Classic Roast Turkey Recipe

Turkey has always been the star of thanksgiving. While there have been many roast turkey recipes invented throughout the years, nothing beats the simplicity of this good old classic roast turkey recipe.

I used a smaller turkey for this recipe which is about 14 to 16 pounds. I tried using small sized turkey because it cooks faster and it has more flavor compared to bigger ones. Although, I must admit that turkey has a mild taste. That is where our spices come in – they make the turkey taste better.

This recipe calls for a mixture of butter and spices to be inserted in between the skin and meat of the turkey. I do this by trying to separate the skin and meat on the breast end near the cavity and gently work my fingers to widen the opening until I can arrange the butter mixture. You can also do an incision to separate the skin and meat if you are having a hard time.

The rest of the mixture needs to be brushed all over the turkey. Since this roast turkey recipe does not require brining, we are using water and aluminum foil to keep the turkey moist. The celery and rosemary in the cavity gives this roast turkey a good taste and aroma.

Try this Classic Roast Turkey Recipe. Send us your feedback.

Classic  Roast Turkey Recipe

Classic Roast Turkey Recipe


  • 1 (16 lb.) turkey, thawed; neck and gizzards removed from the cavity
  • 1/4 cup salted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup chopped celery stalk
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup water

Cooking Procedure

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Clean the turkey by placing under running water while gently rubbing the skin and cavity. Drain and pat dry with a paper towel.
  3. Combine butter, sage, thyme, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
  4. Place half of the butter mixture in between the skin and the meat of the turkey. Do this by creating an incision on the lower breast and then insert your finger to separate the skin and meat.
  5. Arrange the chopped celery and rosemary inside the cavity of the turkey and then tie the end of the legs together using a kitchen twine.
  6. Brush the remaining butter mixture all over the turkey.
  7. Place the turkey in a roasting rack and then put-inside the oven.
  8. Roast for about 20 minutes and then pour water on the roasting pan.
  9. Reduce the temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  10. Cover the turkey with aluminum foil. Continue roasting for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
  11. Remove the foil and then roast the turkey for 30 to 45 minutes more.
  12. Arrange in a serving plate. Serve with turkey gravy.
  13. Share and enjoy!

Number of servings (yield): 12

Panlasang Pinoy Cookbook Download a FREE copy of the Panlasang Pinoy eCookbook Volume 1. Register now!

Enter your email address:

Related Content