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Easy & Juicy Whole Roasted Turkey
Juicy and tender!!

Easy & Juicy Whole Roasted Turkey

Ok ok I heard you sheesh! Some of you RAVED about the herb roasted turkey recipe I put up a few years ago and some of you said “uhhh Monique I love you and everything but that turkey is just toooooo much work with all that flipping and basting!”  lol. So I thought it was time that I put up a super easy, moist, juicy, flavorful turkey for beginners or for those who just want something a bit more simple.

The meat on this turkey is so tender and the skin bakes up tight, flavorful, dry and crisp, just they way I like it! I can’t handle turkey with soggy, flabby, chewy skin. Ick!

Easy Juicy whole roasted turkey recipe

Juicy and tender!!

I adore this easy & juicy whole roasted turkey recipe for several reasons.

1.) The brine is super simple yet produces SUPERB results! Don’t you dare skip the brine!!  It’s gonna make that turkey stupid juicy and  it’s gonna allow you some wiggle room in case you accidentally overcook the turkey. Nobody likes a dry turkey!

2.) The seasonings are very simple yet gives it such a nice flavor that goes well with ALL those thanksgiving fixings and makes the best gravy ever!! Don’t you DARE skip the butter!! I know I’m being kinda bossy and I really don’t mean to be. It’s just that I want you too experience the juicy piece of turkey perfection that I just ate a few minutes ago.

3.) It’s so easy.  Brine. Season. Bake. No flipping. No basting. There, you have NO excuses to not make a turkey this Thanksgiving. None!

This recipe is for a 12-16 pound turkey. You’ll need to adjust the cooking time if you’re using a smaller or larger turkey. The rule of thumb is 15 minutes per pound of turkey (cooking on 325) or when a themometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 180 degrees F (although some folks say 165 is safe).

Food Network has this cute little turkey calculator that does all the work for you if you just put in the the size of your turkey. It will even tell you when you need to put the turkey into the oven based on when you want to eat dinner and also how big of a turkey you’ll need to feed X amount of people. So handy. You can check it out right here.

I’ve made this turkey before and roasted it breast side down and BAAAAABY it was oozing juices when I cut into the breast! It’s still crazy juicy (and much prettier) when cooked breast side up though and so for this video I decided to do it breast side up for a prettier presentation.

Watch me make the easiest, juicy whole roasted turkey from start to finish!

4.9 from 9 reviews

Easy & Juicy Whole Turkey Recipe
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: whole turkey
Serves: 16
Ingredients
  • 16 lb turkey, thawed, inside packets removed
  • BRINE
  • 1 gallon buttermilk
  • 8 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoon poultry seasoning.
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • INSIDE CAVITY
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 apple
  • 1 orange
  • SEASONED BUTTER
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon cajun seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • ½ teaspoon garlic flakes
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
Instructions
  1. Combine the brine ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. Line a large bowl, pot or bucket with an oven roasting bag.
  3. Place the turkey into the bag and pour in the brine.
  4. Tie the bag, making sure all the air is out and the buttermilk brine is completely surrounding the turkey.
  5. Refrigerate overnight.
  6. Preheat oven to 325.
  7. Rinse the brine off completely.
  8. Dry the turkey with paper towels until completely dry.
  9. Combine the salt and pepper and rub inside of the turkey cavity.
  10. Stuff the cavity with an apple and orange.
  11. Combine all of the seasoned butter ingredients.
  12. Brush this butter mixture generously onto the turkey, until covered with butter. Reserve some of the butter if desired.
  13. Place turkey in a roasting pan, breast side up.
  14. Place on the lower rack in the oven and bake uncovered for 3 hours and 45 minutes to 4 hours.
  15. Cover with foil for the last 45 minutes (if you are content with the browning) and also remove the apple and orange at this point.
  16. Remove from oven when done.
  17. Let rest for 20 minutes.
  18. Enjoy!
Notes
~TIPS~ Feel free to stuff the turkey with fresh herbs, onions, garlic, etc. Don’t brine past 24 hours. Don’t overcook!! Use that thermometer AND cooking guide! (oven tempts. can vary)

 

 

 

25 comments

  1. I made this for Thanksgiving and I am making it again for Christmas, it was that Good! I never knew of anyone who brine their turkey so this was a first for me. It was juicy from the dark meat to the white meat even my picky husband was amazed. One tip after you have brine your turkey and rinsed and dried it and let it sit in the fridge for a few hours to dry some more, when you cook it the skin will be extra crispy. I did not use any butter on the skin. This Buttermilk Brine is the only way to roast turkey and no, your turkey will not taste like buttermilk it will be moist and flavorful. Thanks Diva for this recipe I wish I could give you more stars. Blessings

  2. I loveeeee this….But can i use this recipe with chicken instead of Turkey?

  3. Hello,
    Is it possible to use the BRINE on whole chickens or Cornish hens??

  4. The butter seasoning was the perfect touch for the turkey.

  5. This recipe made my turkey a hands down hit! It was so tender and juicy!!!!

  6. I only have one word for you….DIVA!!!

  7. I love your website and have liked your page on FB, I will be using your recipes to set my very first thanksgiving dinner off right!!!! I made your smoked cheddar mac n cheese recipe before and people loved it!!!!! So….I am trusting you with my Turkey Day! LOL I have a question and I know you are busy so I may just have to figure this out….may be a stupid question, but I am supposed to refrigerate the turkey once inside the buttermilk brine….right??? and would it hurt for me to use injectables for extra flavor??

  8. Can I use this seasoning preparation on fry turkey

  9. Beautiful Testimony

    Hello Monique,

    This year I decided to give my mother a break and cook Thanksgiving dinner. However, to keep me from overwhelming myself, how many days in advance can I start preparing dinner without it loosing its freshness. I was thinking maybe two days in advance, will I be pushing my luck?

  10. Loved this recipe!!! Made it for Christmas. It was moist and flavorful. I didn’t have enough buttermilk to cover entire turkey so i turned it every few hours even in the middle of the night and swirled the brine so the spices wouldn’t settle on the bottom. I also used creole sesoning instead of cajun. I bought both but it just so happened my $1 creole smelled better. I also butterflied the turkey and cooked in an electric roaster(these are very cheap, maybe $30) at 350 degrees for only one hour and a half. But it was your recipe that made it taste so dang gon good. Thanks for sharing your talent. I can’t wait to try something else on your site.

  11. This recipe was awesome. This was my first turkey ever….I had tried your deviled eggs and Macaroni and cheese before with great results but meat is not my strength. It is so tender and delicious, thank you!

  12. OMG, I tried this recipe and it was a hit. It was my first Turkey and I was nervous because I had family traveling long distance and I wanted to make an impression. Great reviews, no dry turkey. I followed the recipe exactly, it was simple and easy and EVERYONE loved it! Thanks Diva, I’ve been a fan and will continue to support you!!!

  13. This recipe was so simple. My turkey turned out so moist & flavorful & made my thanksgiving guest rant & rave the whole night. I recommend this for first time cooks. This was my first turkey & I came out looking like a novice. Thanks diva!

  14. I used your recipe this year and I am so glad I did. I am positive that brining the turkey made a difference. It has been a few days since Thanksgiving and the Turkey is still moist!

  15. Great flavor! will do again!!!!

  16. I’m doing your old one, because I just found this one and I already did your old brine !! (from 2009)

  17. I was wondering if you put the apple & orange inside of the turkey whole or if you cut them up? I tried your smoky baked mac recipe a week or so ago & loved it! Looking forward to the outcome of my turkey!

  18. I’m trying the recipe for the first time & realized I don’t have enough buttermilk. Will using less than what you indicate in the recipe really affect the moisture you rave about very much?

  19. Hi, Nov. 21, 2012 – starting on my TDay dinner, starting with your Easy Turkey, just did the brine. Houston we may have a problem-just took turkey out of freezer yesterday, a little chilly-never have brined a turkey, so far, so easy. WE WILL NOT BE GOING TO GOLDEN CORRAL…keep you posted

  20. Hi Monique!
    New to you site and I’m so glad I found it! The food looks delish!!!! I’m making my first turkey tomorrow and was a little scared until I found this recipe….Super easy! Thank you so much! One question..can you taste the apple and orange?

  21. wondering if there was a reason you didn’t put butter mix under the skin this year?

  22. Hi Monique!! Thanks for the updated version, however, I have a question. On the original recipe, you were using a 10lb turkey and said to double the ingredients (if using a larger bird), now here, you’re using a 16lb turkey and have the same amount of ingredients. I just want to be sure to use the proper amounts and not over do it when I try this. What should I do for a 19lb turkey. THANKS so much!!

  23. So I’m big on Thanksgiving. Scratch that, I’m big on Thanksgiving turkey. I think I’ll try your recipe this year: I love your blog and it just sounds so. Crackin. Good. And because I’m me I look all over the place for the best dishes and recipes and I think you might like this cranberry sauce comparison I got my hands on. Certainly helps if you don’t have time to make your own: http://www.pressdisplay.com/pressdisplay/showlink.aspx?bookmarkid=IQ8N3FNFAXB5&preview=article&linkid=7ad9729b-065f-40fa-af87-599178787c9d&pdaffid=ZVFwBG5jk4Kvl9OaBJc5%2bg%3d%3d

  24. Love your recipes! This is my Thanksgiving go-to site! I had great luck with your herb roasted turkey two years ago. I don’t think I flipped it halfway through then. Last year the turkey was good but I think i let the turkey dry out too much. I basted ever 30-45 minutes and flipped halfway through, but it ended up with undercooked dark meat and overcooked white. I’m sticking with your buttermilk brine, but I don’t think I’ll baste or flip this year except to broil the skin at the very end.

  25. Thank you so much Diva! I was nerves about hosting my 1st thanksgiving dinner, I was checking your blog everyday for new recipes lbvs but thanx to you I cant wait to get in that kitchen. Im using a ton of your recipes.

    Happy Turkey Day to You and your

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