Recipe by USA WEEKEND columnist Pam Anderson
"Over the years, I've developed a first-rate, do-ahead menu. Here's how: I roast two small turkeys instead of one big one. We all like the idea of someone carving the turkey at the table, but here's the reality: Most people don't know how. You're gonna get turkey juices all over that nice white tablecloth, while the side dishes turn tepid. So carve one in the kitchen and use the second one for display. The second turkey is strictly for show, seconds and leftovers."
Watch video tips and tricks
turkeys (10 to 12 pounds each), neck and giblets discarded
kosher salt (do not use regular table salt)
unpeeled medium onions, coarsely chopped
unpeeled medium carrots, coarsely chopped
celery stalks, coarsely chopped
dry white wine or vermouth
low-sodium chicken broth
I "blended" this recipe with one for a dry-brined turkey from Fine Cooking -- so that I did not have to wet brine two turkeys. Splitting the bird and roasting it flat was a FANTASTIC time-saver!!! I made Thanksgiving dinner for 20 with only one oven -- and am so grateful for this recipe. The gravy is fantastic!!!
I'm rating the gravy only... it was yummy!!!
Easiest and best turkeys I ever cooked. The brine keeps the breast moist even after being kept warm (over 140) for over an hour. And the smaller birds cook so quickly. I loved having one carved, on its platter, and warmed even before my guests arrived.
My dad taught me how to make pan gravy the same way...BUT, we use flour and milk instead of cornstarch and water. Comes out super rich and delicious. Every Thanksgiving I always get a ton of compliments:)
My mother in law announced she was done hosting thanksgiving and passed the torch on to me. I'd never made a turkey before and was nervous about it. The directions were clear and easy to follow. The turkeys came out perfect (though I found out the hard way you are not supposed to leave the meat thermometer in the bird while its cooking), the gravy was good and half of the vegetables were good. My only complaint was that the veggies from bird 1 were charred into bricks by the time bird 2 was done roasting. Next time I will simply set the veggies from bird 1 aside with the bird.
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Roast Turkeys With Rich Pan Gravy
Serving Size: 1/24 of a recipe
Servings Per Recipe: 24
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat: 325
Holiday cookies, cakes, pies, and breads. Get recipes and inspiration.
Get time-saving recipes to save your busy life.
Find just the right recipes for your holiday get-togethers.
See a simple beginner-friendly method for roasting a moist, beautiful turkey.
Watch a very simple method for prepping and roasting turkey.
Take the guesswork out of preparing the perfect roast turkey.