How To Cook A Thanksgiving Turkey At Home
Serves: varies
  • One 15 - 20 pound Turkey
  • 1 Lemon , cut into 6 slices
  • 1 Orange, cut into 6 slices
  • 1 Yellow Onion , peeled and quartered
  • 8-10 Sprigs Fresh Thyme
  • 2 Sprigs Fresh Rosemary
  • 4 Leaves Fresh Sage
  • 1 Stick Salted Butter, softened to room temperature
  • 6 Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp. Chopped Italian Parsley
  • 1 tbsp. Fresh Thyme Leaves
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper to taste, about 1 tsp.
  1. Thaw turkey in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours for every 5 pounds. Example: If you have a 15-pound turkey you should thaw it in the refrigerator for at least 3 days. I usually do 4 days though to ensure its FULLY thawed.
  2. While the oven preheats, take turkey out of its packaging and remove the neck and giblets from the cavity. Pat turkey dry with paper towels and place it on a roasting rack in a roasting pan. Allow to come to room temperature as you prepare other ingredients.
  3. Whip together all ingredients for the herbed butter in a medium bowl and set aside.
  4. Season the inside of the cavity with salt, pepper and some herbed butter. Then, stuff the cavity with lemon, orange, yellow onion and fresh herbs. Make sure to tuck the wings under the bird to prevent them from cooking too fast.
  5. Using your fingers, loosen and lift the skin on the top of the turkey (where the breast is). Rub a few tablespoons of herbed butter underneath the skin.
  6. Melt the remaining butter and brush all over the legs, wings and remaining exterior of the turkey.
  7. Wash hands and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  8. Plan on roasting the turkey for roughly 15 minutes per pound, or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. Every 30 – 45 minutes, baste turkey with drippings in the bottom of the pan. About halfway through, cover the turkey with foil to prevent overcooking the breast.
  9. Once your timer has finished, make sure to use a thermometer to ensure the turkey is fully cooked before removing from the oven.
  10. Remove turkey from the pan and place on a large serving platter or cutting board. Tent with foil and allow it to rest for at least 20 minutes (or up to 40 minutes). Enjoy!
Recipe by Slice of Jess at