Image of Molasses Turkey Brine Recipe

Molasses Turkey Brine Recipe

Image of Molasses Turkey Brine Recipe
  • icons/brand/timer copy 2 Created with Sketch. Prep Time: 50 minutes
  • icons/brand/timer copy 2 Created with Sketch. Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • icons/brand/timer copy 2 Created with Sketch. Total Time: 1 hour
  • icons/brand/silverware copy Created with Sketch. Yield: 1 batch


  • 12-14 lb. thawed turkey (neck, giblets, and any plastic packaging removed)
  • 1 ½ gal. water
  • 2 C. kosher salt
  • 1 C. Grandma’s® Molasses
  • 32 oz. apple juice or cider
  • 2 oranges, sliced
  • 4 large sprigs rosemary
  • ½ bunch Italian flat-leaf parsley
  • 8 sprigs thyme
  • 8 whole cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 Spice Islands® Bay Leaves
  • 2 Tbsp. black peppercorns


  1. Combine 5 cups of water, salt and molasses in a large pot. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, for 6-8 minutes or until the salt has dissolved.
  2. Add the remaining brine ingredients and stir to combine. Allow it to cool.
  3. Place the turkey in a large pot, bucket or clean cooler and pour the brine over the turkey so that the whole turkey is covered.
  4. If the turkey is not completely submerged, you can rotate it halfway through the process.
  5. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 12-14 hours.
  6. Remove the turkey from the brine and pat dry with paper towels (dry inside the cavity as well).
  7. Discard the brine.
  8. Return the dried turkey to the refrigerator for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.
  9. Finish by cooking the turkey using your preferred method.


Why brine?

Brining will produce a more tender and flavorful turkey. The salt dissolves some of the protein in the muscle fibers and allows the meat to absorb the brine. This allows the turkey to retain moisture during cooking.



Brine your turkey approximately 1 hour per pound. If you leave the turkey in the brine longer, rinse it well after removing it from the brine. Then continue with step 6.


Suggested Preparation:

  1. Stuff the cavity of the turkey with aromatics such as sliced apples, oranges, garlic, onions, and herbs.
  2. Place the turkey in a roasting pan, breast side up.
  3. Rub the outside and under the skin of the turkey with an herbed butter.
  4. Cover and bake at 325˚ F until the internal temperature of the thigh reaches 170˚ F (about 4 hours).
  5. Allow to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before carving.
  6. Discard the aromatics used to stuff the cavity.