I talk A LOT of smack on turkey because I think Thanksgiving is really all about the sides. Although I still love my sides, this Herb Butter Roasted Turkey is something I will definitely look forward to each year. There’s a couple tips in my recipe, like brining the turkey and covering it with a butter soaked cheesecloth, that make it just perfect. Rest assured, you’ll never need another turkey recipe ever again.
And also, the gravy is INSANE.
Herb Butter Thanksgiving Turkey
- 12-14 lb turkey giblets and neck removed
- Kosher salt (like Diamond Crystal- do not use fine table salt like
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 sticks butter at room temperature
- Fresh rosemary sage, thyme and parsley
- 1 lemon cut into wedges
- 6 cloves garlic smashed
- 1 yellow onion cut into fourths
- 4 cups chicken broth
For the gravy:
- 4 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp chopped herbs I used rosemary, sage and thyme
- 5 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 4 cups turkey drippings or chicken broth
- Salt & pepper to taste
First, dry brine your turkey by coating it with salt. This helps dry out the turkey so the skin gets nice and crispy! The rule of thumb is to use about 1/2 tsp per pound of turkey. Seal it in a plastic bag and refrigerate for 24-72 hours, turning it over every 12 hours.
When you’re ready to roast, remove the turkey from the bag, pat it dry with paper towels and let it sit out for 1-2 hours to come to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees and move the rack to the lower 1/3 of the oven.
Combine 1 1/2 sticks of butter with 1 tsp black pepper and 1 tbsp each of the rosemary, thyme, sage and parsley. Rub the herb butter all over the turkey, getting under the skin as needed. Fill the cavity with the onion, garlic, lemons and a few springs of the herbs. Place the turkey in the roasting rack and pour 4 cups of chicken broth in.
Optional (but so helpful for a juicy turkey), soak enough cheesecloth to double line the turkey in warm water, ring dry, then soak in the remaining melted butter. Cover the turkey with the cheesecloth.
Roast at 450 for 30-40 minutes then reduce the heat to 350 and cook for an additional 1 1/2-2 hours until the thickest part is 160 degrees. I basted it 4 times as it cooked. Let it cool for 30 minutes before carving.
For the gravy, strain the drippings and set aside.
Add butter to a skillet and turn the heat to medium. Once the butter melts, add the herbs and let it simmer for about 30 seconds then whisk in the flour.
Once combined, add in the white wine and continue whisking until the alcohol cooks out. Make sure the alcohol has burned off completely before adding the drippings.
Pour in drippings while continuing to whisk. Bring to a simmer to thicken for 5-6 minutes. Add salt & pepper to taste.