Herb Brined Turkey

Kitchen Tested
  • Yield 30 servings
  • Prep 15 mins
  • Cook 300 mins

Brining, or soaking, the turkey in a salt-sugar solution infuses moisture and flavor into the bird.


This is enough brine for a large turkey. For a smaller one (8- to 12-pounds), make half the brine.


3 gallons hot water
3 pounds kosher salt
2 pounds sugar
1/4 cup dried basil
1/4 cup dried oregano
14 pounds ice
15 pounds turkey, fresh or frozen, thawed
Vegetable oil


  1. Combine hot water and salt in a clean 12- to 15-gallon cooler. Stir until salt dissolves.
  2. Add sugar, basil and oregano; stir until sugar dissolves. Add ice and stir.
  3. Place turkey in brine and cover with cooler lid. Soak overnight or up to 18 hours.
  4. Preheat oven to 350F.
  5. To prepare the turkey, remove from brine and pat dry. Rub with vegetable oil. Place on a roasting rack and roast until thigh registers 160F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove turkey from oven and let rest 15 minutes before slicing.

Recipe by Chef Doug Hosford.



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