Can You Brine a Butterball Turkey (You Might Be Suprised!)

You might have heard that important to brine your turkey!

But are you wondering if you can brine a Butterball turkey?

We have all the answers in this post so keep reading!

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Can You Brine a Butterball Turkey?

It is not recommended to brine a Butterball turkey as they pre-brine them.

Butterball injects their turkeys with a saline solution.

This is essentially a brine so there is no need to brine their turkeys.

However, many people do.

If you choose to brine a Butterball turkey, use less salt than the recipe calls for.

Use about 3/4 cup kosher salt per gallon of water when brining a Butterball.

If you use table salt, you should only use about 6 tablespoons per gallon of water.

What Is Brining?

Brining is a preparation method that adds moisture to meat.

If you want juicy meat, consider brining it first.

Salt breaks down the meat so that it will better retain liquids.

The two types of brining are dry brine and wet brine.

A dry brine consists of a dry salt solution, maybe with some added seasonings.

A wet brine consists of a saltwater solution, with maybe some other flavors.

How Do You Brine a Turkey?

Most people use the wet brine method to brine a turkey.

Prepare the Brine

Make a saltwater solution with kosher salt. Kosher salt is preferred to table salt because it has a less salty taste.

You can also add brown sugar, aromatic herbs, or garlic cloves, or any other additional seasonings.

Some people may add chicken stock or apple juice to the brine solution.

Using different brine ingredients will result in different flavor profiles.

Brine the Turkey

While you can brine a frozen turkey, it is better to thaw the turkey completely.

Put the turkey in a clean bucket or large container with lid.

Pour the turkey brine over the turkey until it is covered.

Cover the container. You can use aluminum foil if you don’t have a proper lid.

How Long to Brine the Turkey?

You should brine the whole bird for 45-60 minutes per pound.

If you don’t have enough time, you can add more kosher salt to the brine solution.

Prepare the Turkey

Remove the turkey from the brine. Pat it dry with a paper towel.

Now you can season it, stuff it, or put it in the oven. The turkey is ready to cook however you like to cook it.

Should You Brine a Turkey?

If you want your turkey meat to be juicy, you should brine the turkey.

You may run the risk of overly salty or tough turkey.

If you use the right amount of kosher salt, this shouldn’t be a problem.

You should also be sure to brine it for the proper length of time.

Is It Safe to Brine a Turkey?

Raw poultry carries many pathogens. The less time you spend with raw meat out in the open, the better.

However, there are ways to decrease your risk of cross-contamination.

Brine the turkey in an open space away from raw food and clean dishes.

Immediately clean the surfaces within a few feet of where you brined the turkey.

People brine their turkeys every year without getting food poisoning.

As long as you follow food safety basics, you should be fine.

Can You Brine a Turkey That You Plan to Deep Fry?

You can brine a turkey that you plan to deep fry.

The important thing is to completely dry the turkey before frying it.

It may be better to use a dry brine for a turkey that you plan to deep fry.

Top Turkey Tips

Thaw the turkey thoroughly and safely.

You can defrost a turkey in the microwave, in the refrigerator, or in cold water.

Never thaw the turkey in hot water or on the counter at room temperature.

We like to smoke our Butterball turkey, see our recipe here.

If the turkey isn’t fully thawed, you can still put it in the oven.

Just add an hour or two to the cooking time.

Once the turkey is getting close to being ready, check the internal temperature.

Avoid the temptation to check the temperature too early.

Each time you open the oven, you increase the cooking time.

Insert an oven-safe meat thermometer into the thickest part of the turkey.

Do not touch the bone. If the meat thermometer reads a safe temperature of 165°F, it is ready.

Let the turkey rest about 15 minutes before carving.

Then carve, serve, and enjoy!

can-you-brine-a-frozen-butterball-turkey

You should have a good understanding of how to brine and cook a turkey.

Now you’re ready to put your knowledge to the test!

If you follow these tips, you’ll definitely impress the guests at your turkey dinner!

Smoke On!

Charlie

Author: Charlie Reeves
Hi, I’m Charlie, I am head taste tester at Simply Meat Smoking! I love it grilling, smoking, and getting out in the yard with the kids! The family also love to test all my recipes (especially my EXTRA CRISPY pulled pork, smoky pork loin, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill)

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling adventures with you!

You can read more on our About Us page.

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