Juicy Two-Stage Thanksgiving Turkey Marinade Recipe - Allrecipes.com
Juicy Two-Stage Thanksgiving Turkey Marinade Recipe
  • READY IN 2+ days

Juicy Two-Stage Thanksgiving Turkey Marinade

Recipe by  

"This recipe has two different marinades that are started on Tuesday morning. This is a marinade recipe only, and makes a pre-Thanksgiving marinade for a juicy turkey with lots of flavor."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 1 marinated turkey Change Servings
  • PREP

    25 mins

    2 days 25 mins


  1. On the Tuesday morning before Thanksgiving, whisk together salt, orange juice, brown sugar, a cinnamon stick and water in a large nonreactive container with a cover, such as a large stainless steel stockpot. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve, about 5 minutes. Place the turkey into the brine, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
  2. The next day, remove turkey from the first marinade, shake off excess, and pat the bird dry. Discard the brine. Clean the stockpot or brining container.
  3. In the clean stockpot, make the marinade by stirring together together sliced oranges, sliced lemons, onion, green bell pepper, parsley, cloves, garlic powder, cinnamon sticks, paprika, olive oil, and pepper. Place the turkey into the stockpot and rub the marinade into the turkey. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  4. On Thanksgiving Day, remove turkey from the marinade and shake off the excess. Discard the remaining marinade. Roast the turkey using your favorite method.
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  • Editor's Note
  • If there is not enough brine to completely cover the turkey, make additional. Do not dilute the brine with water, or the flavor will be weakened.
  • Always brine foods in a food-grade, nonreactive container such as a stainless steel or enameled stockpot, a brining bag, or a food-grade plastic bucket. Never use ordinary trash bags, plastic trash cans, or metal buckets or containers not meant for food use.

Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Nov 27, 2008

This turkey marinade is awesome the taste it gives is undeniably the best i have EVER EVER EVER had including in the restaurants!!

Most Helpful Critical Review
Nov 19, 2009

This did produce a tender turkey but I was sooo thirsty after eating it! And I tried to get off as much as the brine as I could. Also, the turkey picked up none of the flavor of the marinade whatsoever. I think Turkey Mercedes from this site is a comparable, and far superior recipe.


16 Ratings

Nov 30, 2009

My turkey turned out so well. It had an awesome flavor to it. I was scared that the brine was going to make it salty, but it didn't. It was very moist and tender. This is going to be ther only way I make my turkeys for now on!

Dec 07, 2009

This was really good! I had to double the recipe on the brine because I had a 27 pound turkey, but it was easy and it added a lot of flavor to the turkey. Family said that it was the best turkey that they ever had!

Nov 30, 2010

The first picture of this recipe is the turkey I made for Thanksgiving today! This is absolutely the best turkey I've ever made! It was so tender that the breast meat actually slid off of the carcass in the oven and into the pan below! The meat is tender and unbelievably juicy. The flavor is wonderfully savory and fragrant. Definitely worth the work! Highly recommended! Me and my parents have been picking at the meat all morning and are making plans to buy another bird to use this recipe with!

Dec 02, 2008

Turkey was excellent! This redcipe made it juicy and flavorful. DH said this was the best turkey he'd ever had. And he is not a big turkey fan.

Nov 23, 2009

This is well worth the time. Great recipe wouldn't change a thing.

Dec 26, 2008

Just used this recipe for Christmas, 2008. Turkey was moist and very flavorful. I highly recommend it.


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  • Calories
  • 814 kcal
  • 41%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 27.1 g
  • 9%
  • Cholesterol
  • 268 mg
  • 89%
  • Fat
  • 35.7 g
  • 55%
  • Fiber
  • 3.6 g
  • 14%
  • Protein
  • 93.3 g
  • 187%
  • Sodium
  • 7680 mg
  • 307%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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