I love Turkey, Like seriously one of my all time favorite food! I make a Turkey as often as I can, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter at least! So when we decided to do an early Thanksgiving dinner with other bloggers I was thrilled to make another one!
I’ve made around 30+ turkey’s over the last 13 years I’ve been married. I’ve tried a lot of different techniques to get a flavorful, juicy turkey. Injecting, brining, roasting, deep frying, basting, stuffed, unstuffed, etc… Some of these taste amazing, most of them are very dry and ALL of them take a lot of work.
That’s when I heard of a brown bag turkey! BRILLIANT! The bag keeps your turkey juicy and moist without the extra work of basting, AND because brown paper ags breath better than plastic you still get a great brown on the skin, you end up with a gorgeous centerpiece that tastes great!
You can prepare the Turkey ANY way you want, injections, stuffed, putting a mixture under the skin, etc… But the key is a Meat Thermometer. It’s a MUST for cooking a Turkey and not OVER cooking it. A digital one is easy to use and takes a lot of the work out of your turkey.
I prefer to use a disposable pan as well. That way I don’t have to store a big pan for just three meals a year AND (this is the most important part to me) I can pop a hole in the bottom corner and easily pour all the turkey juice into the gravy recipe without having to try to pour it out with a hot turkey in the pan.
- Turkey (I cook 18-20 lbs usually)
- Brown paper bags
- 2 onions sliced
- 8 cloves garlic crushed
- Preheat your oven to 375
- clean your thawed turkey with cool water, making sure to take out the neck and gizzards (you can save for another recipe or throw out)
- Pat your turkey dry and rub it all over with softened butter, give it a nice coating.
- Sprinkle salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme all over your turkey and massage it in very well.
- optional - I like to make a compound butter out of the spices and butter, then rub that compound butter UNDER THE SKIN of the turkey for better flavoring the meat.
- toss the sliced onions and crushed garlic into the cavity of your turkey (not filling or it will take longer to cook) and around the outside in the pan, this will help flavor the drippings as well (for gravy)
- Place your turkey in your pan (I prefer disposable for easy drippings removal for my turkey gravy later). Put your meat thermometer into the breast of the turkey, making sure it doesn't touch any bone.
- Open your brown paper bags, slide the turkey/pan into one bag, then from the opposite side slide the turkey/pan and first bag into the second bag.
- They will overlap and encase the turkey, it's perfect.
- he butter on your turkey will keep it from sticking, and as long as your paper bag isn't touching a heating element it won't burn (paper burns at 451 degrees)
- Place your turkey into the oven and cook until your meat thermometer reads 180 (I actually pull mine out at 175, it goes up to 180 when resting) about 13-15 mins per lbs unstuffed.
- Pull your turkey out and let it rest for 15 mins, then pour the drippings into a pan to make your gravy
- then plate and serve!
This is what your Turkey will look like all bagged up and ready to place in the oven! It couldn’t be easier, just put it in and forget about it! you can worry about all the other parts of your dinner and your turkey will be gorgeous and taste amazing!
I dressed mine up with some Lemon branches, but you can add anything you want to yours, I’ve seen really pretty ones with bright berries, stuffing, potatoes, apples, and more! How do you like to dress up your turkey?