Juicy Two-Stage Thanksgiving Turkey Marinade

Juicy Two-Stage Thanksgiving Turkey Marinade

jaclynfarr 1

"This recipe has two different marinades that are started on Tuesday morning. This is a marinade recipe only, and makes a pre-Thanksgiving marinade for a juicy turkey with lots of flavor."


2 d 25 m servings 814 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 15 servings



  • Calories:
  • 814 kcal
  • 41%
  • Fat:
  • 35.7 g
  • 55%
  • Carbs:
  • 27.1g
  • 9%
  • Protein:
  • 93.3 g
  • 187%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 268 mg
  • 89%
  • Sodium:
  • 7680 mg
  • 307%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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  • Prep

  • Ready In

  1. On the Tuesday morning before Thanksgiving, whisk together salt, orange juice, brown sugar, a cinnamon stick and water in a large nonreactive container with a cover, such as a large stainless steel stockpot. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve, about 5 minutes. Place the turkey into the brine, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
  2. The next day, remove turkey from the first marinade, shake off excess, and pat the bird dry. Discard the brine. Clean the stockpot or brining container.
  3. In the clean stockpot, make the marinade by stirring together together sliced oranges, sliced lemons, onion, green bell pepper, parsley, cloves, garlic powder, cinnamon sticks, paprika, olive oil, and pepper. Place the turkey into the stockpot and rub the marinade into the turkey. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  4. On Thanksgiving Day, remove turkey from the marinade and shake off the excess. Discard the remaining marinade. Roast the turkey using your favorite method.


  • Editor's Note
  • If there is not enough brine to completely cover the turkey, make additional. Do not dilute the brine with water, or the flavor will be weakened.
  • Always brine foods in a food-grade, nonreactive container such as a stainless steel or enameled stockpot, a brining bag, or a food-grade plastic bucket. Never use ordinary trash bags, plastic trash cans, or metal buckets or containers not meant for food use.
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Your rating



  1. 16 Ratings


This turkey marinade is awesome the taste it gives is undeniably the best i have EVER EVER EVER had including in the restaurants!!

My turkey turned out so well. It had an awesome flavor to it. I was scared that the brine was going to make it salty, but it didn't. It was very moist and tender. This is going to be ther only w...

This was really good! I had to double the recipe on the brine because I had a 27 pound turkey, but it was easy and it added a lot of flavor to the turkey. Family said that it was the best turk...

The first picture of this recipe is the turkey I made for Thanksgiving today! This is absolutely the best turkey I've ever made! It was so tender that the breast meat actually slid off of the ca...

Turkey was excellent! This redcipe made it juicy and flavorful. DH said this was the best turkey he'd ever had. And he is not a big turkey fan.

This is well worth the time. Great recipe wouldn't change a thing.

Just used this recipe for Christmas, 2008. Turkey was moist and very flavorful. I highly recommend it.

This did produce a tender turkey but I was sooo thirsty after eating it! And I tried to get off as much as the brine as I could. Also, the turkey picked up none of the flavor of the marinade wha...

Best brine method.. My turkey was great!