The Perfect Roast Turkey
The centerpiece of your holiday meal, the turkey is one dish you want to get just right — and with this foolproof recipe, you can roast a beautiful, succulent turkey every time.
1 fresh or thawed frozen turkey (neck and giblets removed)
Freshly ground pepper
1 medium onion
1 large carrot
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Rinse turkey with cold water, drain well, and pat dry with paper towels. Season inside the cavity with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Stuff cavity with onion and carrot, and tie legs together using butcher’s twine.
- In a roasting pan fitted with a rack, place turkey breast side up. Rub butter under and over skin. Rub skin with 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Loosely tent turkey with heavy-duty aluminum foil.
- Roast turkey for 1 hour, then baste with pan juices. Roast for 1 more hour; then remove and discard foil and baste. Continue roasting, basting turkey every 30 minutes until an instant-read thermometer reaches 170 degrees F when inserted into thickest part of thigh, 3 1/2 to 4 hours total.
- Let turkey rest for 20 minutes, cut off butcher’s twine, and remove carrot and onion from cavity and discard. Drain any juices from cavity into roasting pan and transfer turkey to a serving platter. Serve with gravy.
Tip: If you plan to brine your turkey overnight, check out our brine recipes at countryliving.com.
Tip: For extra flavor, replace butter, salt, and pepper with olive oil and an herb rub.
TOTAL TIME: 4:00
YIELD: 8 servings