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+ servings
5 from 2 votes
Turkey Brine
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Brine Time
8 hrs
Total Time
30 mins

You'll be extra grateful at Thanksgiving while eating this prepped turkey!

Course: dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: how to brine a turkey tutorial, thanksgiving dinner, turkey brine
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 692 kcal
Author: Kadee
Citrus Brine
  • 1 quart water
  • 1 1/2 cups kosher salt
  • 2 lemons quartered
  • 2 oranges quartered
  • 2 fresh springs rosemary needles removed and stem discarded
  • 10 fresh bay leaves
  • 10 fresh sage leaves
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp whole peppercorns
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • 3 quarts apple juice
  • Water to cover the bird
  • 12 lb turkey giblets removed
Garlic Herb Compound Butter
  • 1 cup salted butter softened
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh sage minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme minced
  • 5 cloves garlic mined
  • 1 lemon zested
Other ingredients
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 lemons quartered
  • 5 fresh sage leaves
  • 5 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 5 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1 onion quartered
  1. In a large stock pot combine 1 qt water, salt, lemons, oranges, rosemary, bay, sage, thyme, peppercorns, and syrup
  2. Bring to a boil.
  3. Remove from heat and add apple juice.
  4. Let cool completely.
  5. Place cleaned turkey in a large container (stock pot, brining bag, 10 gallon bucket, or unscented garbage bag)
  6. Pour brine over the bird. If bird is not submerged add water until it is. If bird floats, weigh it down with a bowl or plate.
  7. Keep bird in brine at 40 degrees F for 8-24 hours, turning the bird once.
  8. Once brining time is complete rinse and dry turkey and prep for cooking.
Garlic Herb Compound Butter
  1. In a medium bowl combine all ingredients. 

  2. Stir until well combined.

Bird Prep
  1. Preheat over to 450 degrees.

  2. Once brining is complete, rinse and dry bird.

  3. Place bird in a roasting pan.

  4. Place compound butter under the skin of the bird and rub the entire outside of the bird.

  5. Stuff cavity of bird with herbs, lemon, and onion.

  6. Reduce oven heat to 325 degrees.  Place bird inside oven and bake until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.  About 15 minutes per pound.

  7. Let bird rest 15 minutes before carving.

Recipe Video

Nutrition Facts
Turkey Brine
Amount Per Serving (1 pound)
Calories 692 Calories from Fat 297
% Daily Value*
Fat 33g51%
Saturated Fat 14g88%
Cholesterol 272mg91%
Sodium 14650mg637%
Potassium 907mg26%
Carbohydrates 26g9%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 19g21%
Protein 70g140%
Vitamin A 780IU16%
Vitamin C 37.5mg45%
Calcium 115mg12%
Iron 3.7mg21%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.