BBQ Turkey and Bacon? Two Great Tastes that Taste Great Together! No Tech Required!

For the last 10 years or so, I have been trying to perfect the concept of the BBQ Turkey at Thanksgiving.  Since I love to BBQ, and of course, I love Bacon, putting the two together seemed very natural.  What a delicious combo they have become!

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As I have mentioned this creation to others, many of asked, “just how do you pull it off?”  So this year (2011), I decided to document it here and share it with anyone interested in reading about it.  Enjoy.

For the second year in a row now, we have doubled the mess and cooked two turkeys at once.  It can be done one at a time, however.  It’s important that you follow all the same rules as you would cooking it any other way.


(Click Any Picture to Enlarge)

2011-11-24 07.38.12The first step is getting the cooking envelope ready for the birds.  This year we found that Reynolds makes a wrap that is extra wide.  This is very helpful and saves an extra step when it comes to building the pouch (you will see why here in a second). 
2011-11-24 07.38.21Take 2 sheets of the foil, about 24 to 30 inches in length and lay one on top of the other.  Line up the edges so that they are even and straight.
2011-11-24 07.39.36Make a half inch fold all the way down the top edge of the foil. Then do it again.

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When you open the foil, it should make one large sheet.  Do this over again so you have two large sheets.
2011-11-24 07.51.31At this point, I thoroughly wash and rinse the bird and remove all the stuff that comes with it.  There always seems to be some hidden gems inside, so make sure you get everything out.  Plastic ties for the legs, a bag of guts or the neck, find it all!
2011-11-24 07.55.04Here is where you can be very creative with your seasoning.  I usually just grab whatever sounds good from the spice cabinet and start seasoning.  Salt, pepper, garlic salt, onion powder, Mrs. Dash, you name it.  Just have fun with it. 

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Now it’s time to start wrapping it up and maybe the most important part.  Grab the two opposite corner ends closest to the head of the bird and bring them together.  Work your way down the new seam curling in under itself.

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Work it until the seam is tight up against the bird.  Have fun with it.  Perfection is not necessary.

One you have completed one side, do the other the exact same way.  make sure you leave a large opening on the top and DO NOT completely wrap the turkey. 

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You should now have a nice pouch for the turkey.  Time to add the liquid ingredients. 

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I like to use a zesty Italian salad dressing and Heinz 57 sauce.  I never measure the amounts.  Just apply.

2011-11-24 08.04.36Now here is the best part.  BACON.  I take a 1 lbs. package of thick cut smoked bacon (or whatever your favorite is) and lay strips over the beast.  I have done it different ways and with different patterns, but I am not sure the pattern matters.  Just cover the top best you can.
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Finish wrapping the bird with the foil but be sure to leave a 2 to 4 inch opening at the top for heat to get out.

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Place it on the grill.  I cook it at medium heat for about 3 hours, checking occasionally with a temperature probe.  When the inside temps are correct, take them off the heat and let them rest for 20 to 30 min.  While they are resting, the magic begins!

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Once the turkey is off the grill, carefully open the foil at the top of the bird so you can get to the bacon.  Then take the bacon off the turkey and put it back on the grill to re-season it.  Over the last few hours your grill’s cooking surface has completely dried out due to the heat.  This process will season your grill back to perfection.  Just WATCH OUT for the grease fire than my ensue.

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Your Turkey is now complete!  Let it rest for 20 to 30 minutes, cut it and enjoy!  If you still have questions, send them to