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Chef John's Roast Turkey and Gravy

Chef John's Roast Turkey and Gravy

  • Prep

    1 h
  • Cook

    3 h 45 m
  • Ready In

    4 h 55 m
Chef John

Chef John

The biggest myth in all of American cookery is the belief that a juicy, perfectly cooked turkey is difficult for the novice cook to achieve. One of the secrets to a moist, delicious, and beautiful turkey is spreading butter under the skin. You can season the butter any way you want; the possibilities are endless.

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Ingredients {{adjustedServings}} servings

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Original recipe yields 16 servings

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Nutrition

Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 942 kcal
  • 47%
  • Fat:
  • 70.1 g
  • 108%
  • Carbs:
  • 4.6g
  • 1%
  • Protein:
  • 68.7 g
  • 137%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 256 mg
  • 85%
  • Sodium:
  • 974 mg
  • 39%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
  2. Mix 2 tablespoons salt, and 1 tablespoon pepper, and poultry seasoning in a small bowl. Tuck turkey wings under the bird, and season cavity with about 1 tablespoon of the poultry seasoning mixture. Reserve remaining poultry seasoning mix.
  3. Toss the onion, celery, and carrots together in a bowl. Stuff about 1/2 cup of the vegetable mixture, rosemary sprigs, and 1/2 bunch sage into the cavity of the turkey. Tie legs together with kitchen string. Loosen the skin on top of the turkey breast using fingers or a small spatula. Place about 2 tablespoons butter under the skin and spread evenly. Spread the remaining butter (about 2 tablespoons) all over the outside of the skin. Sprinkle the outside of the turkey with the remaining poultry seasoning mix.
  4. Spread the remaining onion, celery, and carrots into a large roasting pan. Place the turkey on top of the vegetables. Fill the pan with about 1/2 inch of water. Arrange a sheet of aluminum foil over the breast of the turkey.
  5. Roast the turkey in the preheated oven until no longer pink at the bone and the juices run clear, about 3 1/2 hours. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, near the bone should read 165 degrees F (75 degrees C). Remove the foil during the last hour of cooking. Baste the turkey with the pan juices.
  6. While the turkey is roasting, make stock: place neck, heart, and gizzards in a saucepan with the bay leaf and water. Simmer over medium heat for 2 hours. Strain the turkey giblets from the stock, and discard giblets. There should be at least 4 cups of stock.
  7. Remove the turkey from the oven, cover with a doubled sheet of aluminum foil, and allow to rest in a warm area for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing. Pour the pan juices, about 3 cups, into a saucepan and set aside. Skim off the turkey fat from the pan juices, reserving about 2 tablespoons.
  8. Heat 2 tablespoons of the turkey fat and 1 tablespoon butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Transfer the onion from the roasting pan into the skillet. Cook and stir until the onion is browned, about 5 minutes, then stir in the flour. Continue to cook and stir for about 5 minutes more; whisk in 4 cups of the skimmed turkey stock and the reserved pan juices until smooth; skim off any foam. Stir in the balsamic vinegar. Simmer until the gravy is thickened, whisking constantly, about 10 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon of chopped sage, and season to taste with salt and black pepper.
  9. All done! Now take a photo, rate it, and share your accomplishments!
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Reviews

Dawn
34

Dawn

4/22/2012

I was in charge of making the turkey this last Thanksgiving and I came across this recipe. I followed the recipe exactly and I have to say it was the best Turkey we've ever had. Everyone was amazed how moist and flavorful the turkey was. This will be my turkey recipe for now on. It was perfect, I won't change a thing!

BOOKMARKER
23

BOOKMARKER

2/10/2012

Only a partial review, BUT the simple herb coating is FABULOUS! It coats the skin well enough that it doesn't burn or need covering; &, of course, tastes delicious! I combined recipes which basically means, I used olive oil on, & some butter in the turkey. Also put an apple inside - & a T of the seasonings. I used a cup of apple juice & a cup of water in the pan. Gravy was dark, but very good. When turkey time comes again, I'll follow the recipe better. :)

bigmamacamper
13

bigmamacamper

11/22/2012

This really was easy for a first-time turkey girl! I am not a cook, in fact, I think of myself as a terrible cook and I wanted to simply buy the frozen slab of turkey meat for Thanksgiving last year. But my bossy little sister forced me to try to make a "real" turkey. So she taught me how to search all recipes and we found this. It was FANTASTIC. Everyone loved our turkey, even my fussy "no-processed-food-ever-amazing-cook-sister". I am going to use this every year!!!! The turkey really does stay incredibly moist and it was delicious. Make sure to search the for the video. Last year it was linked right there with the recipe, but this year I had to do a google search to find it. His step by step easy to follow video really helped.

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