
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free
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Delicious and easy grilled whole turkey recipe that requires no basting, no hassle, and no stress for your Thanksgiving dinner.


  • 1 (12-15 lbs) whole turkey, thoroughly thawed
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried sage
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried cilantro


  1. Remove and discard giblets and neck from turkey. Trim excess fat and rinse the turkey with cold water. Pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Gently separate skin from the breast and drumsticks by inserting your fingers and slowing pushing between the skin and the meat. Be careful not to break the skin. Place turkey on a big plate.
  3. Combine all spices and herbs in a small bowl. Rub seasoning mixture over the turkey as well as under the skin. Cover turkey loosely with foil; refrigerate overnight.
  4. When ready to cook, preheat grill to 375°F.
  5. Place the marinated turkey directly on the grill and close the cap. Grill for 2.5 hours undisturbed or until meat thermometer registers 180°F. Serve with your favorite stuffing and cranberry sauce.


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 30
  • Sugar: 2.4g
  • Sodium: 588mg
  • Fat: 0.7g
  • Saturated Fat: 0.1g
  • Carbohydrates: 3.5g
  • Fiber: 0.7g
  • Protein: 2.9g
  • Cholesterol: 7mg

About the Author

Sharon Chen is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and author of the Complete Sous Vide Cookbook. She believes food not only brings healing but also connection. As the creator of StreetSmart Kitchen, she aims to make meal prep easier than ever and help you find balance, ease, joy, and simplicity in the kitchen as you improve your well-being.