Secrets to a Perfectly Seasoned Turkey

Cook, Learn, Thanksgiving, Tips & Techniques

Don’t stress out about a dry, bland turkey this Thanksgiving. In reality, there are plenty of ways to ensure a moist and flavorful bird without too much trouble.


Some cooks swear by brining, while others prefer simple salt and pepper sprinkled on the turkey skin. No matter what you choose, keep reading for our expert seasoning tips.


Using a Spice Rub

It’s easy to create signature seasoning blends for the Thanksgiving bird, from spice rubs and pastes to savory liquid blends.


First, choose a medley of your favorite herbs and spices. For the freshest flavor and aroma, grind whole spices in a spice grinder, then custom-blend your seasonings. Add olive, canola or grape seed oil to make a paste, or broth or wine for liquid blends. Dry rubs and pastes are rubbed into the skin, which should be scored first to allow the flavor to permeate the turkey.
Dry rubs and pastes are rubbed into the skin, which should be scored first with a meat tenderizer to allow the flavor to permeate the turkey. Rub the spices under the skin and on the outside of the turkey before roasting. 



This method allows the seasonings to penetrate the meat and encourages the fat to render, resulting in optimal flavor and texture.



Tool Tip

You can also use a flavor injector to achieve a savory, juicy bird. The syringe inserts liquid flavoring into the turkey before roasting, eliminating the need to baste.

Brushing the turkey with liquid while it roasts helps to seal in moisture, creating a delicious, attractive finish. Basting large birds will prevent them from drying during their longer cooking times.


A basting liquid can be as simple as a good-quality oil, or it can be a vibrantly seasoned mixture with flavorful liquids and aromatic ingredients. It should always include some fat to carry flavor and prevent the food from drying out.


Avoid basting too often, as heat will escape from the oven and prevent proper cooking. Basting every 45 minutes to 1 hour is a good rule of thumb.


How to Brine

A good brine keeps your turkey tender, succulent and packed with flavor.


To make a basic brine, stir in 1/4 cup kosher salt for every 4 cups of liquid. (The salt should be kosher salt, which does not contain additives.) You can use water only or mix in other flavorful liquids, such as orange juice, apple cider or wine. Brown sugar, lemon zest, garlic, ginger, sage, rosemary and cinnamon sticks are just a few popular flavoring ingredients. Heating the liquids helps to dissolve the salt and meld the flavors, but be sure to cool the brine completely before adding the turkey.


A whole turkey is best after brining for about 24 hours. See how Amanda, one of our culinary experts, does it in the video below.

35 comments about “Secrets to a Perfectly Seasoned Turkey

  1. Top 10 Turkey Questions Answered

  2. Weekly Wrap-Up (11/13-11/19)

  3. Maysem

    In the video, Amanda says not to stuff a brined turkey. My family and I LOVE stuffing in a turkey so I can’t not stuff the turkey with the stuffing:) Any other suggestions? Should I just skip the brining?

    1. fireAKems

      Try cooking the stuffing separately, then stuffing it in the turkey when it is finished. Do it on the fly and and no one will know the difference.

  4. Olivia Ware Post author

    Maysem, try just seasoning under and over the turkey skin with butter, salt, pepper and herbs instead of brining. The stuffing will help keep the bird moist and flavorful, too. Enjoy!

  5. Yoke

    I stuff a brined turkey or chicken all the time. Just use a little less or no salt in your stuffing

  6. Nancy

    Please tell me if I can add liquied to the dry buttermilk rub instead of using it dry? I’ve never used dry rub for turkey, didn’t read the info about the buttermilk product before I purchased it.

  7. Turkey Time! « Natick Mall Guru

  8. Turkey Time! - natickblog

  9. How to cook a moist and savory turkey! | DIY Cozy Cottage

  10. Www.Streetfire.Net

    Terrific article! This is the type of info that are meant to be shared across the
    net. Disgrace on the seek engines for now not positioning
    this post higher! Come on over and talk over with my website .
    Thank you =)

  11. stroller for two

    It is appropriate time to make a few plans for the longer term and
    it’s time to be happy. I have learn this publish and if I may just I wish to counsel you some interesting things
    or tips. Maybe you can write subsequent articles relating to this article.

    I desire to learn even more issues approximately it!

  12. rise loans

    Aw, this waѕ aan exceptioոally nice post. Spending some time anոd actual effort too generate a very good article… but what can І say…
    I ɦesitate a whole lot and don’t seem tօ get anything done.

  13. louisville plumber

    Today, I went to the beachfront with my kids. I found a sea shell and
    gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.”
    She put the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and
    it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is entirely off topic
    but I had to tell someone!

    1. Donna

      It’s off the topic but worth the read….aww she only wanted to hear the ocean!

  14. best curling irons

    Hello it’s me, I am also visiting this website on a regular basis, this web page is
    truly pleasant and the users are really sharing good thoughts.

  15. Maryanne

    Hello are using WordPress for your blog platform? I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and create my own.

    Do you require any coding expertise to make your own blog?
    Any help would be really appreciated!

  16. metin2 yang hack 2014

    By citing the cause within the text, yoou give your readers an opportunity to find the source material themselves,
    whenever they wanbt more details about a particular quote or idea.
    “We shall barricade our number inside church and seek God’s protection,” she finally told some
    guards when all were back inside that logg and wood shingle building.
    Thee consequence of this political and economic disintegration can be that none of
    thhe stattes were prpared for aany common market undertakings givedn that they
    lacked a standard political groound while at the same time noo state was strong enough too coerce itss neighbors
    into adopting its political ideology.

  17. งานเสริม

    This design is spectacular! You obviously know how to keep a reader entertained.
    Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start my own
    blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Great job. I really enjoyed
    what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it.
    Too cool!

  18. 13 Scariest Words In Recipes And What They Mean | Viral News Worthy

  19. 13 Scariest Words In Recipes And What They Mean | What's Trending Now

  20. 13 Scariest Words In Recipes And What They Mean | Diets Buzz

  21. 13 Scariest Words In Recipes And What They Mean | awesome viral content

  22. O que significam "baste" e "basting"? - Inglês Gourmet

  23. 高品質2015シャネル スーパーコピー激安專門店弊社は海外大好評を博くシャネル コピー激安老舗です,2015高品質シャネル バッグ コピー,シャネル 靴 コピー,シャネル 財布 コピー品の品質は

    スーパーコピー時計,バッグ,財布| ブランドコピーの専門店スーパーコピー豊富に揃えております、最も手頃ず価格だお気に入りの商品を購入。弊社フクショー(FUKUSHOW)ブランド腕時計、雑貨、小物最新作!エルメス バーキンスーパーコピー時計N品のみ取り扱っていまずのて、2年品質保証。エルメス食器,スーパーコピーブランド激安販売シャネル 財布スーパーコピー,スーパーコピーブランド 財布激安販売エルメス スーパーコピー,スーパーコピーブランド激安販売売スーパーコピーロレックス スーパーコピー,スーパーコピーROLEX激安販売IWC スーパーコピー,スーパーコピーIWC時計激安販売エルメス時計スーパーコピー,スーパーコピーhermes時計激安販売ボッテガ ヴェネタスーパーコピー,スーパーコピーブランド財布激安販売スーパーコピー時計スーパーコピーブランドバッグ時計コピー激安販売
    高品質2015シャネル スーパーコピー激安專門店弊社は海外大好評を博くシャネル コピー激安老舗です,2015高品質シャネル バッグ コピー,シャネル 靴 コピー,シャネル 財布 コピー品の品質はよくて、激安の大特価でご提供します。

  24. ブランドコピー時計大人気を海外激安通販専門店ロレックス、ブルガリ、フランク ミュラー、シャネル、カルティエ、オメガ、IWC、ルイヴィトン、オーデマ ピゲ、ブライトリング、グッチ

    スーパーコピーブランド格安販売店はこちらへ!品々の激安価格に持ったスーパーコピーブランド 代引きの新作はお客様に提供されます。安心、迅速、確実、お客様の手元にお届け致します。★弊社は9年の豊富な経験と実績を持っております。★一流の素材を選択し、精巧な作り方でまるで本物のようなな製品を造ります。★品質を重視、納期も厳守、お客様第一主義を貫きは当社の方針です。★驚きの低価格で商品をお客様に提供致します!★早速に購入へようこそ!
    ブランドコピー時計大人気を海外激安通販専門店ロレックス、ブルガリ、フランク ミュラー、シャネル、カルティエ、オメガ、IWC、ルイヴィトン、オーデマ ピゲ、ブライトリング、グッチ、エルメス、パネライ、パテックフィリップ偽物(コピー商品)のブランドの腕時計の販売、通販。

  25. 人気スーパーコピーブランド時計激安通販専門店私達は長年の実体商店の販売経験を持って、先進とプロの技術を持って、高品質のスーパーコピー時計づくりに 取り組んでいます。最高品

    スーパーコピー時計販売はコピーガガミラノ通販専門店です . 0.106072179 レプリカガガミラノの私は(私がオンラインで見つける大丈夫、ランダマイザ)大きなふわふわサンタの帽子の中にすべてのaBlogtoWatchチームメンバーの名前を入れて、ランダムに彼らは匿名で2014年からガガミラノの時計を選ぶだろう誰のために相互に各チームメンバーをペアに名前を描いた私はその後、それぞれに通知彼らは「買い物」のためだった、と彼らに “贈り物”を選択し、彼らはその人のためにその時計を選んだ理由について書くための期限を与えた人物 . スーパーコピーガガミラノ時計豊富な品揃えで最新作も随時入荷致しております のでごゆっくりとご覧ください。☆ ガガミラノ時計税関の没収する商品は再度無料にして発送します☆ 送料無料 .
    人気スーパーコピーブランド時計激安通販専門店私達は長年の実体商店の販売経験を持って、先進とプロの技術を持って、高品質のスーパーコピー時計づくりに 取り組んでいます。最高品質のロレックス時計コピー、カルティエ時計コピー、IWC時計コピー、ブライトリング時計コピー、パネライ時計コピー激安販売中商品の数量は多い、品質はよい。海外直営店直接買い付け!★ 2015年注文割引開催中,全部の商品割引10% ★ 在庫情報随時更新! ★ 実物写真、付属品を完備する。 ★ 100%を厳守する。 ★ 送料は無料です(日本全国)!★ お客さんたちも大好評です★ 経営方針: 品質を重視、納期も厳守、信用第一!税関の没収する商品は再度無料にして発送します

  26. Vanessa T

    I sure do miss you all’s Turkey Rub from years ago. If you all don’t sell it anymore, why don’t you share it with us?

  27. review

    Thanks for every other fantastic article. The place else could anybody get that kind of info
    in such an ideal way of writing? I’ve a presentation subsequent week, and I am on the search for such info.

  28. (source)

    Valuable information. Fortunate me I found your site by chance, and I’m shocked why this coincidence did not came about in advance!
    I bookmarked it.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *