Chef Bob's Recipe for the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey Brine with Essential Oils

Turkey Brine with Essential Oils

Essential Oils are a Perfect Compliment to a Turkey Brine!

I love brining poultry! It’s a great way to eliminate the impurities, and infuse flavors

Chef Bob's Recipe for the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey Brine with Essential Oils

into the bird. For extra flavor, we are adding essential oils to the brine this year. I suggest a Thyme or Rosemary oil. Rosemary is great for digestion, and what better day to get a little help with that “stuffed” feeling than Thanksgiving! Additional oil suggestions are Lemon Oil and Black Pepper Oil.

This recipe is designed for a 20-pound bird, but you can downsize it for smaller turkeys, or perhaps just the breast, which is what I will be serving this year. The bin for brining doesn’t need to be fancy–just clean and able to hold water. A cooler makes a great container for brining, if you have one large enough. It needs to hold the turkey, a large amount of liquid, and 5 pounds of ice. The temperature must stay below 40 degrees to prevent the growth of bacteria.

Make sure to allow yourself plenty of time for the poultry to brine. I recommend 24 to 48 hours. Do not reuse the brine afterwards–it should be discarded because it pulls the impurities from the meat. It’s an ancient process that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves. I say no Holiday bird is complete without first going through a brine!

Visit our partner, Molly Beumee, to learn more about doTerra essential oils, and to purchase the oils used in this recipe, as well as many others.

Turkey Brine

Category: Essential Oils Recipes

Servings: Poultry Brine

Chef Bob's Recipe for the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey Brine with Essential Oils

Brine for the perfect Thanksgiving Turkey.


  • 3 Lemons
  • 3 Oranges
  • 1 large diced Onion
  • 3 c. Kosher Salt
  • 3 Tbsp. Black Pepper
  • 2 c. Sugar
  • 10-12 oz. Dried Cranberries
  • 6 Bay Leaves
  • 4-5 cloves of Garlic
  • 1 bottle White Wine
  • Fresh Herbs (Cook's choice)
  • 2-3 drops of Thyme essential oil


  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients, except wine and fresh herbs.
  2. In a large pot, bring one and a half gallons of water to a boil.
  3. Add combined ingredients, and boil for 5 minutes.
  4. Let cool. If time is of the essence, set pot in an ice bath, stirring until cooled.
  5. Place turkey in a large plastic waterproof container, such as a large cooler or plastic bin with a lid.
  6. Pour brine over turkey, add fresh herbs, essential oil, and wine, and enough water to cover turkey. Add 5 lbs. ice. Turkey must maintain a temperature below 40 degrees for 24 to 48 hours. Check every 6 hours, stir, and add ice as necessary to maintain temp.
  7. After 24-48 hours, remove turkey. Discard brine. Rinse and clean turkey, and prepare for roasting.


Instructional how-to video:

Nutrition Facts

Turkey Brine


Amount Per Serving
Calories Yes
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0
Saturated Fat 0
Trans Fat
Cholesterol 0
Sodium 0
Total Carbohydrate 0
Dietary Fiber 0
Vitamin A Vitamin C
Calcium Iron

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

 How to Brine Poultry

If it’s your first time brining, here’s a short how-to video demonstrating the process. You’ll love the result!

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