Alton Brown's Roast Turkey (from Trader Joe's)

I volunteered to handle the bird this year at the in-law's for Thanksgiving. In no uncertain terms The Wife told me I "had better bring my A game." I ad seen this episode of Alton Brown's Good Eats, it seemed easy enough, and this recipe got 2,500+ rave reviews on the Food Network site.

I have to admit I cheated. I didn't brine my own, I bought one of Trader Joe's brined turkeys and picked up where the brining left off. I "stuffed" the bird with aromatics of an apple, an onion, a celery stalk and a cinnamon stick. I made an herb butter with garlic and turkey seasoning and rubbed that under the skin.
The turkey from Trader Joe's was great. It was the most moist bird anyone at the table had ever eaten.

1 Turkey

Canola Oil
Aluminum Foil

1 Apple

1 Onion

2 Celery Stalks

1 Cinnamon Stick

1 Cup Water

Herb Butter
1 Stick Butter - Room Temperature
1/4 Cup Dried Garlic Flakes

1 Tbsp. Turkey Seasoning

1 Tsp. Parsley

Take the aluminum foil and roll out a square that, when folded in half to form a triangle, will cover the breast of the bird. Go ahead and form it over the turkey, remove it and apply a coating of canola oil and set aside.

Chop aromatics into large chunks and place in a bowl, add one cup of water and microwave for 5 minutes.

Lightly stuff the bird with the aromatics when they're cool enough to handle. You don't want to pack them in, just lightly fill.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.

Rub the herb butter under the skin above the breasts, careful not to break the skin.

Rub the outside of the bird with canola oil.

Place turkey on a "V" rack in a large roasting pan. and place in the oven for 30 minutes.

**Note - there will be smoke because of how hot the oven is, and the canola oils reaction. This is normal, but you might want to disable the smoke detectors. It's not a ton, but expect it.

After 30 minutes, remove the turkey from the oven and apply the breast plate. Lower temperature to 350 and insert a thermometer.

Roast the bird until it reached 160 degrees. Remove it from the oven and cover with an aluminum foil tent and let rest for at least 15 minutes. The temperature will continue to rise to 165. You want to make sure the white meat is at 165 and the dark meat is at 185.


  1. What is a breast plate? This recipe sounds great will be making it for Thanksgiving.

  2. The breast plate is a piece of aluminum foil fitted to cover the breast meat. See Alton Browns video on the Food Network site.

  3. The breast plate is the aluminum foil that gets folded into a triangle in the first paragraph of the directions.

    It's a great recipe- Happy Thanksgiving!

  4. You know that edible Rapeseed oil (marketed as Canola) is one of the worst industrial seed oils one can use? The industry convinced people that it's the healthiest. Please use something natural and healthy instead, right? Butter is far far better. Grass-fed is the real thing.

  5. Yummy , So nice and good recipe, I am loving it.


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