This is the perfect recipe for anyone looking to add some extra flavor and moisture to their holiday turkey. This simple brine recipe is easy to make and only requires a few ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen. With just a little bit of planning ahead, you can have a delicious and moist turkey that will be the star of your holiday meal.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE
- This turkey brine is easy to make with just a few simple ingredients.
- It also adds flavor and moisture to your turkey.
- And it makes for a stress-free holiday meal.
You only need a few kitchens to help you make this delicious turkey brine.
- large pot
- medium saucepan
- large wooden spoon or whisk
You only need a few simple ingredients to make this flavorful turkey brine. All of these ingredients are easy to find at your local grocery store when you make your trip to gather all of your holiday items.
- Kosher Salt
- whole peppercorns
- medium red onion, peeled and quartered
- bay leaves
- fresh rosemary
- fresh thyme
- fresh sage
- lemon, sliced
- orange, sliced
- water at room temperature
- water, chilled
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO THAW A TURKEY?
You will need to thaw the turkey in advance if it is frozen. Depending on size it can take from 2-5 days to defrost a turkey, so be sure to plan ahead.
HOW TO MAKE THIS EASY TURKEY BRINE RECIPE
Making the brine for your turkey is so simple. Just follow the instructions below and you will have a brine that will add some great flavor and moisture to your Thanksgiving bird.
STEP 1: THAW TURKEY AND REMOVE THE GIBLETS AND NECK
Thaw turkey ahead of time if frozen. Remove any giblets or neck sections and set them aside for stock if desired.
STEP 2: ADD ALL BRINE INGREDIENTS TO A LARGE STOCK POT
Make the brine: Add the brining ingredients into a stock pot large enough to hold the turkey. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a separate pot.
STEP 3: ADD BOILING WATER TO THE BRINE INGREDIENTS AND WHISK WELL
Add boiling water to the stock pot and whisk until the salt is dissolved.
STEP 4: ADD THE COLD WATER
Add the 6 cups of chilled water to the finished brining solution.
STEP 5: ADD THE TURKEY TO THE BRINE
Add turkey to the stock pot with brining solution and place in the refrigerator for 8 to 24 hours.
STEP 6: RINSE THE TURKEY
After brining, remove the turkey from the solution, rinse it under cool water, and lay it on a baking rack, and allow it to drain.
STEP 7: DRY THE TURKEY
Pat any remaining moisture from the skin of the turkey prior to cooking.
WHAT TO SERVE TURKEY
Serve your Smoked turkey with any of your holiday favorites such as:
SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS
Here are a few ways that you can personalize this turkey brine recipe.
- If you don’t have all of the herbs listed for this recipe, no worries. Just use what you have on hand or leave them out entirely. This turkey brine is still flavorful without the herbs.
- You could also add a few garlic cloves to the mix if you wanted to give it an extra boost of flavor.
- Don’t have any oranges on hand? You could use lemons instead. Just add a few extra to the recipe since they are smaller than oranges.
- If you want to add a little bit of sweetness to the brine, try adding a cup of honey.
- If you run out of time, season the turkey with this homemade Poultry Seasoning Recipe.
HOW TO STORE
You can store this turkey brine in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Be sure to label it with the date that you made it so you know when to use it.
When you are ready to use it, just remove it from the fridge and allow it to come to room temperature before adding your turkey.
Do you have questions about this turkey brine recipe? Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions for this recipe.
Yes, you should rinse your turkey after brining it. This helps to remove any excess salt from the surface of the skin.
No, you don’t have to cook your turkey immediately after brining it. You can brine your turkey up to 2 days in advance. Just be sure to keep it stored in the fridge until you are ready to cook it.
To get crispy skin on a brined turkey you need to make sure the skin is completely dry. I like to allow the turkey to sit in the fridge uncovered for two hours after I’ve finished and dried it to allow the skin to naturally dry out.
I think so! I find that brining a turkey helps to keep it moist and flavorful. It’s an extra step, but one that I think is worth it for the end result.
A wet brine is a solution of water and salt that you soak your turkey in. A dry brine is a mixture of salt and spices that you rub all over the turkey.
OTHER DELICIOUS TURKEY RECIPES YOU MAY ENJOY
- 1 cup Kosher Salt
- 1 tablespoon whole peppercorns
- 1 medium red onion, peeled and quartered
- 3 bay leaves
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
- Bundle fresh thyme
- 3 sprigs fresh sage
- 1 lemon, sliced
- 1 orange, sliced
- 2 cups of water at room temperature
- 6 cups water, chilled
- Thaw turkey ahead of time if frozen. Remove giblets or neck sections and set them aside for stock if desired.
- Make the brine: Add the brining ingredients into a stock pot large enough to hold the turkey. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a separate pot.
- Add the boiling water to the stock pot and whisk until the salt is dissolved.
- Add the 6 cups of chilled water to the finished brining solution.
- Add turkey to the stock pot with brining solution and place in the refrigerator for 8-24 hours.
- After brining, remove the turkey from the solution,
rinse it under cool water and lay on a baking rack and allow it to drain.
- Pat any remaining moisture from the skin of the turkey prior to cooking.
You can replace the kosher salt with course sea salt if desired.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 19Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 7568mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 1g
Please note that the nutritional information provided are guidelines and may vary based on the brand of products used. For your specific nutritional goals use My Fitness Pal or Verywell Fit recipe calculators. All content within this site is not intended as medical diagnosis or treatment and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise.