This roasted Cajun turkey is flavored with a seasoned butter mixture. It is spicy, sweet, tender and absolutely amazing!
I just found out that I won’t be cooking this Thanksgiving. It’s bitter sweet. I enjoying cooking for my whole family; bringing every one together over the holidays is a job I relish; it makes me happy. But….not having to clean and prep the house that will be wrecked the minute I start cooking sounds sort of amazing right now.
But YOU may have to cook this Thanksgiving which is why I am excited to share this cajun turkey recipe with you today. I was recently given the opportunity by Honeysuckle White (Shadybrook Farms) to visit a turkey farm. This very recipe was inspired by that trip. I traveled to Texas to meet the owners of Bar G Turkey Farm where I saw with my own eyes the love and care those little turkey’s receive. What struck me was the level and passion and devotion the farmers had for the turkeys and for the land (which has been a part of their family for 100 years). This farm that I visited is just one example of the “team” behind Honeysuckle White; there are over 700 other family farmers who give the same care and hard work. Connecting with the family behind a product I buy regularly meant a great deal to me.
Turkeys are easy, they just take time. I made my own cajun seasoning for this recipe (you could use a premixed), took out about a tablespoon and combined the rest with softened butter. I rinsed and cleaned out my Honeysuckle Turkey (raised without growth antibiotics, hormones and steroids) and I gently cut away the skin from the meat and tucked the butter mixture in between. This step really locks in that cajun flavor. It will also crisp up the skin. The remaining seasoning was rubbed over the turkey. I stuffed the turkey with a mix of veggies. These will not be eaten but will add so much moisture to the turkey. I like to baste with chicken broth, but it not necessary.
When it comes to cook time, plan on having your turkey in the oven for 20 minutes per pound.
Cook low and slow; keep the oven temperature at 325 for the duration.
Pop up timers can’t always be trusted. Insert a meat thermometer into the meatiest part of the turkey; if it registers 165 degrees, then it’s time to take the turkey out. If you find that your turkey is browning quicker than it’s cooking, then place foil over the top.
After taking your turkey out of the oven, allow it to rest for 10 – 20 minutes. This will allow the turkey juices to redistribute.
Perfect side suggestions to this cajun turkey: easy cornbread stuffing, sauteed brussels sprouts, easy scalloped potatoes and sweet potato biscuits. Leftover turkey? This Turkey Pot Pie is perfect for leftover turkey!
- 1 16 lb Honeysuckle White Turkey, thawed
- 1/4 cup softened butter
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon dried paprika
- 1 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons melted butter (optional)
- 1 green pepper coarsely chopped
- 1/2 onion, coarsely chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 14 oz can chicken broth
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly coat the rack of a roasting pan and set aside.
- Remove the giblets and the neck from turkey, pat the turkey dry with a paper towel and place the turkey, breast side up on the roasting rack.
- In a small bowl, combine the thyme, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, Cayenne pepper, chipotle chili powder, salt, black pepper and sugar. Combine the seasoning mixture (reserving a tablespoon) with softened butter.
- Cut a pocket between the skin and the meat. Work the butter mixture in the pocket; working it in between the legs and wings the best you can.
- Rub remaining seasoning mixture over the turkey. Drizzle melted butter this over the on the outside of the entire turkey. if you want your skin to be golden and crisp (warning, your oven will be a little smoky from the butter; just a heads up)
- Place cut vegetables inside the turkey cavity. Pour chicken broth into the bottom of the pan.
- Turkey should take 4 to 4 ¼ hours or until meat thermometer reaches 165 degrees when inserted into the thigh. If turkey begin to brown too soon, place a loose piece of foil over the turkey.
- Remove turkey and allow it to stand for 20 minutes before carving.
Amount Per Serving Calories 912Total Fat 38gSaturated Fat 13gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 23gCholesterol 506mgSodium 746mgCarbohydrates 4gFiber 1gSugar 1gProtein 130g