Brined Roast Turkey

5 from 1 reviews


  • 1 (14-16) lbs turkey


  • 1 gallon vegetable broth
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 3 dry bay leaves
  • 1 gallon heavily iced water
  • 1 head garlic, cloves smashed

Aromatic Stuffing:

  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 head garlic
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • thyme, parsley
  • 12 cups broth, chicken or vegetable


  1. Combine the vegetable broth, salt, sugar, bay leaves and peppercorns in a large pot. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring until the salt and sugar dissolves. You can do this in advance, otherwise, cool.
  2. You can also combine a small portion of the broth with the salt, sugar, bay leaves and peppercorns and heat in a pot until the salt ans sugar dissolve. Use at least 2-3 cups of the broth, or the salt won’t dissolve.
  3. To make homemade vegetable broth, cook leeks, onion, garlic, bay leaf, peppercorns, herbs (parsley, thyme), kale, zucchini, cauliflower, season with salt and cook for about 45 minutes. Strain and cool.
  4. Combine all the brine ingredients in a big bucket or cooler.
  5. Submerge the turkey in the brine. I put my container inside a large cooler and place all around it and brine it overnight. You want the turkey to brine for at least 8 hours, and up to 16 hours.
  6. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.
  7. Place a v-shaped rack inside a roasting pan. Line the roasting pan with aluminum foil. Line the rack with aluminum foil too and poke it all over with a wooden skewer. Spray the aluminum foil over the rack with oil, so that the turkey won’t stick to it.
  8. Discard the brine and pat the turkey dry with paper towels.
  9. Cut the orange, lemon and onion into sections. Place the orange, lemon, onion, garlic cloves and herbs inside the cavity of the bird.
  10. Tie the legs of the bird together with kitchen twine. Tuck the wings behind the back of the turkey.
  11. Season the turkey with freshly ground black pepper on both sides.
  12. Place the turkey breast side down and bake at 500 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Turn over and bake for another 20-25 minutes breast side up.
  13. Reduce temperature to 350 and continue roasting until the thickest part of the thigh registers 170-175 degrees. It will take approximately 2 1/2 hour total.
  14. Let the turkey rest at room temperature for at least half an hour before carving it.