Brine for roast turkey

    8 hours 20 min

    This is a tasty brine for any poultry. It will make your bird very juicy, and gravy to die for!! This is enough brine for a 5 to 8kg turkey.

    1052 people made this

    Serves: 15 

    • 3L vegetable stock
    • 275g sea salt
    • 1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary
    • 1 tablespoon dried sage
    • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
    • 1 tablespoon dried savory
    • 1L ice water

    Prep:5min  ›  Cook:15min  ›  Extra time:8hr  ›  Ready in:8hr20min 

    1. In a large stock pot, combine the vegetable stock, sea salt, rosemary, sage, thyme and savory. Bring to the boil, stirring frequently to be sure salt is dissolved. Remove from heat, and let cool to room temperature.
    2. When the stock mixture is cool, pour it into a clean large bucket. Stir in the ice water.
    3. Place the turkey, breast down, into the brine. Make sure that the cavity gets filled. Place the bucket in the fridge overnight.
    4. Remove the turkey carefully, draining off the excess brine, and pat dry. Discard excess brine.
    5. Cook the turkey as desired reserving the dripping for gravy. Keep in mind that brined turkeys cook 20 to 30 minutes faster so watch the internal temperature closely.

    Turkey tips

    For fail-safe tips and turkey cooking times see our guide to cooking turkey. Also don't forget our turkey gravy recipes.

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    Reviews & ratings
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    Reviews in English (908)


    I love brining but I think it's important to mention when brining in a plastic bag or container, make sure that the plastic is FOOD GRADE! You should NEVER, NEVER, EVER brine in a garbage bag or ordinary household bucket. PCB's are not good for you.  -  14 Nov 2007  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    A great brine. I doubled the recipe for a 22 lb. turkey and used 1 gal. apple juice and 1 gal. vegetable broth instead of all broth. I also used ground spices instead of dried. I put the turkey in a clean plastic trash bag, then placed it in a large cooler. Next, I poured the brine in the bag and tied it closed. I placed a gallon of frozen water in the cooler next to the bag to keep the whole thing cool while it marinated overnight. Watch out for the cooking time on this one as a brined bird cooks much faster - especially if you're using a roasting bag (which I did). My 22 lber cooked in only 2 1/2 hours!!  -  29 Dec 2005  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    Cannot even describe how amazing this was. My mom's turkeys have always been just okay, and so I decided to take charge for Easter dinner and make this. It was my first turkey and no one could believe how incredibly juicy, tender, and moist it was. I followed the recipe for the brine exactly, including just letting the bucket sit in a cool place overnight. To cook it, I put an onion, carrot and celery stalk into the cavity. It started breast side down in a 325 degree oven for 2 hours. Then I turned it over and it took another 45 minutes or so to be done. For the last 15 minutes I turned the oven up to 400 to finish browning and basted it with a little butter. Did not cover it with foil, and otherwise didn't bother basting it. The meat was literally falling off the bones it was so tender and the flavor went all through the meat. It was seriously about as foolproof as you could get. The only change I'll make next time is to either reduce the sea salt or substitute water for some of the vegetable broth. It was just a touch on the salty side, I think because broth is often high in salt to begin with. Don't be afraid to try this recipe, it really was that easy. Cannot recommend it enough.. and ditto the other reviewers' comments on the drippings -- they make amazing gravy.  -  17 Apr 2006  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)