Yes. You need to brine your turkey before you put that bird in the oven. You do not want a dry, bland tasting bird – you want people to ooh and ahh over how moist and full of flavor the meat is. Here is my tried and true brining recipe. What exactly is brining you may ask? The process of brining means soaking meat in a solution of water and salt before cooking. Yes – it really is that simple. As it soaks, the meat absorbs the brine, then retains it during cooking. Follow this easy turkey bringing recipe for the perfect bird this Thanksgiving!
Don’t forget to make sure your turkey is defrosted (remember it can take up to two days to defrost!) before you begin.
|Turkey 12-17 lbs||2 gallons||1 cups table salt or
1.5 cups Kosher salt
|Turkey 18-24 lbs||3 gallons||1.5 cups table salt or
2.25 cups Kosher salt
1 Tbsp black peppercorns
2 Bay leaves
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock, optional
1 onion, quartered
4 garlic gloves
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp cloves
1 lemon, quartered
1 orange, quartered
1 cup sugar or brown sugar**
**If creating a Keto-friendly turkey, do not add the brown sugar. Instead, grab the largest jar of pickles you can find. Costco usually has 1 gallon for under $4. Eat the pickles (you’re welcome!) and add all of the pickle juice to the recipe. I picked up this trick from my friend Jennifer and will be brining my bird this way this year.
Heat one gallon of water, pour in all of the ingredients including the salt, and stir thoroughly until the ingredients are completely dissolved. Refrigerate or leave outside if you live in Alaska like me, until the brine is cold. In the largest stock pot that you have or clean ice chest, put your turkey in and add in the brine mixture. Ensure that the entire bird is submerged for the full brining period. Refrigerate the bird for a minimum of 8 hours and no longer than 48. The sweet spot is around 24 hours. Last year, I left it in there for 48 hours and it was superb. I also have thawed out the turkey in the brine on more than one occasion – brilliant idea!
Once the turkey has brined overnight, remove it from the brine solution, rinse it off, and pat it dry. You are now ready to prep your turkey for the oven. Luckily, I have My Famous Drunken Turkey Recipe for you. It is simply the best turkey recipe out there. I might be biased, but the amount of people that ask me to make this every year is quite high!
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I also just started using Thrive Marketplace – the Go To Place for organic, sustainable food that won’t break the bank!