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Braised Apple Cider Turkey

  • 12 Servings
  • 1 hr Prep Time
  • 4 hrs 30 mins Total Time


  • For The Turkey:
  • 1 14-16 lb. Fresh Young Turkey
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and chopped
  • 2 apples, thick slices
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons thyme leaves
  • 3 tablespoons chopped rosemary leaves
  • Zest of 1 orange, plus orange itself, halved
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 3 cups hard apple cider
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • For The Gravy:
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 cups turkey or chicken broth
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Serving Size 3 oz. cooked turkey and 1/4 cup gravy
Amount Per Serving
Calories 240
Calories from Fat 140
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 25%
Saturated Fat 6g 30%
Trans Fat
Cholesterol 100mg 33%
Sodium 1140mg 48%
Total Carbohydrates 6g 2%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Sugars 2g
Protein 25g
Vitamin A 8%
Calcium 4%
Vitamin C 4%
Iron 8%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. This is a representation of the nutrition label. The actual nutrition label on the product may vary slightly.
  • Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 500°F. In a roasting pan, toss the melted butter, whole garlic cloves, butternut squash, apples, and onions together. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Step 2

    Mix together the room temperature butter, thyme, rosemary, orange zest, and minced garlic in a bowl. Place about 1/4 cup of salt and 2 tsps pepper in two small bowls. Get a piece of kitchen twine ready to tie the legs together. Place all of this close to the roasting pan, so you won't get turkey juices everywhere during the prep.
  • Step 3

    Remove the turkey from the bag. Locate and set aside neck and giblets package from inside the turkey cavity. Place the turkey on top of the vegetables. Cut a small slit in the skin above the cavity and gently work your hand between the skin and the breast meat. Spread the butter mixture under the skin, then rub it all over the breast, legs, thighs, and cavity of the bird. Sprinkle with Kosher salt. You probably won't need the entire 1/4 cup, but it should look like a light snow has fallen on the turkey. Follow that up with a sprinkling of pepper.
  • Step 4

    Stuff the cavity with the orange halves and a few onion and apple slices from the pan. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine and tuck the wing tips under the bird to protect them.
  • Step 5

    Place the turkey in the oven uncovered for 30 minutes, or until it is golden brown. Remove the turkey from the oven and lower the temperature to 350°F. Pour the chicken broth, hard cider, and apple cider into the pan, scraping up any bits at the bottom. Cover the breast meat with a small strip of parchment paper. Wrap the pan in foil. Place an oven safe or probe thermometer in the thickest part of the breast meat then return to the oven and continue to roast for 2-2.5 hours or until turkey reaches about 160°F. At that point, remove the foil and continue to roast until the thickest part of the breast reaches 165°F. Remove the turkey from the oven, tent with foil, and let rest for about 30 minutes prior to carving.
  • Step 6

    To make the gravy, strain the vegetables, reserving them and the liquid for another use. Skim the fat off the top of the liquid. You can use a gravy separator or place it in the fridge for a bit to make this process easier.
  • Step 7

    Place 1/4 cup of the fat in a pot over medium heat. If you weren't able to get a full 1/4 cup of fat, add enough butter to make 1/4 cup. Measure out 1/2 cup of the reserved liquid from the roasting pan and whisk it together with the cornstarch to form a slurry. Stir this into the fat in the pan, whisking until the mixture begins to thicken. Slowly stir in the broth and then the cider in a steady stream, alternating stirring and whisking. Continue to cook for another 5 or so minutes, or until the gravy is the consistency that you want. If desired, whisk in mustard and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve the turkey with the gravy.

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