Prep 35 mins
Cook 3 hrs
I created this recipe 3 years ago when I decided to brine a turkey for the first time. I wasn't happy with any of the recipes I found online. Now I would never fix a turkey any other way. It infuses flavor throughout the bird. I make this brine the day before I need it so it has time to cool in the refrigerator. Brining time will depend on the size of your turkey or chicken. We usually do an 18 lb. bird & I brine it for 3 days. This is equally good for birds roasted in the oven or smoked on the grill. The number of servings and cooking time will depend on the size bird you are cooking. I just had to put something in here to post.
- 4 cups water, plus enough to cover bird
- 1 1⁄2 cups kosher salt
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 head of garlic, peeled & smashed
- 1 onion, coarsely chopped
- 3 bay leaves, broken
- 1 teaspoon ground thyme
- 1 teaspoon peppercorn
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
- Pour 4 cups of water into a large saucespan. Add all other ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring to dissolve the brown sugar and kosher salt. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Pour into a covered container and refrigerate overnight.
- When ready to brine the bird, pour brine solution with herbs & spices over the bird. Add enough cold water to cover. Keep refrigerated or in a cool place.
- When ready to prepare bird, rinse well under cold water. Dry with paper towels. For a crisper skin, allow bird to dry in refigerator for 24 hours before roasting.