Buttermilk Brined Turkey

Culinary Setting
Home
Meal Type
Main Course, Entrée
Difficulty
Easy
Time
2 HR

About this Dish

Perfectly crispy, golden brown skin and tender, flavorful turkey are what you get with this easy buttermilk brine. We love this recipe because it’s so simple – just a few ingredients yield big taste! Try spatchcocking your turkey for a quicker, more even cook on the grill. Your whole crew will be gobblin’ for seconds of this delicious turkey.

Servings
10
Cuisine
Southern
Cooking Style
Bake, Deep Fry, Grill
Product
Whole
Dish Type
Whole Bird

Ingredients

2 qt cold water

1/2 c kosher salt

1 tbsp black pepper

1 large bay leaf

2 tbsp fresh rosemary

1 small fresh garlic clove, lightly smashed

12-14 lb whole turkey, fresh or thawed if frozen

4 qt cold buttermilk

Directions

Savory Brine Mixture

Combine all ingredients in a large (3+ qt) saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.

Let the mixture cool completely before proceeding.

Brining Turkey

Remove giblets and neck from the turkey cavities.

In a large container, such as a seal-able brine bag or 5-gallon food-safe grade bucket with lid, add cold Savory Brine Mixture and buttermilk. Stir well. Add turkey to the brine and submerge it. If using a bucket, place an ice-filled bowl on top of the turkey to keep the turkey submerged.

Brine turkey no longer than 24 hours, remembering to keep it under 40 degrees F for the entire brining time.

Remove turkey from brine and pat dry with a paper towel. Discard brine.

Cooking Methods

For grilling: Prepare grill for indirect medium-high heat. Place turkey on grill and cook for 1-1/2-2 hours or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. The outside should be crisp and golden brown. Remove turkey from the roasting pan and let set for 15-20 minutes before carving.

For oven roasting: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Place turkey on a V-shaped rack in a 2-inch roasting pan and roast about 3-1/2 to 3-3/4 hours or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. The outside should be crisp and golden brown. Remove turkey from the roasting pan and let set for 15-20 minutes before carving.

Optional: Feel free to add your favorite glaze or baste your turkey during the cooking process. Either way, you'll have a tender, juicy turkey.