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Butter-Basted Herbed Turkey

(6 Votes)
3 Hr

Let's talk about a classic way to prepare your turkey that is buttery-good! Our easy turkey recipe is the perfect way to make Thanksgiving very special and super tasty; the expertly blended spices and the extra attention we give to everyone's favorite bird, means that the Thanksgiving flavors are sure to be gobble-it-up-good! You might want to sneak a few bites in the kitchen; once this turkey hits the table, it won't last long.

What You'll Need

  • 1 (12- to 15-pound) turkey
  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 2 celery stalks, cut in quarters

What to Do

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove giblets and neck from turkey; reserve for a later use. Rinse turkey with cold water, pat dry, and place in a roasting pan breast side up.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine butter, parsley, poultry seasoning, paprika, garlic, salt, and pepper; mix well. Rub half the mixture over outside of turkey. Reserve the remaining herbed butter mixture for basting. Place onion and celery in cavity of turkey. If you would like, now would be the perfect time to tie the legs together with kitchen twine.
  3. Cover turkey with foil and roast 1-1/2 hours. Remove foil and brush with remaining herbed butter. Continue to cook uncovered 1-1/2 to 2 more hours, or until thermometer reaches 180 degrees in thickest part of thigh, basting with herbed butter every 30 minutes. (Make sure you do not baste the last 30 minutes or so to prevent any cross-contamination).
  4. Remove turkey from pan and place on a cutting board to rest 15 minutes before carving.

Mr. Food Test Kitchen Tips!

Ratings & Comments

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When do you stuff the bird?

Please post the how-to reheat turkey on Thanksgiving when you cook it the day before

This compound butter method really takes the guesswork out of cooking a big bird. Even a beginner can do this quickly and easily! I use seasoned butter for roast chicken frequently - it helps the herbs and spices really stick to the bird so that it can soak up all their savory flavors. I sometimes like to make a butter with fresh garlic and creole seasoning for grilling or broiling salmon!

Hi test food kitchen, I want to try this recipe for our Thanksgiving dinner. Your recipe calls for a 12 LB Turkey, I have a 20 LB Turkey, will the amount of the ingredients stay the same, or will they have to be increased ?

Hello! We recommend adding an extra half stick of butter and 1/4 teaspoon extra of spices. Enjoy!

Loved it. I also tried cooking it upside down for the first hour, then flipped it for the remainder of the cook time. Most tender turkey I've had yet

I have watched your video and when it comes to washing the bird, now you have contaminated your whole kitchen with campylobacter. There are articles in print on this subject, and your food safety should be your first priority with millions of people watching your videos for helpful advise. You should redo the video leaving out the washing of the bird. If you would like the literature on the subject I would relay that to you. I tell all my establishment "Put Food Safety First", I'm a Public Health Inspector.

You clean the sink and counter after you wash the turkey. Anyone knows that!

Can this method be used when cooking a turkey in a bag?

Yes, you can use the ingredients just don't baste throughout the cooking. Leave the bag closed and the turkey will turn out great!


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