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Simple Succulent Roast Turkey (Dry Brine) - You will never use another method again! Dry brining will give you the most moist, tender, flavor filled turkey you have ever eaten.
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4.45 from 9 votes

Simple Succulent Dry Brined Roast Turkey

Simple Succulent Dry Brined Roast Turkey - You will never use another method again! Dry brining will give you a phenomenally moist, tender, deep flavor filled turkey.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time2 hrs 45 mins
Total Time2 hrs 55 mins
Course: Dinner, Main
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dry brine, roast, roasted, turkey
Servings: 12
Calories: 501kcal
Author: Don't Sweat The Recipe


  • 1 12 to 16- pound turkey not self-basting - partially frozen will work
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 Tablespoon butter melted (optional)


  • Remove the turkey from the packaging, pat dry.
  • Measure 1 tablespoon of kosher salt in a bowl for every 5 pounds the turkey weighs (for a 15-pound turkey, you'd need 3 tablespoons). Grind together the bay leaf and dried thyme with the salt in a spice grinder or small food processor.
  • Sprinkle the inside of the turkey lightly with salt. Place the turkey on its back and salt the skin of the breasts, concentrating the salt in the center, where the meat is thickest. (Probably about 1 tablespoon) Turn the turkey on one side and sprinkle the entire side with salt, concentrating on the thigh. ( a little less than a tablespoon.) Flip the turkey over and do the same with the opposite side.
  • Place the turkey in an oven bag, press out the air and seal tightly or wrap the bird in a few layers of plastic wrap. Place the turkey breast-side up on a baking tray in the refrigerator. Chill for 3 days*. Rub the salt around once a day. (Liquid will collect in the bag—this is normal)
  • For the crispiest skin, the night before, remove the turkey from the bag. There should be no salt visible on the surface and the skin should be moist but not wet. Place the turkey breast-side up on a plate and refrigerate uncovered for at least 8 hours.
  • On the day it is to be cooked, remove the turkey from the refrigerator and leave it at room temperature at least 1 hour (do not rinse—rinsing will make the skin less crispy). Heat the oven to 425° F.
  • Pat dry one last time. Place the turkey on a roasting rack in a roasting pan; put it in the oven. After 30 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 325° F, return the turkey to the oven and roast until a thermometer inserted in the deepest part of the thigh, but not touching the bone, reads 165° F, about 2 3/4 hours total roasting. The last 30 minutes of roasting brush the turkey with melted butter, if desired.
  • Remember dry-brined turkey cooks more quickly than one that hasn't been brined, it's best to check the temperature early with this recipe, it may be done faster than you think.
  • Remove the turkey from the oven, transfer it to a warm platter or carving board; tent loosely with foil. Let rest at least 30 minutes to let the juices redistribute through the meat.
  • Carve and serve.


*Brine at least 24 hours before cooking. Can be brined up to three days.
 Our turkey was almost 15lbs. We used 3 tablespoons of kosher salt, 1 teaspoon dried thyme and 1 large bay leaf.
 You can cook stuffing in the turkey. Use a little less salt than normal in the mix.


Calories: 501kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 76g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 254mg | Sodium: 399mg | Potassium: 782mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 225IU | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 3.1mg