YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Turkey on Grill Is Great Summer Treat

July 10, 1986

Don't forget turkey for a summer party when you're considering what to cook on the barbecue. Whole birds, as well as turkey parts, are delicious when grilled outdoors.

Whole turkeys are ideal for cooking in a covered barbecue kettle. Arrange the coals on opposite sides of the kettle and place a drip pan made from foil in the center to catch the juices and prevent flare-ups. Once the coals are hot, place the turkey on the grill directly over the drip pan, cover and open the vent.

More charcoal should be added every 45 minutes to maintain heat. Use a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh to insure doneness.

The internal temperature should reach 180 to 185 degrees. You can use a grilling time of 11 minutes per pound as a guide, but it is important to allow for some time variance because of differences in heat, or in the turkey itself.

Turkey parts can be grilled directly over the coals. Cooking time will vary with the size of the cut, from a few minutes for burgers and frankfurters to 45 or an hour for thighs and drumsticks.

Brush with sweet sauce or glaze only during the last 30 minutes of cooking to avoid overbrowning. Zesty Turkey Barbecue Sauce is a good choice for drumsticks and wings.


1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

3 to 6 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste

2 to 3 bay leaves, crumbled

Combine tomato sauce, brown sugar, lemon juice, Worcestershire, garlic, salt, pepper, cayenne and bay leaves. Brush on grilled turkey often during last 30 minutes of cooking. Makes basting sauce for 6 pounds of turkey parts.

Los Angeles Times Articles