Brining a Turkey: Butterball Steps

November 28, 2013

The Butterball Turkey Talk-Line provides answers to all turkey questions in English and Spanish at 1-800-BUTTERBALL (800-288-8372) from now until December 24, 2013. It's open Monday through Friday from 8am-8pm CT, and on Thanksgiving Day from 6am-5:00pm CT.

Brining Steps

The first step in the process is selecting your brine recipe. Our Savory Turkey Brine made with Kikkoman Soy Sauce is a simple and versatile choice that works for any occasion. Once you've selected your brine you'll need to:

Purchase a fresh turkey to eliminate the need to thaw, or completely thaw a frozen turkey.
The night before roasting, remove the giblets and turkey neck. Rinse the turkey inside and out.
Prepare your brine. Be sure to mix ingredients until all of the salt is dissolved. If your brine is heated, be sure to cool it to room temperature before brining.
Place your turkey, breast down, in a large container made of food-grade plastic, stainless steel, glass, or a brining bag. Be sure the container will fit in your fridge.
Add brine, covering the entire turkey.
Place in the refrigerator for the specified period of time.
Remove turkey from brine after recommended time. Rinse and pat dry with paper towels. Cook turkey as desired.

Perfect Brine Time
12 lbs. or less 8 to 12 hrs.
12 to 14 lbs. 9 to 14 hrs.
20 lbs. and over 15 to 20 hrs.

Savory Turkey Brine

2 gallons cold water
10 ounces Soy Sauce
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons dried sage
2 tablespoons dried celery seed
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 16 – 24 lbs. Butterball® Whole Turkey
Mix all ingredients until the salt is dissolved and follow our Brining Steps.
Did You Know
As a rule of thumb, you should brine your turkey 45 to 60 minutes per pound.

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