September 26, 2017

Sugar And Spice Dry-Brined Roast Turkey

Recipe: Kristen Eppich

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 11⁄2 days including brining time

This turkey recipe needs 14 hours in your fridge. That means juggling some fridge space, I know — but trust me, it’s worth it. I recommend leaving the brine on overnight, rinsing the turkey first thing in the morning, then returning it to the fridge to firm up the skin for 6 more hours or until you’re ready to roast it.


Dry Brine

  • 1⁄2 cup kosher salt
  • 1⁄4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp orange zest
  • 2 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground fennel seed
  • 1 tsp dried chili flakes


  • 1 15-lb. turkey, fresh or fully thawed frozen
  • 1⁄4 cup olive oil
  • 2 garlic heads, halved horizontally
  • 1 lb. baby carrots, peeled
  • 2 small red onions, cut into quarters


Yield: Serves 8

Mix Dry Brine

  1. Combine dry brine ingredients in a medium bowl.

Brine Turkey And Refrigerate

  1. Clean turkey, removing neck and giblets (discard giblets), and pat very dry with paper towels. Place into pan that will fit in your fridge.
  2. Sprinkle dry brine all over turkey, gently patting on as needed to help brine adhere. Use as much of brine mixture as possible, sprinkling some into turkey’s cavity as well. Refrigerate uncovered for 6 hours or overnight.

Rinse Turkey And Refrigerate

  1. Remove turkey from fridge. Rinse under cold water thoroughly removing all brine mix. Pat dry and return to pan. Refrigerate uncovered overnight to dry skin.

Roast Turkey

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Arrange a rack inside a large roasting pan.
  2. Remove turkey from fridge and let rest 1 hour to take off chill. Rub oil all over bird, gently lifting skin and pushing oil between skin and flesh wherever possible. Tie legs together and lift onto rack, breast side up. Slip neck into bottom of pan.
  3. Roast turkey 30 minutes. Reduce temperature to 325°F and continue cooking, basting every 30 minutes and rotating pan to ensure even browning, 2 more hours.
  4. Add vegetables to roasting pan, turning in turkey juices. Continue cooking 45 more minutes or until turkey reaches temperature of 165°F at thickest point. Start checking temperature of bird after 2 1⁄2 hours of cooking to prevent overcooking. If any part of bird browns too early, tent it loosely with foil.
  5. When temperature is reached, transfer turkey and vegetables to platter and tent turkey loosely with foil. Allow to rest at least 30 minutes before slicing. Reserve roasting pan and contents to make gravy.
Author: Kristen Eppich

Stacey Brandford


House & Home October 2016