Brined Thanksgiving Turkey

A delightful sweet, savory, and well-balanced turkey cooked to perfection. But it takes a little extra time and effort!



  1. Place two (of the four) quarts of water in stockpot or Dutch oven.
  2. Add all other ingredients except for the maple extract.
  3. Bring to a boil and stir to combine.
  4. Turn off the burner, remove from heat.
  5. Add maple extract and remaining two quarts of water.
  6. Break down the bird.
  7. Brine turkey breast meat for 48 hours and dark meat for 24 hours.
  8. Remove from brine, dry meat and allow to rest one hour.
  9. Preheat oven to 425F.
  10. Heat up an oven-safe skillet (cast iron preferred) over medium-high heat with a tablespoon of oil.
  11. Place breast portion skin-side down in the skillet and place in the oven. Cook for 30 minutes.
  12. Prepare dry, unsalted stuffing in a roasting pan.
  13. Remove breast from oven, flip skin-side up onto the stuffing.  Place legs on stuffing and push stuffing beneath the bird so no stuffing is exposed. Brush legs with vegetable oil, salt lightly.
  14. Roast in oven for 30 minute more.
  15. Reduce oven temp to 350F and cook an additional 40 minutes. Begin checking internal temp of the turkey.
  16. Cooking is complete when the internal temp reaches 165F.
  17. Rest turkey on cutting board 30 minutes before carving.