Lemon-Thyme Roast Turkey with Pearl Onions and Pan Gravy Recipe


Servings: 12

3 lemons
3 cups thyme
18 lbs whole turkey
1/2 lb pearl onions
1/2 cup salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
6 cloves garlic
1 stick butter
1/4 cup flour
2 tbsp water
1/3 cup white wine
4 cups chicken stock


Small bowl
Baking sheet
Paper towels
Cutting board
Fine grater
Roasting rack
Roasting pan
Kitchen twine
Cooking spoon
Pastry brush
Food thermometer
Carving fork

Step 1

At least 1 day or up to 2 days before serving, brine the turkey. Combine the brown sugar and salt in a small bowl. Place the turkey on a baking sheet and pat dry. Coat thoroughly with the brining mixture. Transfer to the fridge to brine for least 1 or up to 2 days.

Step 2

On the day of serving, preheat the oven to 425°F. Zest and quarter the lemons and crush the garlic cloves. Carefully rinse and pat turkey dry, then transfer breast side-up on a roasting rack set inside a roasting pan. Add pearl onions to the base of the roasting pan. Stuff the turkey with thyme and lemons, then truss the turkey with kitchen twine. Add water to the roasting pan to cover the bottom by about ¼ in.

Step 3

Roast the turkey in the oven at 425°F for approx. 40 min. or until browned all over. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat with the garlic cloves, thyme, and lemon zest. Keep warm while turkey roasts.

Step 4

Once the turkey is browned all over, turn the oven down to 350°F and baste the turkey with the butter mixture every 15 min. Once the internal temperature of the thickest part of the breast reaches 150°F, (approx. 50 – 70 min. more) transfer turkey with roasting rack onto a baking sheet to rest for at least 30 min. or up to 1 hr. before carving. Reserve onions for serving and reserve drippings directly in roasting pan.

Step 5

To make the gravy, set the roasting pan with drippings over medium heat. Mix flour and water together thoroughly in a small bowl, then add to the pan drippings and whisk constantly until gravy thickens. Increase heat and add white wine. Add chicken stock a little at a time, whisking constantly. Season to taste with salt and pepper, transfer to a gravy boat and serve with turkey and onions. Enjoy!

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