If you’ve ever bitten into a dry, bland turkey, then you know how disappointing it can be especially on a holiday. If you are the one who cooked it, it can even be a little embarrassing. This roasted turkey with citrus apple cider vinegar brine recipe is tried and true. It will make your roasted turkey moist, flavorful and simply delicious!
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The aroma of the apple cider may be a bit overwhelming but, that will not translate in the taste of the bird. When you pull your turkey out of the oven when it’s done roasting, it will be moist, juicy and flavorful! This turkey will be tender and delicious.
You will not regret going through a little extra effort to brine the turkey. Once you taste how good this turkey is, you’ll brine it every year and wonder how you ever got by without brine.
I took out my electric knife to carve this turkey and didn’t even need it. The meat fell off the bones…even the turkey breast! This meat was so tender, I didn’t need to cut it at all! How easy is that? Just what a hostess needs…easy!
How to Make Roasted Turkey with Citrus Apple Cider Vinegar Brine
*The full recipe is at the bottom of this post.
First, in a large stock pot, combine apple cider, water, kosher salt, some bay leaves, fresh sage, thyme, and rosemary along with peppercorns, quartered oranges and lemons.
Then, bring contents to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes on low heat. Let cool completely before adding to turkey.
Next, put the cooled brine into a brine bag big enough to hold the size turkey you have. If you don’t have a brine bag, use a clean cooler or a container that is deep enough to hold the turkey with the brine covering the turkey. Let the turkey sit in the brine 12-16 hours (8 hrs at the very least.)
Next, prep the bird. Remove the turkey neck and giblets bag from the turkey cavity.
Then, rinse the turkey under cold water. Add two cups of water to the bottom of a large roasting pan that has a lid.
Then, add the turkey to the pan, breast side up. With about 8 inches of twine, tie the legs together as pictured. Fold the turkey wings under the turkey. Rub softened butter on the skin of the turkey. Season the turkey with freshly cracked pepper. If your turkey didn’t come with a thermometer, insert a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the breast.
Last, bake the turkey at 325F for about 2.5-3 hrs if the turkey is un-stuffed (a stuffed bird will take longer ). The internal temperature of the turkey should reach 165F in the breast area.
When I serve my moist, flavorful roasted turkey, I always make sure I serve my Lemon Ginger Cranberry Relish along with it. It compliments the turkey perfectly!
When you want a foolproof roasted turkey recipe that you know will be moist, flavorful and delicious, this easy turkey brine recipe will become your go to recipe! Don’t risk a dry, bland turkey, especially on Thanksgiving or Christmas.
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- *Makes enough brine for a 20 lb turkey
- 12-16 cups of apple cider
- 1 gallon of water
- 1 1/4 cups of Kosher salt
- 2 oranges quartered
- 1 lemon quartered
- 9 cloves of fresh garlic
- 6 bay leaves
- 4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
- 4 springs of fresh thyme
- 3 springs of fresh sage
- 3 tbsp fresh peppercorns
Place all ingredients into a large stock pot. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer for 20 min on low heat.
Let the brine cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until ready to place the turkey in it.
Place the raw, defrosted turkey into a brine bag. Pour cooled brine over turkey, tie the bag and place in a roasting pan and place in your refrigerator for 8-12 hours.