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Learn how to inject a turkey for extra flavor and moisture by following my recipe for the best Turkey Injection Recipe! Using a butter turkey injection creates the most tender turkey meat. You will not believe your turkey’s flavor!
I look forward to the holiday season every year – especially cooking turkey! Turkey is one of my favorite main course meals, so I relish having the chance to prepare it. The only issue with cooking turkey is it can be easy to accidentally overcook the meat and have it dry out.
By using my savory turkey injection, you can cook a moist and tender turkey without any need for brining. The turkey butter injection will add richly flavorful seasoning to the meat while also keeping it moist. Best of all, you can cook your turkey however you like!
Whether you’re roasting a Thanksgiving turkey with turkey dry rub, smoking turkey, cooking a turkey on the grill, or even making a turkey in the Instant Pot, this butter injection recipe will enhance your turkey’s flavor.
Butter Injection for Turkey Ingredients
- Salted butter, melted butter
- Old Bay seasoning
- Garlic powder
- salt (optional) if you use unsalted butter
- Black pepper or white pepper (optional)
Sometimes I have also used lemon juice for a bit of citrus flavor.
Recipe for Injecting Turkey
- Melt salted butter in the microwave. Add it to a bowl with Old Bay seasoning, paprika, and garlic powder. Mix until thoroughly combined.
Injecting Turkey with Butter
- Take half the mixture into your meat injector or syringe and inject it evenly into both thighs and sides of the turkey breast. Use the remaining half of the mixture to baste the turkey every 30 minutes throughout the cooking process.
For more info on turkey cooking times and temps, including times for different sizes of deep-fried turkey, look at my Turkey Temperature Chart!
Injecting a Turkey Variations
- Cajun Turkey Injection using Cajun Seasoning
- Italian Herb Injection by adding Italian Seasonings
- Turkey Injection Marinade uses olive oil, balsamic vinegar, basil, thyme and oregano. Turkey Marinades are wonderful injections.
Turkey Injection Recipe FAQs
You can inject turkey with a mixture of butter, spices, and herbs. In the case of my butter injection recipe, use a mixture of salted butter, Old Bay seasoning, paprika, and garlic powder. I recommend stuffing the bird with herbs and citrus. If you’re cooking a Spatchcock Turkey, you can season the outside of the bird with your regular seasoning and herbs in addition to the injection rather than stuffing.
You can inject a butterball turkey using this butter injection recipe. Inject the thigh and breast on each side of the turkey for the best results.
Inject the turkey with the butter turkey injection before cooking, then baste the turkey on the outside with the same mixture throughout the cooking process for best results – do not inject it while it is cooking.
The best place to inject a turkey is in both sides of the breast, and both thighs. This will give you the best results and juiciest meat.
Injecting a turkey helps keep the meat from drying out and will make the meat juicier as if it were brined.
Turkey Internal Temperature
Top tip for cooking turkey: No matter what method you use, the internal temp for turkey will read 180°F with an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh and 170°F when inserted into the breast. When measuring internal turkey temperature, always use a meat thermometer.
|How Long to Roast Turkey
|feeds less than 10 people
|Roast for 3-3.5 hours at 350°F (unstuffed)
|feeds 10 to 15 people
|Roast for 4.5-5 hours at 350°F (unstuffed)
|feeds 16 to 20 people
|Roast for 4-4.5 hours at 350°F (unstuffed)
|feeds more than 20 people
|roast for 4.5-5 hours at 350°F (unstuffed)
Best Turkey Recipes
Turkey Injection Recipe
See our Cooking Conversions Chart for help converting measurements!
- Melt butter in a small dish in the microwave. Add all spices to it and mix well.2 Sticks of Salted Butter, 2 Tablespoons Old Bay, 2 Tablespoons Paprika, 2 Tablespoons Garlic Powder
- Take half of the mixture and inject it into the breast and thighs of the bird, saving the other half for basting throughout the smoking process.
- I use a mix of Old Bay seasoning, paprika, and garlic powder for incredible flavor in my turkey. However, you can mix up the ingredients to create any kind of seasoning mixture you’d like. Using garlic powder rather than minced garlic, you could even create a garlic butter turkey injection following my garlic butter recipe.
- For best results, inject the turkey in both sides of the breast and both thighs.
- You can use a butter injection for turkey following any turkey recipe.