Foolproof Thanksgiving Turkey Recipe

Thanksgiving Turkey Recipe

Follow these simple instructions for the most succulent Thanksgiving turkey you’ve ever had! It’s juicy, flavorful, and a foolproof recipe you’ll make year after year.


  • 1 (15 pound) fresh or completely thawed turkey

For the Dry Brine

  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt (do not substitute fine salt here)
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme

For Roasting the Turkey

  • 3 carrots, chopped into large pieces, divided
  • 3 celery stalk, cut into pieces, divided
  • 6 whole, peeled garlic cloves, divided
  • 1 large onion, cut into large chunks
  • 3 sprigs each of fresh rosemary, sage, and thyme
  • 1 apple, cut into wedges
  • 1 orange, cut into wedges
  • 1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup), sliced
  • 5 cups chicken stock, divided


For the Dry Brine (1-3 days before ready to cook the turkey)

  1. Mix the dry brine ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside
  2. From the turkey, remove the giblets and neck from inside the cavity and save for another use. Remove or discard any plastic or metal cages or pop-up thermometers.
  3. Pat the turkey dry with paper towels and set on a rimmed baking sheet or roasting pan.
  4. Sprinkle the brine mixture all over the turkey on the inside and outside.
  5. Refrigerate for 1-3 days, uncovered.

To Roast the Turkey

  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
  2. To the bottom of a large roasting pan, add one of the chopped carrots, one of the cut celery stalks, 2 of the garlic cloves, the onion, and the sage, rosemary and thyme.
  3. Place the turkey on top of the vegetables/herbs. Add the rest of the carrots, celery, and garlic, along with the apple and orange wedges into the center of the turkey.  Bind the legs with kitchen twine. Place the slices of butter all around the outside of the bird; it will stick.
  4. Roast turkey in the preheated oven for 45 minutes. Pour half of the chicken stock over the turkey. Roast another 45 minutes, then pour the rest of the chicken stock over the turkey. Roast another 45 minutes, then baste with the pan juices. Roast another 45 minutes, and baste again. Continue to cook until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.  If the skin ever starts to get too brown, cover loosely with foil. Remove from oven and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes before carving. Enjoy!


You can use the pan juices and vegetables to make a simple gravy. Discard the herbs, and puree 1 cup of the vegetables in a blender. Add three cups of pan juice. If it needs to be thicker, puree more vegetables. For a smooth gravy, strain through a fine-mesh sieve.