How to Brine a Turkey Recipe

How to Brine a Turkey

Serving size varies


  • Turkey


  1. The brining process immersing turkey in salted water is a popular way to season a bird and results in moist meat. During brining water is absorbed into the turkey. During cooking the heat cooks the proteins in the meat and forms a barrier to keep the liquids from escaping.
  2. A large container is required for the brining process along with lots of space in a refrigerator. We recommend using a Metropolitan Market brining bag placed inside a container to hold the turkey and brine. You can also use a clean covered noncorrosive (glass or stainless steel) pan or stockpot or a foodsafe plastic container.
  3. Since brining does not preserve poultry the turkey must be kept below 40°F throughout the entire brining process. If refrigerator space is limited the brining process should be done with the use of ice packs to ensure the turkey stays below 40°F during the brining time.



  • 1 (12-18 lb) Turkey (non self-basting), thawed giblets and neck removed
  • Prepared Brine, cold (see recipe below)
  • A large clean container big enough to hold Metropolitan Market Brining Bag and Turkey


  1. Rinse the inside and outside of the turkey in cool water. Set aside.
  2. Place turkey, breast side down, in brining bag. Place bag in a large container. Add prepared brine. Turkey should be submerged in the brine. Press the air out of the bag and seal. Refrigerate the container with the turkey for 12-16 hours. Turn the turkey halfway through the brining time or adjust to make sure it’s all getting brined.
  3. Before cooking, remove the turkey from brine. Thoroughly rinse inside and outside of turkey under a slow stream of cool water. Pat the skin and both cavities dry.
  4. Cook as desired.

Basic Homemade Brine


  • 1 cup table salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 quarts water


  1. Dissolve salt and sugar in water in a large container.

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