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5 from 5 votes

Easy Juicy Roast Turkey

This Easy Juicy Roast Turkey is the best turkey recipe to make for Thanksgiving or Christmas. Use my no-fail tips for a moist and delicious holiday turkey!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, British, Canadian, Christmas, Holiday, Thanksgiving
Keyword Easy Juicy Roast Turkey
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Resting Time 15 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 12 people
Calories 346kcal
Author Chrissie

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 7 pound whole turkey about 3.2 kilograms
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic pressed or finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon chopped rosemary fresh or dried
  • 1 teaspoon chopped thyme fresh or dried
  • 2 teaspoons chopped parsley fresh is best, but dried also works
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper (or more if desired)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 large white or yellow onion
  • 1 lemon
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 handfuls fresh parsley

Instructions

  • If your turkey is frozen, be sure to defrost it completely before beginning. The day before I'm going to roast the turkey, I take the turkey out of the freezer (about 24 hours in advance) and defrost it in a sink of cold water all day, changing the water as necessary (to keep it cool). Then, I place the turkey in a large bowl (to catch any drips) in the fridge overnight.
  • Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit when your turkey is defrosted.
  • Remove the neck, the giblets or any bag that is inside the turkey and rinse it well with cold water. Pat it dry with paper towel on the outside.
  • Place the turkey in a roasting pan on a rack. If you don't have a rack for your roasting pan, simply place a few halved onions, carrots and celery stalks under the turkey to raise it off the bottom of the pan (discard these vegetables after roasting).
  • Roughly chop the onions, lemon, garlic and parsley and stuff them into the empty inside of the turkey.
  • In a small bowl, stir together the butter, garlic, rosemary, thyme, parsley, pepper and salt.
  • Very carefully, pull the skin of the turkey breasts away from the breast meat, sliding your hand under the skin. Using your hands, smear some of the butter mixture under the breast skin as far as you can without breaking the skin.
  • Rub the rest of the butter mixture all over the outside of the turkey, making sure to coat it well.
  • Using kitchen twine, tie the ends of the turkey legs together and cut off any excess twine.
  • Place the turkey in the oven and let roast for about 20 minutes per pound at 325 degrees Fahrenheit (just over 2 hours for a 7-pound turkey).
  • Use a meat thermometer to check the doneness after 2 hours by inserting it into the thickest part of the thigh, wing and breast, being sure not to touch any bones (for an accurate reading).
  • Once the turkey reads 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celsius), remove it from the oven and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before carving.
  • Discard the onions, lemon, etc. that you used to stuff the turkey.
  • Carve the turkey after it has finished resting by removing the drumsticks and wings, slicing the breast meat and the dark meat on the underside of the turkey.
  • Serve immediately (for best results) or store in an airtight container in the fridge for serving later (reheating instructions in the notes section of this recipe).
  • Save the pan juices from the roast turkey to make my delicious homemade gravy RECIPE HERE.

Notes

After roasting and carving, this turkey meat will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. 
To reheat simply microwave, or splash a few tablespoons of chicken broth or water in the bottom of an oven-safe dish, place all the sliced turkey in on top, cover with aluminum foil and reheat until warm.
Be sure to pay attention to the size of the turkey in this recipe (7 pounds) - if you're roasting a bigger bird (14 pounds), simply double the recipe and follow the same 20-minutes-per-pound roasting rule, and don't forget to check the doneness by using an instant read thermometer!
Looking for a delicious gravy recipe for this roast turkey? Try my delicious homemade gravy recipe HERE.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 346kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 41g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 156mg | Sodium: 310mg | Potassium: 472mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 398IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 2mg