Best Apple Cider Brined Turkey

Total Time
12hrs
Prep 12 hrs
Cook 0 mins

This will be the BEST roasted turkey you’ve had, hands down! I prefer this over deep fried turkey as it is about as moist and has much more flavor to it. I compliment this turkey by serving giblet gravy, sautéed herbed mushrooms and Apple Wine Stuffing. Before cooking the bird, I typically use a rub with olive oil or melted butter/margarine. I quarter an apple and stuff inside the cavity for cooking, tenting the bird until the last hour.

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan, combine cider, vinegar, salt, and sugar; stir to dissolve salt and sugar.
  2. Bring to a low boil over medium heat; Add in peppercorns, sage, garlic, thyme and shallots.
  3. On low heat simmer for 5 minutes; remove from heat, add ice to brine mixture and set aside to cool.
  4. Remove the turkey from the wrapping, remove neck and giblets (set aside for giblet gravy), rinse and prepare bird by patting down with paper towels.
  5. Make a collar of the top of cooking bags (helps keep bags open), and slip bird inside, stand it upright (legs pointing up), and unfold the top of the bag.
  6. Once the brine is cooled to room temperature or less, pour the cooled brine over the bird, and add an additional cold water until bird is submerged in liquid.
  7. Squeeze out as much air as possible and secure with a twist-tie.
  8. Place the turkey, breast side down, in a roasting pan and refrigerate for 24 hours, turning over every 6-8 hours.
  9. Just prior to roasting, remove the turkey from the brine; discard the bags, brine, and all cured herbs, spices, and oranges remaining in the bird.
  10. Rinse the turkey under cold water and pat dry with paper toweling.
  11. The turkey is now ready to be roasted. See cooking times for Brined turkey as it will be less than typical cooking time.
  12. Before cooking the bird, I typically use a rub with olive oil or melted butter/margarine. I quarter an apple and stuff inside the cavity for cooking, tenting the bird until the last hour. This will be the BEST roasted turkey you’ve had, hands down! I even prefer this over deep fried turkey as it is about as moist and has much more flavor to it. I compliment this turkey by serving giblet gravy, sautéed herbed mushrooms and Apple Wine Stuffing.
Most Helpful

Your brine is very similar to my own recipe, however this year I'm going to go with yours. I am positive it will be amazing. I wanted to make one comment though about your frying vs. roasting comment. Just for reference I have brined my birds for the past 15 years and I have always roasted them and with maybe one or two exceptions, they have always turned out moist and flat-out delicious. I have even won people over who professed to not like turkey...once they have tried my brined bird quickly sang a new tune. :-) Oh sorry I digress, anyway I usually roasted my turkey, I have my way of doing that so the breast meat is always moist. Anyway I started frying last year along with brining. Brining replaces the need to inject some store-bought marinade inside. I guess you could inject a butter marinade, but when I brine my birds (2) and then fried them - they were THE BEST!!! Granted it wouldn't win any "Healthy Turkey of the Year" awards, but surprisingly the turkey wasn't greasy. The meat wasn't oily, just pure juiciness! Seriously, I was amazed at how similar the turkey was to roasting, except the color was consistently (Beautiful caramel brown) and here weren't little hidden areas that were not browned. That process really sealed in the flavor from my brine effort and produced one of the best, if not THE best turkey I have ever made. Thanks for sharing your recipe. I had to give you 5 stars because I already know you have an amazing brine! Happy Thanksgiving!! :-)

Robert S. November 24, 2015

I use a VERY similar recipe each year and always have a great bird! I usally marindate for about 48hrs, turing the bird a few times throughout. Keeps a very appley flavor even after cooking and moist-licious!

SVELTE December 01, 2009