When cooking a Thanksgiving turkey, brine is essential for a juicy, flavorful bird. A turkey brine with oranges, rosemary, and spices will ensure a moist turkey.
My favorite kitchen memories from when I was a young girl are the Thanksgiving dinners I had with my family.
Thanksgiving was a huge celebration. I would help my mother prepare cranberry sauce, and pies to soak up my family's cooking wisdom.
My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving. We’ll cook for two days to prepare the annual feast. As a food blogger, the experience is heaven. So far, I’ve prepared two Thanksgiving feasts at our house. Now, I feel qualified to give you a few tips to make your Thanksgiving meal the best it can be. better:
What Is A Brine?
A brine is a salt and sugar solution to soak a turkey in overnight. Brine is used to keeping a turkey moist and juicy. A turkey brine includes bay leaves, herbs, peppercorns, garlic, and anything else that you think adds flavor. Brining a turkey is one of those things that’s easy to do and yet makes a major difference.
How To Brine A Turkey
- In a small saucepan, combine the apple cider vinegar, salt, sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, juniper berries, and bay leaves. Heat, stirring, until sugar and salt are dissolved. Cool to room temperature.
- Add the vinegar mixture to whatever you will be brining the turkey in. Include garlic, rosemary, orange slices, and one gallon of cold water, and then stir.Cover the turkey with the brine and add water
- Refrigerate overnight.
- Rinse the turkey and dry it after removing it from the brine. Season and cook the turkey.
What Should IBrine A Turkey In?
Turkeys need a large container. I use a large stock pot to place the turkey in, then place it in the refrigerator. Brine bags are ideal if you don’t have a pot big enough for a turkey.
Place the turkey in your brine bag. Put the bag in a rimmed dish so it doesn’t leak. If it is cool enough where you live and you have a solid cooler, like a Yeti, brine the turkey in it, but make sure it stays below 40°F.
How Long Should I Brine Turkey?
Overnight is ideal, but you can brine a turkey for two days. Any longer than that and you’ll be rolling the dice on your Thanksgiving dinner.
What If I'm Not Making A Whole Turkey?
If you're just making a turkey breast, you can half the recipe easily.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
One standard brine recipe only needs one orange.
A five-gallon yeti brine bucket can be purchased at most big box retailers.
Cranberry, apple, or orange juice will make a great brine.
Beer, vodka, or bourbon can be added to a turkey brine. Kentucky bourbon will give your turkey a unique taste.
Turkey Brine Conclusion
A turkey brine is the best way to ensure a moist turkey. It’s easy to cook a dry turkey, but when that happens, your Thanksgiving meal won’t be as sumptuous.
Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating in the comments!
Thanksgiving Turkey Brine
When it comes to cooking a Thanksgiving turkey, a brine is essential for a juicy, flavorful bird. This simple Thanksgiving turkey brine with oranges, rosemary, and a handful of spices will ensure your turkey is moist and delicious every time!
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: brine for 10-15 lb turkey 1x
- Category: Thanksgiving
- Method: stovetop
- Cuisine: Holiday
- 2 cups apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup kosher salt
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 tbsp black peppercorns
- ½ tbsp allspice berries
- ½ tbsp juniper berries
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2-3 sprigs fresh rosemary (you can also use thyme or sage)
- 1 orange, sliced
- About 2 gallons water
- In a small saucepan, combine vinegar, salt, sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, juniper berries, and bay leaves. Heat, stirring, until sugar and salt are dissolved. Cool to room temperature.
- Add mixture to a large pot, 5 gallon bucket, or brining bag. Add garlic, rosemary, orange slices and about 1 gallon of cold water. Stir. Add thawed turkey to the brine and add additional water to cover the turkey.
- Brine turkey overnight. Rinse turkey and pat dry after removing from the brine. Season and cook turkey as desired.
- You can usually buy juniper berries and allspice berries in the bulk spice section of your grocery store.
- If you're just making a turkey breast (like I show here) you can half the recipe easily.
- I brine the turkey overnight. You can probably get away with two days, but I really wouldn't brine any longer, or you risk your turkey being too salty.
Keywords: turkey brine, easy turkey brine, turkey brine with oranges and juniper berries