Mouthwatering Roasted Turkey Recipe for Thanksgiving Dinner

Are you looking for a recipe that will have your whole family begging for seconds this Thanksgiving? Look no further than this old-fashioned roasted turkey with gravy recipe. This classic roast turkey is the perfect centerpiece for any holiday meal, and the rich, savory gravy covers every inch of the tender, juicy meat.

This old fashioned roast turkey recipe is exactly what you need to bring all those nostalgic memories back to life. Imagine the scent of a perfectly roasted bird filling up your kitchen, the sound of the crispy skin as it’s sliced straight from the bird, and the warm taste of mouthwatering gravy poured over everything on your plate.

This recipe takes us back to basics and lets us focus on flavor, using simple ingredients like butter and poultry seasoning. While some may argue that new twists on classic dishes are exciting, it’s hard to beat the old-fashioned way in terms of taste and satisfaction.

Plus, this recipe is adaptable enough that you can add your own personal twist with variations like herbed stuffing and fresh cranberries in the gravy. Whether you’re cooking for a family gathering or just craving some comfort food, this old-fashioned roasted turkey with gravy recipe is sure to become a favorite in your recipe box for years to come.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Old-Fashioned Roasted Turkey With Gravy
Old-Fashioned Roasted Turkey With Gravy

Are you tired of the same old turkey recipe every Thanksgiving? Look no further than my old-fashioned roasted turkey with gravy recipe.

One of the reasons you’ll love this recipe is because it is a classic roast turkey that is made the old-fashioned way. You’ll be transported back in time to when your grandmother used to make this turkey for holiday dinners.

Another reason to love this recipe is the herbed stuffing that pairs perfectly with the juicy and savory turkey. This stuffing includes fresh parsley, yellow onion, celery ribs, carrots, and ground sage. It will definitely impress your guests and have them asking for seconds.

But it’s not just about the flavor – this recipe also ensures perfect crisp skin that is essential for any roast turkey. By covering the turkey with cheesecloth while roasting, the skin locks in moisture and creates that desirable crispy texture. Trust me, it’s worth the extra step.

And let’s not forget about the gravy. This old-fashioned gravy covers the turkey chops and creates a rich and flavorful sauce using only four tablespoons of butter, all-purpose flour, chicken broth, water, salt, pepper, and drippings from the roasted turkey.

In addition to being a crowd-pleaser at Thanksgiving dinner, this recipe can also be enjoyed year-round for any special occasion or Sunday family dinner. Once you try this recipe, it will become a staple in your kitchen for years to come.

Ingredient List

 A juicy and tender turkey, perfectly roasted to golden perfection
A juicy and tender turkey, perfectly roasted to golden perfection

Before heading to the grocery store, let me walk you through the list of ingredients needed for this old-fashioned roasted turkey with gravy recipe. You will need fresh parsley, yellow onion, celery ribs, carrots, butter, chicken broth, pepper, ground sage, poultry seasoning, garlic powder, salt, all-purpose flour, fresh cranberries and water. And of course, the star of the show: a 14-16 lb whole turkey! In addition to these main components, this recipe also calls for stuffing. You can choose to make your own herbed stuffing or buy a pre-made one. Don’t forget that we’ll also need your favorite seasonings such as mixed salt (1/2 tsp) and pepper (2 tsp). So get your shopping list ready and let’s start cooking!

The Recipe How-To


  • Preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C).
  • Remove giblets and neck from turkey cavities; discard or save for another use. Rinse turkey inside and out under cold running water; pat dry with paper towels.
  • Lightly stuff main cavity with herbed stuffing.
  • Fold the wings under the body; tie legs together securely. Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack in a large roasting pan.
  • Brush turkey skin with melted butter or oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and 5 teaspoons poultry seasoning.


  1. Cover with foil and roast for about 2 hours, or until meat thermometer reads 170°F (77°C) in the thickest part of the thigh.
  2. Uncover and roast 30 minutes longer or until internal temperature reaches 180°F (82°C). During these last 30 minutes, baste frequently with turkey drippings.
  3. To ensure even browning, rotate pan every 30 minutes while turkey is roasting.

Turkey Gravy

  • Remove turkey from roasting pan; tent loosely with aluminum foil. Let stand 15 minutes before carving.
  • While turkey is standing, prepare gravy in pan; discard any remaining fat from pan.
  • In medium saucepan, whisk 1/4 cup all-purpose flour into 4 tablespoons melted butter over medium-high heat. Continue whisking until flour turns golden brown. Slowly stir in 4 cups chicken broth and/or water; whisk to incorporate flour mixture into liquid. Cook gravy until thickened to desired consistency, stirring occasionally. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Tip: For richer flavor and deeper color, feel free to mix in some gravy covers turkey cheesecloth roast.

Substitutions and Variations

 The rich aroma of roasted turkey wafting through the kitchen
The rich aroma of roasted turkey wafting through the kitchen

Now, let’s talk about some substitutions and variations to give this old-fashioned roasted turkey recipe a new twist. Remember, cooking is an art, and you can always mix and match ingredients to create an entirely new flavor profile.

Firstly, if fresh parsley is not available, you can use dried parsley flakes instead, but remember to reduce the quantity by half as dried herbs can sometimes overpower the dish. Similarly, if fresh cranberries are out of season or not available in your area, substitute them with canned cranberry sauce.

For a healthier version of this recipe, you can replace butter with olive oil or coconut oil. Additionally, for a gluten-free option, substitute all-purpose flour with cornstarch or rice flour.

To make the gravy vegetarian-style, swap chicken broth with vegetable broth or use water instead. Add some chopped mushrooms sautéed in butter for a rich umami flavor.

If you want to add some more flavors to the turkey, try stuffing it with a herbed stuffing. You can also brine the turkey overnight for extra moistness and flavor.

Alternatively, try adding sliced apples or pears to the roasting pan along with onion and celery for a fruity twist on the classic roast turkey.

Lastly, experiment with different spices like smoked paprika or cumin to give your turkey an international makeover.

Remember that switching things up is part of cooking and there are endless variations you can try to make your old-fashioned roasted turkey unique and truly yours.

Serving and Pairing

 The golden-brown skin of the turkey, crackling with flavor
The golden-brown skin of the turkey, crackling with flavor

When it comes to serving and pairing this old-fashioned roasted turkey with gravy recipe, there are plenty of options to consider. You can go with classic side dishes like roasted sweet potatoes, caramelized brussels sprouts, green beans almandine, and fresh cranberry sauce. You can also serve a hearty stuffing made with old-fashioned bread or even add in some herbed stuffing for extra flavor.

For those who prefer lighter options, a bright arugula salad paired with a tangy vinaigrette works as the perfect match. You can also opt for roasted root vegetables or a simple quinoa salad on the side. Remember, the goal is not just to have perfectly cooked roasted turkey but to create a well-rounded meal that satisfies everyone’s taste buds.

But what about wine? This roasted turkey pairs best with medium-bodied red wines like Pinot Noir or Beaujolais Nouveau. If you prefer something white, go for a crisp Chardonnay. A sparkling cider or non-alcoholic apple cider also pairs well with this autumnal feast.

Lastly, it’s essential to make sure that the turkey gravy covers the entire plate. It adds moisture to the dish while highlighting the savory taste of the turkey. The gravy covers turkey like a warm blanket on a cold winter day – it’s simply non-negotiable. Trust me; you’ll want all the flavors to come together in every bite.

So pull up a chair and enjoy this classic roast turkey old-fashioned way served with homemade gravy, delicious sides and paired perfectly with your favorite bottle of wine or bubbly cider. It’s a meal that brings warmth and coziness to any occasion- Thanksgiving dinner, Christmas feast or just because!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A mouthwatering turkey feast, waiting to be devoured
A mouthwatering turkey feast, waiting to be devoured

Listen up, cooking enthusiasts! Want to know how to make the most of your old-fashioned roasted turkey leftovers and experience its flavors on days to come? Fear not, as I’ve got some tips for you.

If you’re planning ahead, you can make this roasted turkey recipe up to two days before serving. Once it has cooled down, simply remove the turkey from the pan and separate the meat from its bones. Wrap it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it in your fridge until you’re ready to feast again.

But wait, there’s more! The gravy can also be prepared ahead of time. Once the big day arrives, all you need to do is reheat it in a saucepan over low heat while whisking frequently. Make sure to reserve some extra gravy for reheating when needed – trust me, you’ll be glad you did.

Now, let’s say you don’t want to keep things simple by reheating it as-is. No problem at all! The old-fashioned roasted turkey is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in many different ways. For instance, you can slice the meat thinly and use it as sandwich filling paired with fresh cranberries or even try adding it to your favorite salad recipe.

Another option is stuffing leftover turkey into a sheet pan and letting it roast with some veggies, giving it new life as an oven roasted turkey dish. Alternatively, shred leftovers and mix them into a comforting bowl of soup alongside some homemade croutons or serve on top of mashed potatoes.

There are no limits to how you can use your old-fashioned roast turkey when stored properly! What are you waiting for? Get those leftovers out and start experimenting in the kitchen – who knows what delicious combinations await!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Delicious homemade gravy, the perfect complement to the roasted turkey
Delicious homemade gravy, the perfect complement to the roasted turkey

There’s nothing quite like the smell of a roasting turkey on Thanksgiving Day, but getting that perfectly cooked bird takes some finesse. Here are some tips to make sure your old-fashioned roasted turkey comes out just right:

1. Start with a fresh turkey – freshness ensures the best flavor and texture of your roasted turkey.

2. Rinse and pat dry – take the time to rinse and pat dry your turkey with paper towels before seasoning it.

3. Brine it overnight – consider brining your turkey overnight to ensure maximum flavor and moisture.

4. Season well – coat the whole bird in a mixture of salt, pepper, ground sage, poultry seasoning, and garlic powder for taste that will impress even the most critical of guests.

5. Stuff with fresh herbs – add some extra flavor by stuffing your turkey with fresh parsley, celery ribs, and carrots before roasting.

6. Make sure to truss – tying up your turkey’s legs will help keep it moist and juicy as it cooks.

7. Roast breast-side down – positioning the bird this way helps ensure the juices distribute evenly throughout both the white and dark meat.

8. Baste regularly – basting every 30 minutes with butter or broth helps keep the bird moist while also adding extra flavor.

Follow these tips from cooking experts such as Cook’s Illustrated, America’s Test Kitchen and Cook’s Country to achieve that perfect balance between irresistibly crispy skin and juicy meat in your old fashioned roast turkey recipe.

Bottom Line

So there you have it, the old-fashioned roast turkey with gravy recipe! A classic Thanksgiving centerpiece that will make your guests want to gobble more. Now, I know that roasting a whole turkey may seem intimidating and time-consuming, but trust me, it’s worth every minute.

With its juicy and flavorful meat, crispy skin, and comforting gravy, this recipe is a surefire way to impress your loved ones and create lasting memories. Plus, you can always customize it to your liking by adding different herbs and spices, stuffing variations, or even trying out a turkey breast instead of a whole bird.

Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and give this old-fashioned recipe a try. Your taste buds will thank you later. And remember, at the end of the day, what really matters is spending quality time with your nearest and dearest and enjoying the gift of good food.

So go ahead, fire up your oven, grab your apron, and let’s make this Thanksgiving a memorable one with an old-fashioned roasted turkey with gravy that is sure to impress. Happy cooking!

Old-Fashioned Roasted Turkey With Gravy

Old-Fashioned Roasted Turkey With Gravy Recipe

Get ready for Thanksgiving! When you make this, start cooking the giblets, neck and vegetables the last 45 minutes of baking.
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Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 6 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 1 turkey
Calories 747.8 kcal


  • 1 (14 -16 lb) whole turkey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons mixed-up salt, divided (I use Jane's Krazy Original Mixed-Up Salt)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons poultry seasoning, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground sage
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 5 (14 ounce) cans chicken broth, divided
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 3 celery ribs, sliced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup water


  • fresh parsley
  • orange slice
  • fresh cranberries


  • Remove giblets and neck from turkey, and chill for gravy. Rinse turkey with cold water; pat dry with paper towels.
  • Combine 1 teaspoons each mixed-up salt, garlic powder, poultry seasoning, sage, and pepper; sprinkle cavity and outside of turkey with mixture.
  • Place turkey, breast side up, in a large roasting pan, tucking wingtips under. Pour 2 cans chicken broth into roasting pan; drizzle melted butter over turkey.
  • Bake, uncovered at 450°F for 1 hour. reduce heat to 425°F, shield with aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning. Bake 3 1/2 to 4 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted in thigh registers 180F, basting every 45 minutes with pan drippings.
  • Bring remaining 3 cans broth, neck, giblets, carrots, and next 3 ingredients to a boil in a saucepan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 45 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  • Remove turkey to a serving platter, reserving drippings in roasting pan. Skim excess fat from drippings in pan, if desired.
  • Pour giblet mixture through a wire-mesh strainer into drippings in roasting pan, discarding solids. Bring to a boil in roasting pan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly to loosen browned bits on bottom of pan.
  • Stir together flour and 1/2 cup water until smooth; add to giblet mixture, and over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, 10 minutes or until thickened. Stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoons each of mixed-up salt, garlic powder, and poultry seasoning. Serve with turkey. Garnish if desired.

Your Own Notes


Serving: 499gCalories: 747.8kcalCarbohydrates: 7.5gProtein: 83.8gFat: 39.9gSaturated Fat: 13.9gCholesterol: 283.7mgSodium: 1171.9mgFiber: 0.9gSugar: 1.6g
Keyword Kid-Friendly, Meat, Poultry, Sauces, Very Low Carbs, Whole Turkey
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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