Monday, December 6, 2021


Well, at the least the way WE do it, ha.  And best of all, it's done in less than 90 minutes (for a 13 1/2 lb).  Several of you said you were going to try it and since we scored a clearance bird the other day, this time we took detailed step by step pictures to share.
Turkey on a rack

First thing we do is take a baking sheet and cover it with heavy duty foil.  Then we have a rack that fits over it (sitting on the edges) and because the turkey is heavy, we put a silicone rack under that in the middle to keep the turkey from bending it down.

Drying a turkey

Next, we dry it off.  All the nooks and crannies, between the leg crevices and wings etc.  If there is water/moisture on it, the duck fat (or oil) won't stick.

Tucking in the turkey wings

Then we flip it over and tuck the wings in like this so the tips won't burn.

Duck fat on turkey

We turn it back upright, breast side up, and start coating it all over with duck fat.  Of course, this is the step where you can use anything you prefer, olive oil, vegetable oil, etc, but duck fat is amazing.  Rub it all over and under the skin as much as possible.

Seasoning the turkey

Next we put the seasoning on.  This is another step where you can use whatever seasoning you prefer, as long as it has some salt in it.  The salt helps the brining process.  We just rub it all over and under the skin, of course it sticks really well with the oil.  Our homemade rub is a blend of salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder, sage etc.  We'll have to commit that to paper, ha.

Dry brining a turkey in the refrigerator

Then we put the whole thing in the refrigerator.  Thankfully, our sheet pan fits just right and we move some stuff around so there is room.  We will leave it this way for two days.  This is right after we put it in.

*By the way, the binder clip was to hold the skin together because it had separated and we wanted it to stay together to protect the breast while it dry brines.  We will remove prior to baking.

24 hours dry brining a turkey

This is 24 hours later.  If you look at the previous picture, it has changed.  It's a little less "shiny" and the skin is tightening up.

48 hours dry brining a turkey

And this is 48 hours later.  The dark part is where the skin has tightened up and kind of sealed up against the meat.  This locks the fat and seasoning under the skin.  We do this for 36 to 48 hours in the fridge of course.

Turkey before baking

About an hour before cooking, we take it out and let it come to room temperature.  For us, what we like to do now instead of rubbing it down again with oil, is use melted butter.  We use salted butter so that adds a bit more seasoning but here again, it's flexible.  If you don't want to use butter, use more of what you used the first time.  You can also season it a bit more if you feel it needs it or just leave the seasoning alone.

Here's where we veer off from the norm.  We cook it at a high temperature, 425 degrees.  We keep the turkey somewhat safe from burning because we take out all the racks except the very bottom and place it on that one.  This keeps it from being too close to the top element and all of the rising heat.  You still have to watch it.  At this point though, you could roast it just as you normally do your own

This one was 13 1/2 pounds and so we put in for 90 minutes.  At 45 minutes (the halfway point), we turned the sheet pan around so both sides are even in color.  Then we started checking it and it was only another 20 or 25 minutes or so when the pop up timer came up and we temped it and it was done.  Start checking yours every few minutes around the 1 hour mark.  There is carry over cooking of course if you tent it with foil after you take it out.  Just don't overcook it.


Roasted turkey

Here it is.  How beautiful is that?  One comment on the last one we made said it was a magazine worthy bird.  We think this one's a good looking bird this time too.

Juicy turkey

We wanted to show this picture to hopefully capture how juicy it is inside.  These are not injected by us and we always try to get the non solution filled turkeys.  The juices just run out when we cut/tear into it.

This bird gave us five bags of meat (after we ate some for dinner of course).  Now we have a total of eleven bags of cooked turkey meat off the bone, vacuum sealed, in the freezer waiting for future meals.


  1. I had the basic idea, but Thank You for the step by step instructions.
    Looks delicious; cookbook picture perfect

  2. Your silicone rack looks round. You mind showing a picture of it please.

    1. Will do, we have two round ones and two kind of rectangle ones. Probably could have used the rectangle ones but I'll get a pic for you.

  3. Thanks. I must try this though wonder how it will fit in refrigerator with all the rest of the stuff in there.

    1. We did have to do some rearranging and I can imagine with a stuff full fridge it might be hard. Ours was pretty full and we have (apartment only option) a side by side that's pretty small, this sheet pan is medium and just barely fits. We have stuff in drawers and other shelves, ha.

  4. Do you cook it untented, uncovered? I hate having to try to move things to get turkey in the refrigerator to thaw. It does look delicious.

    1. Yep, 100% uncovered. We always hear about people saying it takes three hours to cook turkeys but somehow we've shortened ours to a little over an hour. We only started the brining about 3 years ago, before that we would just do it the morning of but used a fresh not frozen turkey so we didn't have to worry about thawing time. But At least it didn't have to take up room in the fridge for a few days. Now we've adapted to keep the fridge organized before we star this, ha.

  5. That is one beautiful roasted turkey! The finished color is amazing.

    1. Yes, the color is really just picture perfect what you imagine a turkey should look like. Thanks!

  6. Yowza that's pretty. Coming over from Instagram, beautiful. Michelle

    1. Well welcome! I was just here replying to some comments and yours popped up. Thank you for the kind words and welcome! Hope you'll visit again. Thanks.


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