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Alton Brown Turkey Brine and Good Eats Roast Turkey image

Alton Brown's turkey brine recipe from Good Eats will give you a flavorful Thanksgiving turkey with juicy white and dark meat.

Provided by Alton Brown

Categories     Thanksgiving     Turkey     Poultry     Christmas     Fall     Christmas Eve     Winter

Yield At least 10-12 servings

Number Of Ingredients 17

For Turkey Brine
One 14-16-pound frozen natural, young turkey
1 gallon vegetable broth (homemade or canned)
1 cup kosher salt
½ cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1½ teaspoons allspice berries
1½ tablespoons candied ginger, chopped
1 gallon H2O, iced
For Roasting
1 red apple, quartered
½ onion, quartered
1 stick cinnamon
1 cup H20
4 sprigs rosemary
6 sage leaves
Canola oil


  • Two to three days before roasting, thaw the turkey in the refrigerator or in a cooler kept at 38° F, tops.
  • To make the turkey brine: Combine the broth, salt, sugar, peppercorns, allspice, and finger in a large stockpot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir until the salt and sugar dissolve. Remove from the heat. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate the brine.
  • The eve before roasting, combine the brine and the iced water in a cooler. Place the thawed turkey (guts, neck, and whatnot removed) breast side down in the brine. Seal up the cooler and use it as an ottoman. Target bring time: 12 hours; flip the bird once about halfway through.
  • On roasting day: Heat the oven to 500°F. Remove the bird from the brine and rinse inside and out. Discard brine.
  • Place the bird on a roasting rack and place inside a roasting pan. Pat the bird dry (inside and out) with paper towels.
  • Combine the apple, onion, cinnamon, and water in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 5 minutes. Add to the turkey's cavity, along with the rosemary and sage. Truss, if you like.
  • Lightly coat the bird with canola oil. Roast the bird on the lowest rack of the oven for 30 minutes.
  • Insert a probe thermometer into the thickest part of the breast and reduce the oven temperature to 350°F.
  • Roast until the thermometer registers 155°F, about 2½ hours.
  • Remove from the oven, cover closely with aluminum foil, and let rest for a least 15 minutes before carving.

sajib saha
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I highly recommend this recipe. It's easy to follow and the results are amazing.

Mbuso Gumede
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This is the best turkey recipe ever!

Yassmin Essam
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I'm so glad I found this recipe. It's the perfect way to cook a turkey.

Opeyemi Fridaws
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This recipe is a keeper! I'll definitely be using it again next year.

Javed Hussain
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I've tried many turkey recipes over the years, but this one is by far my favorite. The brine makes all the difference.

Maria Mokhonwana
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This is a great recipe for a special occasion. The turkey is always a hit with my guests.

Ajewole Pelumi
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I love this recipe! The turkey is always so moist and flavorful.

Isai Suriano
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This was my first time brining a turkey and it was so easy! The brine really made a difference in the flavor and moistness of the turkey.

Ali khan Mehmoodkhail
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I've been using this recipe for years and it never disappoints. The turkey always comes out juicy and delicious.

Djfkjf Jxjfid
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This is the best turkey recipe I've ever tried! The brine made the turkey so moist and flavorful, and the roasting instructions were perfect. My family and friends raved about it.