Steven Raichlen's Turkey Brine Recipe

Discover culinary magic with Steven Raichlen's turkey brine recipe. Juicy, flavorful, and expert-approved for your best Thanksgiving feast. 🦃✨ #TurkeyBrine #ThanksgivingRecipe

Steven Raichlen Turkey Brine

    Steven Raichlen Turkey Brine

  • Cuisine: American
  • Category: Main Course
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Servings: 8
  • Calories: 300 calories

Steven Raichlen's turkey brine recipe is a culinary gem that elevates the Thanksgiving turkey to new heights. Renowned for his expertise in barbecue and grilling, Raichlen brings his signature touch to this brine, creating a flavor-packed experience that ensures a juicy and succulent bird.

This modified recipe, a harmonious blend of vegetable broth, kosher salt, brown sugar, black peppercorns, allspice berries, and fresh ginger, reflects Raichlen's commitment to depth and balance in flavors. The brine is a careful fusion of sweet and savory elements, enhancing the natural taste of the turkey while infusing it with aromatic spices.

The preparation is straightforward, requiring just a bit of patience. After bringing the brine ingredients to a boil and letting them cool, the turkey takes a luxurious soak in this flavorful concoction for at least 12 hours. The result is a turkey that not only boasts a delectable taste but also retains moisture during the cooking process.

Whether you choose to roast or smoke the turkey, the brine sets the stage for a show-stopping centerpiece to your Thanksgiving feast. It's a testament to Steven Raichlen's culinary prowess, where simplicity meets sophistication, delivering a turkey that's not just a dish but an experience.


Dive into flavor perfection with Steven Raichlen's turkey brine! Elevate your Thanksgiving feast with this expert-approved recipe for a juicy, unforgettable turkey. 🦃✨ #Thanksgiving #TurkeyBrine


  • 1 gallon vegetable broth
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons allspice berries
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 gallon ice water

Method Instructions

  1. In a large pot, combine the vegetable broth, kosher salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, and ginger. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the salt and sugar. Remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature.
  2. Once the brine is cooled, pour it into a clean, food-grade plastic bucket. Stir in the ice water.
  3. Remove giblets and neck from the turkey, and submerge the turkey in the brine. Make sure it's fully covered. You can place a heavy plate or lid on top to keep it submerged.
  4. Refrigerate the turkey in the brine for at least 12 hours or overnight.
  5. Before roasting, rinse the turkey thoroughly under cold water and pat it dry with paper towels.

This brine adds a wonderful depth of flavor to the turkey, and the salt and sugar work together to keep it moist during cooking. Give it a try, and enjoy a flavorful and juicy Thanksgiving turkey!

Recipe Video

Steven Raichlen Turkey Brine

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Recipe Tags: Steven Raichlen Turkey Brine, Steven Raichlen Turkey Brine Recipe, Recipe


Serving Steven Raichlen's turkey brine creation is as delightful as the preparation itself. Once your turkey is perfectly cooked, follow these steps to present a memorable meal:

  • Carving: Begin by placing the beautifully cooked turkey on a large cutting board. Let it rest for about 15 minutes to allow the juices to redistribute. Raichlen's brine ensures the turkey remains moist and flavorful, so this resting period is crucial.
  • Slicing: Carve the turkey using a sharp carving knife or an electric knife for precision. Start with the breast, cutting thin, even slices. Move on to the thighs and drumsticks, ensuring each piece is well-presented.
  • Plating: Arrange the sliced turkey on a platter, creating an inviting display. Consider placing some fresh herbs or citrus slices around the edges for a decorative touch.
  • Garnishing: Drizzle any remaining pan juices or a complementary sauce over the sliced turkey for added flavor and visual appeal. Fresh herbs like rosemary or thyme make excellent garnishes.
  • Side Dishes: Serve the turkey alongside your favorite Thanksgiving side dishes. Classics like mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and roasted vegetables complement the rich flavors of the brined turkey.
  • Accompaniments: Provide additional condiments or sauces on the side, such as gravy or a cranberry relish, to let your guests customize their plates.
  • Presentation: Consider decorating the table with seasonal elements, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. A beautifully set table enhances the overall dining experience.


  1. Quality Ingredients: Use high-quality vegetable broth, kosher salt, and fresh spices for the brine. The better the ingredients, the more flavorful your turkey will be.
  2. Proper Brining Time: Allow the turkey to brine for at least 12 hours or overnight. This ensures that the flavors penetrate the meat and that it stays moist during cooking.
  3. Safe Brining: When brining, make sure the turkey is fully submerged in the brine. You can use a food-grade plastic bucket or a brining bag. Keep the turkey refrigerated during the brining process to prevent any risk of bacterial growth.
  4. Rinsing and Drying: After brining, rinse the turkey thoroughly under cold water to remove excess salt from the surface. Pat it dry with paper towels to promote crispy skin during roasting or smoking.
  5. Flavorful Additions: Experiment with additional flavor enhancers. Consider adding citrus slices, fresh herbs, or garlic to the brine for an extra layer of taste.
  6. Cooking Method: Raichlen's brine works well for various cooking methods. Whether you roast, smoke, or grill the turkey, the brined bird will have enhanced flavors and remain juicy.
  7. Accurate Cooking Time: Use a meat thermometer to ensure the turkey reaches a safe internal temperature. This prevents overcooking and guarantees a moist result.
  8. Resting Period: Allow the cooked turkey to rest before carving. This gives the juices a chance to redistribute, ensuring each slice is juicy and flavorful.
  9. Customization: Feel free to adjust the recipe to your taste preferences. If you enjoy stronger flavors, consider increasing the amount of spices in the brine.
  10. Presentation: Take the time to present the turkey beautifully on a platter. A well-presented dish enhances the dining experience.

Ingredient Substitutes

If at all you find yourself missing a few ingredients for Steven Raichlen's turkey brine or want to explore alternatives, here are some substitutions you can consider:

  1. Vegetable Broth: If vegetable broth is unavailable, you can substitute it with chicken or turkey broth for a richer flavor. For a vegetarian option, use a vegetable bouillon cube or powder dissolved in water.
  2. Kosher Salt: Replace kosher salt with an equal amount of sea salt or table salt. Keep in mind that table salt is denser, so you may want to use slightly less than the specified amount.
  3. Brown Sugar: Substitute brown sugar with white sugar, maple syrup, honey, or agave nectar. Each option will impart a slightly different flavor to the brine.
  4. Black Peppercorns: Use ground black pepper if whole peppercorns are unavailable. Adjust the quantity to taste.
  5. Allspice Berries: If you don't have allspice berries, a suitable alternative is a combination of ground cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Use a small pinch of each.
  6. Fresh Ginger: Replace fresh ginger with ground ginger. Approximately 1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger can substitute for one tablespoon of fresh ginger.


As you savor each bite, let Steven Raichlen's turkey brine be the secret ingredient to your Thanksgiving triumph. Wishing you a feast full of joy and flavorful memories! 🦃✨ #TurkeyMagic #ThanksgivingDelight

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