top of page

Brined Oven Roasted Turkey

Oven Roasted Turkey

Don’t forget to check out my Instagram account  – Or give me a follow on Facebook or see what I am pinning on Pinterest or Twitter!

Embrace the joyous spirit of the holiday season with our exquisite holiday turkey recipe. Whether it's Thanksgiving or Christmas, this traditional and festive centerpiece will grace your table with its aromatic presence. Our carefully crafted recipe guides you through the art of roasting a perfectly seasoned turkey, ensuring tender, moist meat encased in a golden, herb-infused skin. With herb-roasted holiday turkey, this dish is a delightful fusion of tradition and innovation, making it an ideal choice for your special occasion dinner. Embrace the warmth and togetherness of the holidays with this elegant, show-stopping feast that will leave your loved ones craving for more.

You Will Need

For the Turkey Brine:

  • 4 quarts cold water (plus more to cover the turkey completely, divided)

  • 8 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 sprigs rosemary

  • 1/2 container fresh thyme

  • 1/2 tablespoon whole black peppercorns (or 1/2 tablespoon ground pepper)

  • 1 cup brown sugar

  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 3/4 cup kosher salt (or 3 tablespoons table salt)

  • 2 large bay leaves

  • 1/2 tablespoon sage (ground sage is fine)

  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar

For the Herb Butter and Roasting:

  • 1 turkey (12-15 pounds)

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened

  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, finely chopped

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • 1 onion, cut in half

  • 3 whole garlic cloves

  • Aluminum foil

 

Thank you so much for supporting my site

Turkey Recipes

Basting a turkey, while a common practice, isn't as essential as one might think. The idea behind basting is to keep the turkey moist and to enhance its flavor by repeatedly coating it with its own juices or a flavorful liquid. However, modern ovens are designed to maintain a consistent temperature, and frequently opening the oven to baste the turkey can actually prolong the cooking time and result in a drier bird. If you've properly brined the turkey or used a flavorful rub, the need for basting diminishes. Instead, consider using a butter-soaked cheesecloth or a roasting pan with a lid to help keep the turkey moist during the cooking process. Ultimately, whether or not to baste comes down to personal preference, but it's not a make-or-break step for a delicious roasted turkey.

How To Make Herb-Infused Roasted Turkey
Recipe with Brine

Preparing the Brine:

  1. In a large stockpot, combine 4 quarts of cold water, minced garlic cloves, rosemary sprigs, fresh thyme, black peppercorns (or ground pepper), brown sugar, lemon juice, kosher salt (or table salt), bay leaves, sage, and apple cider vinegar.

  2. Stir well to dissolve the salt and sugar.

Brining the Turkey (Day 1):

  • Place the turkey in the brine mixture, ensuring it is fully submerged. If necessary, add more cold water to cover the turkey completely.

  1. Cover the pot and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours. The longer you brine, the more flavorful the turkey will be.

Preparing for Roasting (Day 2):

  1. Preheat your oven to 250°F (120°C).

  2. Remove and Rinse:

    • Remove the turkey from the brine and rinse it thoroughly under cold water.

    • Pat the turkey dry with paper towels, both inside and out.

Herbed Butter:

  • In a bowl, mix together the softened butter, finely chopped rosemary, finely chopped thyme, salt, and pepper to taste.

  1. Carefully loosen the skin of the turkey by sliding your fingers under the skin, being careful not to tear it.

  2. Rub the herb butter under the turkey skin, evenly distributing it over the breast and legs.

  3. Place one sprig of fresh thyme and one sprig of fresh rosemary under the skin.

  4. Stuff the Turkey:

    • Cut the onion in half and place both halves inside the turkey cavity along with the three whole garlic cloves.

Roasting:

  • Cover the turkey breast with aluminum foil to prevent overcooking.

  • Place the turkey on a rack in a roasting pan.

  • Roast in the preheated oven for 7 to 8 hours. Remove the foil halfway through the cooking time to allow the skin to brown evenly.

Rest and Carve:

  • Once the turkey is done, remove it from the oven and let it rest for 15 minutes before carving.

  1. Serve and Enjoy:

 

Carve the turkey and serve as desired. Enjoy your flavorful, herb-infused roasted turkey!

This updated recipe uses the new brine ingredients you provided for a delicious, herb-infused roasted turkey.

Thank you so much for supporting my site

Brining a turkey can offer several benefits when preparing a roasted turkey:

  1. Enhanced Flavor: Brining infuses the turkey with a flavorful liquid mixture that includes salt, herbs, spices, and other seasonings. This helps season the meat from the inside out, resulting in a more flavorful and well-seasoned turkey.

  2. Improved Moisture Retention: The salt in the brine helps the turkey retain moisture during the cooking process. This means that the meat is less likely to become dry and overcooked, resulting in a juicier and more tender bird.

  3. Tenderizing Effect: The salt in the brine can also have a tenderizing effect on the meat, making it more tender and easier to carve.

  4. Customizable Flavors: Brines can be customized with various herbs, spices, and aromatics to create unique flavor profiles. You can experiment with different ingredients to achieve the taste you desire.

  5. Uniform Seasoning: Brining ensures that the turkey is evenly seasoned throughout, which can be challenging to achieve with traditional surface seasoning alone.

  6. Reduced Cooking Time: Because the turkey retains more moisture, it can cook more quickly and evenly, reducing the risk of the outer portions becoming overcooked before the center is done.

  7. Golden Crispy Skin: When the turkey is roasted, the brine can help contribute to a beautifully browned and crispy skin.

It's important to note that while brining has these benefits, it does require some advance planning, as the turkey needs to soak in the brine for a period of time (usually 12-24 hours) before cooking. Additionally, it's essential to rinse the turkey thoroughly after brining to remove excess salt from the surface before roasting. Overall, brining can be a valuable technique for achieving a flavorful and moist roasted turkey, especially for special occasions like Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Thank you so much for supporting my site

There are many variations and adaptations of the herb-infused roasted turkey recipe to suit different tastes and dietary preferences. Here are some variations you can try:

Citrus-Infused Turkey:

  • Add citrus zest (lemon, orange, or lime) to the herb butter for a fresh, tangy flavor.

  • Replace some of the water in the brine with citrus juice for extra citrus notes.

Spicy Herb Turkey:

  • Add crushed red pepper flakes or minced jalapeños to the herb butter for a spicy kick.

  • Use more peppercorns in the brine for a peppery flavor.

Herb and Garlic Roasted Turkey:

  • Increase the amount of garlic in the herb butter for a stronger garlic flavor.

  • Add additional fresh herbs like sage or oregano to the herb mixture.

Maple Glazed Turkey:

  • Brush the turkey with maple syrup during the roasting process for a sweet and savory glaze.

Mediterranean-Inspired Turkey:

  • Season the herb butter with Mediterranean herbs like oregano, basil, and thyme.

  • Stuff the turkey with lemon wedges, olives, and garlic.

Smoked Turkey:

  • Use a smoker instead of an oven to impart a smoky flavor to the turkey. You can still use the herb-infused butter and brine for added moisture and flavor.

Asian-Inspired Turkey:

  • Use ingredients like ginger, soy sauce, and sesame oil in the brine and butter for an Asian twist.

  • Stuff the turkey with lemongrass, garlic, and ginger.

Herb-Crusted Turkey:

  • Create an herb crust by mixing finely chopped herbs with breadcrumbs and pressing it onto the turkey's skin before roasting.

Vegetarian/Vegan Option:

  • For a vegetarian or vegan alternative, you can use a large, whole cauliflower or a plant-based roast. Marinate or brine it similarly to the turkey for flavor.

 

Gluten-Free Option: - Ensure that all ingredients, including the seasonings, herbs, and the stuffing, are gluten-free if you or your guests have dietary restrictions.

These variations offer a range of flavors and styles, allowing you to customize the herb-infused roasted turkey recipe to your liking and create a unique and memorable holiday meal.

bottom of page