How to Brine and Roast a Turkey

READY IN: 8hrs
Recipe by Aroostook

Turkey brine is not created equal...Different salt has different salinity. Use this info before using your favorite brine or use this simple one. Other turkey tips included...=)

Top Review by cleeo2

Thank you! This recipe is saved to my cookbook. I will always brine now.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Mix in a plastic container or stockpot until dissolved.
  2. Makes 1 gallon of brining solution.
  3. Salinity differs!
  4. Determine the amount of brine needed to cover a 12-14 pound whole turkey.
  5. Tips: Start brining method the day before you plan to cook the turkey.
  6. Use a fresh or completely thawed turkey.
  7. Wash the bird inside and out and remove the giblet bag and neck.
  8. (Save for Giblet Gravy) In a large stockpot, plastic tub or cooler mix up brine and stir until the salt and sugar are completely dissolved.
  9. Place the turkey in the brine solution, breast down.
  10. Cover and chill for 6 to 8 hours.
  11. If you brine overnight reduce the salt and sugar by half so the turkey does not retain too much salt.
  12. Remove the turkey from brine, rinse inside and out under cold running water.
  13. Pat dry with paper towels.
  14. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  15. Place turkey on shallow roasting pan.
  16. Tie legs together and tuck wings underneath the bird.
  17. Coat the skin with butter or olive oil.
  18. Cover the breast loosely with aluminum foil.
  19. Add 1 cup water to bottom of pan.
  20. Cooking time will vary depending on the size of the turkey.
  21. Check the wrapper to see how much the turkey weighs and determine the approximately.
  22. cooking time Roast the turkey until temperature in the thickest part of the thigh reaches 180 degrees or thigh juices run clear when pierced with a fork.
  23. During the last 1 to 1 1/2 hours of cooking time remove the aluminum foil from the breast and baste with pan juices to encourage browning.
  24. When the turkey is done, (180 F), allow it to set 20 minutes before carving to allow juices to saturate the meat evenly.
  25. Cooking time: A 12-pound turkey will take about 3 hours and 15 minutes to roast.
  26. Add 15 minutes for each additional pound.

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a