Tarragon & Rosemary Turkey

Tarragon & Rosemary Turkey

The season of turkey is upon us! Being thankful for all the great people and things in our lives is truly hard work, let’s not overdo it. One day per year is plenty but this yearly day should be made truly plentiful! It’s not uncommon for this wonderful bird to be cooked maybe a little dry, maybe a little bland, maybe a combination of both. When this occurs many try to make up for the flavor and/or texture using various sauces and other toppings (and extra drinks). In fact many of the side dishes served alongside the turkey may seem to vanish before the turkey is even halfway gone. Oh no, what can be done? Well I’m here to tell you there is a solution to ensure the turkey will not only be juicy and flavorful but come out as the true star of the show. Without further ado let’s make greatness!

P.S.: Don’t complain that there’s too much butter. There isn’t “too much” butter. We have 1 lb. of butter for 12 lbs. of turkey which is nowhere near an end-of-the-world scenario. You could also use salted butter instead of unsalted but I always prefer controlling the salt levels at every step. Finally this is a holiday of plentifulness so nuff said.


  • 12 lb (5.4 kg) turkey
  • 1 lb (456 g) unsalted butter
  • 4 oz (113 g) tarragon
  • 2 oz (57 g) rosemary
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 2 apples
  • 1 large carrot
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1 large onion
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste


  1. If your turkey is frozen then unfreeze that bad boy.
  2. Cut the butter in small chunks and let it come up to room temperature so that it's easy to mix.Butter Chunks
  3. Roughly chop the apples, carrot, celery, and onion while also making sure to get rid of those apple cores.
  4. Evenly spread the carrot, celery, onion, and half of the apple chunks on the bottom of a roasting pan.
  5. Remove rosemary leaves from half of the bunch and finely chop them alongside half of the tarragon and 4 garlic cloves.
  6. Once the butter is warmed up and malleable add in the chopped tarragon, rosemary, and garlic as well as a few generous pinches of salt and pepper. Mix those together until you've got a wonderfully smelling homogeneous mix.Butter Mix
  7. Separate the skin from the breasts on the turkey using a soft utensil, such as a silicone spatula, as to not puncture the skin. As per the images below my turkey had a hole in its skin by default :(Separate Breast Skin
  8. In between the skin and breasts stuff in about 2/3 of the butter mixture while pushing it around to spread it evenly all across the breast meat.
  9. Place the turkey breast-side down and spread part of the remaining butter all over the back then season well with salt and pepper so that the entire back surface is evenly covered.
  10. Turn the turkey on its back and fill the inner cavity with the remaining garlic, tarragon, rosemary, and apple.
  11. Spread the remaining butter on the topside of the turkey as well as seasoning with salt and pepper.
  12. Fold the wings behind the turkey so that they don't burn up while roasting.Butter Turkey
  13. Place the turkey inside of a preheated oven at 325 f (163 c) and roast for roughly 18 minutes per pound (456 g) or until the turkey reaches an internal temperature of 165 f (75 c). Make sure to rotate the roasting dish a few times while in the oven to cook the turkey evenly. You can also baste it once in a while, that wouldn't be a bad idea.
  14. Once the turkey is nice and cooked take it out of the oven and let it rest for roughly 30 minutes before cutting.


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