Smoked Turkey Brine

The bird brines
evan p. cordes/Flickr
  • 25 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Yield: Makes 1 gallon (serves 10-12)
Ratings (17)

This turkey brine is simple and effective. The light flavor of the tarragon adds just the right enhancement to turkey and the brine produces a moister, more tender bird.  Try this brine for those holiday turkeys. These quantities work best for a 14-16 pound bird.

What You'll Need

  • 1 gallon/3.8 L water
  • 1 cup/240 mL salt (1 1/2 cups/360 mL Kosher or coarse salt)
  • 1 cup/240 mL white sugar
  • 10-12 fresh tarragon leaves or 1/4 cup/60 mL dried tarragon
  • 1 teaspoon/5 mL black pepper

How to Make It

1. The water you use should not be chlorinated. If you don't have easy access to good spring water. Boil it first, let the water cool completely and then add all other ingredients.

2. Mix brine thoroughly. Place turkey in large non-metallic dish and cover completely with brine.

3. Let sit in the refrigerator for 1 hour per pound. Remove turkey from brine, rinse thoroughly and pat dry. Coat with olive oil.

Place in smoker. Cook as directed.