Herb Brined Turkey


One of my favorite times of the year is Thanksgiving. I love the savory scents of sage and rosemary as the stuffing is made, the sweet aromas of pumpkin and apple pies as they bake, and the yeasty smell of freshly baked dinner rolls. My mouth is watering already!

Everyone has foods they hope to see on the table and, in my case, I look for a new recipe for everyone to try. The recipes this month include a couple of family favorites, but most just sounded too good not to include. I’m always looking for a different spin on an old favorite, and my taste testers enjoyed every one.

Herb Brined Turkey

Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword Thanksgiving


  • 12-14 lb. whole turkey thawed rinsed with giblets removed

Brine solution:

  • 3/4 c. Salt
  • 3/4 c. Brown sugar
  • 2 oranges quartered
  • 2 lemons quartered
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1-1/2 gallons cold water

Before baking

  • 2 lemons quartered
  • 3 T. butter room temperature
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 lg. onion cut into 1/8ths
  • 1 stalk Celery cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 lg. carrot cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 bunch fresh sage
  • 3 sprigs Fresh parsley
  • 1 c. turkey stock for basting


  • For brining solution, dissolve salt and sugar in water in a clean 5-gallon pail or large food grade plastic storage bag.
  • Add oranges, lemons, thyme and rosemary.
  • Soak rinsed turkey in brine, covered and refrigerated for up to 24 hours.
  • Remove turkey from brine, rinse well in cold water and pat dry, inside and out.
  • Place breast side up in a large roasting pan with a rack.
  • Rub all sides with softened butter and stuff some under skin.
  • Season lightly with salt and pepper, inside and out.
  • Stuff the turkey with all of the remaining ingredients except the turkey stock.
  • Roast turkey in 350-degree oven for 15 minutes per pound, basting with turkey stock every 30 minutes, or until thermometer reads 160 degrees.
  • Remove from oven, cover with foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes.