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Learn How to Cook the Perfect Turkey with Gravy.
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5 from 1 vote

Here's How to Cook the Perfect Turkey and Gravy

Turkey will be the star of your Thanksgiving dinner this year with this easy, nearly foolproof turkey recipe.
Prep Time1 d
Cook Time4 hrs
Total Time1 d 4 hrs
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Christmas, Holiday, Thanksgiving
Servings: 6 people, depending on size
Calories: 357kcal


  • 1 whole turkey thawed if frozen
  • olive oil or melted coconut oil, for rubbing the turkey
  • dry rub see recipe above
  • onion, celery, carrots, garlic cloves, lemon or orange wedges chopped (optional)
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

Turkey Gravy

  • neck, giblets, gizzards
  • 3 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon dry rub use the recipe above (under the heading "How to Season a Thanksgiving Turkey) or make your own mix!
  • 1/4 cup flour


  • Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  • Take the turkey out of the fridge while the oven is preheating. If you didn’t brine the turkey, remove it from the packaging and save the neck, giblets, and gizzards for making gravy and stock.
  • Set the turkey breast-side up on a roasting rack set inside a roasting pan. Tuck the wings behind the turkey and tie the legs together to help the turkey cook more evenly.
  • Rub the turkey skin all over with olive oil or melted coconut oil. Season the turkey with a dry rub (save 1 teaspoon for the gravy recipe) as desired (don’t add any extra salt if you used a brine). Stuff the turkey cavity with lemon or orange wedges, a few cloves of garlic, or a quartered onion, if desired.
  • Probe the deepest part of the turkey thigh or breast with a probe thermometer, wiggling it lightly to ensure it didn’t hit bone.
  • Place the onion, carrots, and celery below the turkey along the bottom of the roasting pan, along with the broth.
  • Slide the turkey into the oven with the legs positioned towards the back of the oven. The oven is generally warmer in the back, giving the dark meat the heat it needs to reach their higher temperatures.
  • Turn down the heat to 325°F. Roast for 3 to 4 hours,depending on the turkey’s weight, until the probe thermometer reads 170°F in the thigh or 160°F in the breast meat.
  • Resist the urge to open the oven while the turkey is roasting. It doesn’t need to be basted, and opening the oven will let out the heat, adding extra cooking time.
  • Save the turkey drippings for making gravy and let the turkey rest for at least 30 minutes before carving.

Turkey Gravy

  • While turkey is cooking, add ingredients to a pot and simmer for 1 hour.
  • Remove neck, giblets, gizzards and discard.
  • When turkey is done, add enough drippings to the stock to make 4 cups. Add more broth if needed.
  • Add flour and whisk until smooth and no lumps remain.
  • Place pot back on burner and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until desired thickness.


Serving: 6ounces, cooked | Calories: 357kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 51g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 155mg | Sodium: 306mg | Potassium: 667mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 129IU | Calcium: 36mg | Iron: 3mg |
SmartPoints (Freestyle): 9
SmartPoints (Freestyle): 9