How To Brine A Turkey – An Herbed Brine Recipe

An herbed brine for a juicy and delicious turkey – every time


  • 4 Quarts of water
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 1&1/2 cups of salt
  • 1/2 cup of fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup of fresh rosemary
  • Bay leaves – a small handful
  • 4 tsp. dry mustard
  • 4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 4 tsp. ground (cayenne) red pepper
  • 4 tsp. whole peppercorn
  • 4 Quarts of cold water
  • Turkey oven roasting bag
  • Turkey
  • Aluminum Disposable Roasting Pan


  • In a large stock pot…add the first 10 ingredients
  • Bring to a boil, and stir to dissolve the salt & sugar
  • Add 4 more quarts of cold water to the brine – this will cool it off for you (you don’t want to cook your turkey in a hot bath of water)
  • Let the water mixture cool off until it is cool to the touch – let it cool for about 20 minutes
  • Transfer your brine to whatever you’ll use to pour the brine with
  • *I used a nice big bowl with a spout to transfer the brine into the roasting bag. A pitcher would have worked well, also
  • Take out any gizzards and neck from the turkey cavities
  • Place your turkey inside the roasting bag, and place the bagged turkey it in the disposable roasting pan.
  • *I find the pan to be very helpful in catching splashed water, and a great container for rinsing the turkey
  • Seal the bag, and place the turkey – still in the disposable container – into the refrigerator
  • You will want to let the turkey marinate in the brine for several hours, or overnight – up to 24 hours
  • Occasionally flip the bird over so everything is exposed to the brine
  • When you are ready to cook the turkey empty the bag of juices, and thoroughly rinse the turkey – inside, and out – I know, it seams odd to rinse off all of the spices, and seasonings, but you’ll want to really give it a thorough rinsing. Trust me…you don’t want a bird that’s too salty
  • Pat it dry, and place it in your roasting pan…breast side up
  • Rub olive oil all over the turkey – top, and bottom
  • You can shake a little ground pepper over the turkey for some added flavor
  • Roast it according to this turkey cooking chart  
  • Or, if you are using a printable, make sure your turkey is registering 165 degrees when your thermometer is inserted into the thickest part of the breast or thigh