Sweet and Spicy Turkey Brine

Turkey in the oven


2 gallons water/ice
2 cups kosher salt
1 cup honey
2 cups brown sugar
4 cloves garlic – coarsely chopped
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1 tsp whole cloves
Juice from one orange
Bunch of thyme sprigs


Bring ONE gallon of water to a soft boil. SLOWLY add the kosher salt. Stir, then let the rest of the ingredients go swimming. Let cool. Add half gallon cold water and stir. Add ice to the equivalent of 1/2 gallon of water. Add the turkey, breast side down, ensuring that the cavities are filled with brine as well. Let set for 12 hours or so.

I personally put all of this into kitchen garbage bags (I double bag to be safe), put it in a cooler and load it with ice.

**** Make sure you keep the turkey iced!!!!

When done brining your turkey in this sweet and spicy brine – cook the turkey, covered, at 325 – 15 minutes per pound. I remove the cover with 30 minutes left, baste with salted butter, and cook the remainder without a cover to crisp the skin. I also cook it breast side down for the first hour– the juices flow to the bottom of the turkey. Creates a moist little heaven!

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