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Sweet and spicy…these Giant Fair-Style Turkey Legs are even better than the fair and will put a smile on kids’ faces everywhere.
Every year we go to the Renaissance Festival and my daughter freaks out over the giant turkey legs. She absolutely loves them…they are a special treat for her. In fact, we recently had one when we were at Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World. Seeing her face light up as she realized she’d get to have a second giant turkey leg in one year, my momma heart melted and I knew I needed to figure out how to make them at home for her.
Before, I share this delicious recipe, I want to tell you about the amazing trip I took to a VA turkey farm recently.
I recently spent some time at one of the independent family-owned turkey farms for Shady Brook Farms and Honeysuckle White. The Miller family was so gracious and opened their home to me and shared their love and passion of raising turkeys.
The baby turkeys are only 10 days old here and they were so curious….our family chickens aren’t even this interested in us. They were so cute and I totally wanted to smuggle a couple in my luggage to take home.
Don’t freak out….I told you these babies were super curious. I knelt down to get a picture and they all ran over to me…so imagine a swarm of baby turkeys all running at you at the same time…this is what it looks like. And the brand new barn they are living in is gigantic. It is so big that we only walked half of it, most of the time with all the babies following closely behind us.
- 1/2 cup table salt
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tbsp onion powder
- 2 tbsp garlic powder
- 2 tbsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tbsp poultry seasoning
- 1 tbsp Tabasco
- 2 bay leaves
- 3/4-1 gallon water
- 6 large turkey legs
- 2 tbsp chili powder
- 2 tsp steak seasoning
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt
- olive oil
- Mix all the brine ingredients in a large container with a lid and add turkey legs. Let sit in brine for 12-24 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Prepare charcoal grill for indirect cooking at about 325F. Meanwhile, remove turkey legs from brine, rinse and pat dry. Mix rub ingredients together in a small bowl (except the olive oil). Lightly drizzle olive oil over the turkey legs, then sprinkle all the rub over the legs and gently rub o coat.
- Cook over indirect heat (325F) for 45 mins- 1 hour or until thickest part of leg is 165F. Turn legs every 10-15 minutes to cook evenly.
- Need more info on charcoal cooking....check out this post HOW TO GRILL USING A CHARCOAL GRILL.
This barn was painted by an amazing street painter from South America and it was done using nothing but spray paint!!!
I loved my time spent on one of the 700 family-owned farms and the home of Craig and Nancy Miller. They were so kind and let us sit around their family table to talk turkey.
What I learned was that these turkeys are not given any growth hormones or antibiotics….it’s more cost effective to just keep a clean and safe place for the birds than to go to the trouble of giving those products to the birds. Can you imagine trying to give several rounds of injections to 25,000 turkeys…the logistics of that would be insane. And even with all the safety measures, their food does not cost a premium. It’s good food and at a reasonable cost so that everyone has access to delicious turkey.
Don’t you just love those crazy white suits we had to wear?!?!? They kept the birds safe from any diseases and germs that we might have been carrying around with us. Sadly, the avian flu is killing birds all over the county and these suits help keep the barns and turkeys clean and healthy. They were quite the fashion statement.
There were only two other gals on the trip Erika from Musings of Stay at Home Mom (we’ve been online friends for years, so we were so excited to finally meet in person) and Scarlett from Made It, Ate It, Loved It. Check out their yummy turkey recipes: