What Is a Good Brine for Turkey?


Quick Answer

Some good turkey brines are apple spice brine, smoked turkey brine and cranberry turkey brine. Some other good brines have alcohol bases, such as maple bourbon brined turkey legs or ale brined roasted turkey.

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What Is a Good Brine for Turkey?
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Full Answer

Make an apple spice or apple cider brine by combining 2 quarts of apple juice and 2 quarts of orange juice in a saucepan. Flavor with 2 cups of salt, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 10 whole cloves and 1 tablespoon of ground nutmeg. Simmer the brine until the sugar and salt dissolves, add 1 gallon of cold water, and pour over the top of the turkey. For the cider brine, simmer 1/2 gallon of apple cider with 3 tablespoons of canola oil, 1 head of garlic, 2 chopped onions and 1 wedged orange. After a few minutes, add 1/2 cup of kosher salt, 8 sage leaves and 8 thyme sprigs. Remove the brine from the stove, add 6 cups of water and ice, and pour over the turkey.

For an alcohol base, simmer 3/4 cup of bourbon, 2 1/2 pints of water, 3/4 cup of maple syrup, 2 tablespoons of mustard and 3/4 cups of salt. Mix in 1 tablespoon of black peppercorns, 2 teaspoons of red chili flakes, 1 teaspoon of dried thyme, 1 tablespoon of garlic and 3 cloves. Pour the brine in a resealable bag with turkey drum sticks, and allow to cure for one day before cooking.

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