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Cooking With Wine - Roast Turkey


Our blog series on cooking with wine takes us on a culinary adventure with Janet’s recipe for Roast Turkey – just in time for Thanksgiving dinner planning.

We’re excited to be doing our first guest post by Janet Feirin, Red Seal Baker and author of The Spelt Bakers Pan Loaves.

Before we begin, there’s one thing that we find really handy and that’s to know a few things up front. First, how long will it take to prep, cook, set aside, refrigerate, etc. before it’s ready to eat? Second, how many people will it serve? Lastly, the grocery list.


Nice to know details

As a general rule, allow for:

  • 10 – 15 minutes preparation
  • 3 – 4 hours roasting in oven
  • 15 – 20 minutes resting time
  • 15 minutes cooking on stovetop
  • Serves lots of people with leftovers


Grocery List

  • 2 large onions
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup carrot
  • 1 branch of fresh rosemary
  • 1 branch of fresh thyme
  • 1 branch of fresh sage
  • 1 turkey (butter infused or add butter under the skin of the turkey breast yourself)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 bottle of white wine (A Grapes 2 Wine white blend works well)


Prepare the aromatics

This recipe is for an unstuffed turkey.

First, you’ll prepare the aromatics which will add so much flavour and aroma to the dish.

  • Slice 2 large onions
  • Mince 6 garlic cloves
  • Cut carrots into 2 inch pieces
  • Place these ingredients along with 1 branch each of fresh rosemary, thyme and sage in the bottom of the roasting pan
  • Place the roasting rack overtop


Prepare the turkey

  • Remove the neck and giblets and reserve for another use
  • Place the buttered turkey breast side down on the roasting rack
  • Pour a bottle of white wine over the turkey and into to roasting pan
  • Sprinkle salt and pepper over the turkey and surround with vegetables to taste


Roast the turkey

  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Put the lid on the roasting pan and place it in the preheated oven
  • Roast for the appropriate amount of time for an unstuffed turkey (see Tips below)
  • When the turkey is finished, remove it from the roasting pan
  • Flip the turkey over and cover it with tin foil to keep warm
  • Let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes


Make the gravy

  • Remove the vegetables and herbs from the bottom of the roasting pan, leaving as much juice behind as possible
  • Save the vegetables and herbs for making turkey stock with the leftover bones the next day
  • Add 1 cup of water to the roasting pan and scrape up all the bits form the bottom of the pan
  • Make a thin paste with flour and water to thicken the gravy, making sure there are no lumps
  • Slowly add the paste to the pot of liquid and cook until bubbles appear at the sides
  • Continue to cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly



  • This one is worth showing off, so take it to the table to slice
  • Serve with plenty of sides such as steamed vegetables, salad, roast potatoes, crispy Brussels sprouts, yam casserole and stuffing
  • Share with friends and family



We recommend serving this meal with the same dry white wine used in the recipe. It’s always best to serve the same wine used during cooking. This helps to enhance both the flavours in the dish and also the wine.



  • Roast a 10 to 12 pound turkey for 3 to 3 and 1/4 hours, a 12 to 16 pound turkey for 3 and 1/4 to 3 and 1/2 hours and a 16 to 22 pound turkey for 3 and 1/2 to 4 hours
  • If using a convection oven, reduce time by 25%
  • Instead of using 1 cup of water when making the gravy, you can boil the neck and giblets and use 1 cup of the water from those
  • To make the gravy, you can do it in the roasting pan or a smaller pot
  • Use the leftover bones and turkey to make turkey broth, pot pies, turkey black bean chili, and rice or pasta casseroles


We hope you enjoy this guest post on Cooking With Wine – Roast Turkey


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