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Swanson Blog / Real Food / Recipe Section

Savory Brined Turkey

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tasty turkey pot stickers

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, which means it’s time for stuffing, pie and turkey. This holiday season, try a new turkey recipe that takes only a few minutes to prepare. Brining is a well-known process of adding moisture and flavor to meat, and it usually features some combination of salt, water and spices. This recipe helps bump up the flavor with thyme and honey! At a little over 200 calories per serving, this turkey recipe is a great choice. Enjoy the familiar taste of the holidays, and leave room for the rest of the Thanksgiving spread.

Time: 24 hours +1.5 hours
Serves: 12
Serving size: 4 ounces 






  1. Combine 1 cup water, 2 tablespoons black peppercorn and 1 tablespoon thyme leaves in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and remove from heat. Pour into a large bowl, and allow it to cool to room temperature.
  2. Add remaining water, salt, honey and brown sugar, stirring well until salt and brown sugar dissolve. Pour mixture into a 2-gallon zip-top plastic bag. Add ice cubes and turkey. Seal the bag and refrigerate 24 hours, turning the bag occasionally.
  3. Remove turkey from the bag, and discard the brine. Pat turkey dry with paper towels.
  4. Preheat oven to 400° F and spray a roasting pan with cooking spray.
  5. Rub turkey with oil. Combine 1 tablespoon black peppercorn and 1 teaspoon dried thyme and rub over turkey, covering well.
  6. Place the turkey on prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour or until thermometer inserted into thickest portion of the breast reaches 180° F.
  7. Place turkey on a platter. Cover with foil and let stand 15 minutes. Garnish with thyme sprigs if desired. Serve warm.

Recipe adapted from My Recipes

Nutrition Facts (per serving):
Note: roughly 10% of the brine is absorbed; brine ingredients are figured at 10%.

  • Calories 204
  • Fat 7.5 grams
  • Protein 30.5 grams
  • Sodium 297 milligrams
  • Carbohydrates 1.5 grams
  • Fiber 0 grams

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