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Wild Turkey Recipe: Grilled Southwestern Wild Turkey Roll

Josh Dahlke | THE HUNGER

Wild Turkey Recipe Southwestern Wild Turkey Roll

You don’t need a Rio Grande gobbler to prepare this grilled turkey treat; it’ll work equally well for every subspecies, but no doubt you’ll catch some Southwestern vibes when you bite into the finished product.

Grilling wild turkey can be challenging. There are a handful of crafty methods for retaining moisture and tenderness in your bird while it’s resting over a pile of dry, smoky coals. This recipe employs a few of them: pounding, marinating and foil tenting. By pounding out the breast, you can cook the meat faster at a higher temperature without giving it too much time to dry out. Marinating in milk puts lactic acid to work as it breaks down muscle fibers (tenderize) and adds moisture to the meat. Tenting the meat in foil allows smoke to reach the meat while minimizing moisture loss from evaporation.


  • 1 wild turkey breast
  • 1/4 gallon milk
  • 1 jar roasted red bell peppers (16-ounce)
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 3 cups shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 1 tablespoon ground chipotle chile pepper
  • 1 tablespoon coarse ground salt
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika


  1. Pound out turkey breast with a meat tenderizer mallet until 1/2-inch thick.
  2. Marinate turkey breast in milk for 8-12 hours.
  3. Remove turkey breast from marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Coat entire breast with even mixture of chipotle chile pepper, coarse ground salt, and smoked paprika. This simple dry rub works well for all sorts of wild game! (Hint: Pick up some black lava salt to wow your dinner guests with its unique flavor and grill-enhancing color.
  4. Layout breast flat on cutting board. Smother with minced garlic, pepper jack cheese, and roasted red bell peppers.
  5. Roll up the breast to keep contents inside.
  6. Sear outside of turkey roll on a hot grill. Be careful to keep roll intact when flipping. (Optional: Tie it shut with butcher’s twine before grilling.)
  7. Tent turkey roll in tinfoil, cook until internal temp reaches 160 degrees - not a degree higher.

Let rest 10 minutes. Slice to order. 

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