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Turkey Brining

edited 10:30PM in EggHead Forum
I would like to brine my turkey this year for Thanksgiving. For those who have tried brining, what container did you use that will accomodate a 14 lb. turkey and that will also fit in the fridge for 24 hours. Any suggestions?


  • Cindy,
    Look in the section at Walmart that has storage containers, some are for cloths, toys, filing, etc. The one I found that 20 lb hams and turkeys both fit in was oval with a lid and I think for filing. It was made out of clear plastic and a blue top.

  • Cindy, you need around a 20 qt pot or stainless container. Julie Appledog has posted her brine recipe that won two championships in a row on turkey ; it may be in the archives by is really good. On the EGG, UNBELIEVABLE!!

  • I have used plastic tubs 12 quart for small birds, and 18 quart for a 20 pounders. These are available at most kitchen supply stores
  • Cindy,
    Last year I just used an ice chest. Threw in some ice cubes to keep it cold and left it in the garage. Worked out great![p]AG

  • J AppledogJ Appledog Posts: 1,046
    Cindy, I use a 5 gallon plastic bucket. If it's cold I just put it in the garage. Otherwise I take it to a local restaurant and have them store it in their cooler. JCA

  • J Appledog,[p]Those big white buckets that are used for dry wall mud or deli pickles also work well...and the lid is airtight...The local paint store here sells them for about $10.[p]
  • WessBWessB Posts: 6,937
    You may want to check and see if they are safe for food use, my bet is that they are NOT.......[p]Wess

  • WessB,[p]I'm still standing but that could be due to high intake levels of alcohol. Again, there are the same buckets they sell to restaurants that contain pickles, pre-boiled eggs and pre-cut vegetables...
  • Sandlapper,[p]Beekeepers also use them for storing and selling honey in higher pound quantities

  • WessBWessB Posts: 6,937
    I`m not saying that they are definately bad, just that I would be surprised if they were food grade coming from a paint store...then again I could be totally wrong and they all use the same type of bucket...dunno...go with what works for you..[p]Wess

  • WessB,[p]Good point....I'll check the label and report back.[p]Thanks

  • WessB,[p]The guy is probably not a genuis but several sites say UNUSED and unpainted ones are okay for food use[p][p]Where do you get 5 gallon buckets? They hold pickles, paint, blacktop sealer, stain, drywall mud (aka joint compound), and more. Get them from fast food restaurants, companies who seal asphalt, paint and drywall contractors. Hardware stores may have some empty ones. Don't store drinkable water or food (which will touch the bucket walls) in the ones that have been used for paint, asphalt sealer, etc. It may not wash out completely and will taint your water. Do not let food or water touch the sides of buckets which have not held food. [p]Could not find anything on FDA site

  • Cindy,
    I wash the insides of a small cooler and dump the bird and brine in. Throw in a couple of blue ice thingamajigs and leave it on the porch. Be sure and air dry the bird for a while to get a crispier skin.

  • BBQfan1BBQfan1 Posts: 562
    Agreed. A good quality, clean cooler works fine, especially in cool climates with some ice added. Just cut back on the water content of the brine a bit to compensate for the extra added ice.

  • tn slagamater,
    Any idea as to where I could find that recipe for the turkey brine? Looking for something new to try, this sounds like a keeper.

  • Dave Lewis, check your e-mail. It also in the archives....

  • BBQfan1,[p]Right about the reduction of water if you're diluting the solution. Thats why I use the blue ice stuff. It keeps the temps lower longer (sleep time). Be sure and wash them and the cooler off before reusing.

  • Cindy,
    Williams-Sonoma sells brining bags -- plastic bags large enough, they say, to hold a 23 pound turkey. Joan and I are going to try one this year. Since the sides are flexible, we think the turkey and brine will fit in our refrigerator. [p]****

  • Sandlapper,[p]My soap comes in 5 gallon containers. The soap is in plastic bags, I just dump soap into mixing container, rinse out bucket even though there has rarely been any leakage of powered soap. Man would I love to get $10 a piece.[p]CWM
  • J AppledogJ Appledog Posts: 1,046
    Sandlapper, I use pickle buckets. JCA

  • Car Wash Mike,[p]LOL

  • J Appledog,[p]Exactly

  • It sounds as if an ice chest is the best alternative for me, as I live in Miami so just sitting a bucket in the garage or outside won't do in this heat and a 5 gal. bucket won't fit in the fridge. Thanks for all your ideas.[p]GO CANES!
  • Cindy,
    There are food grade plastic containers (don't use just any plastic container. You want to use HDPE Food Grade plastics. Here is a very good aricle on the subject:[p]If you don't have room in a frig a small cooler with brine solution and frozen water bottles to keep it cold will work.
    Have extra frozen bottles ready to add as the other thaw.
    Hope this helps.

    [ul][li]Food Safe plastics[/ul]
  • Cindy,
    I use a large stock pot, its good because you can put it on the stove and heat the brine to disolve the salt and sugar, take it off to cool, put the bird in and put the lid on. Add ice and stick it outside (assuming its cold outside), or clear out the bottom of the fridge and put it in there

  • Zippy,
    Do you know what if any is the maximum size turkey you can cook in a large egg? We are planning to do our turkey on it this year for the first time and I'm wondering how big a turkey the egg will accomodate.
    Any thoughts you have would be appreciated!

  • QBabeQBabe Posts: 2,275
    Cindy,[p]If you take out one of the shelves, a 5 gallon bucket will fit in most fridges. That's how we did it last time.[p]Best of luck. Brining a bird makes it incredibly moist and tender and you'll be amazed at how good it turns out.[p]Tonia

  • Beth,
    Good question. I weighed in on this subject only because I have been successfully brining turkeys for years, however, always cooked in the oven. This too will be be my first year in the egg. However, from what I have read on numerous other posts, I understand a 20lb turkey or even larger will fit. Good luck

  • Cindy,
    The guy on the food channel the other night, used one of the big 5 gallon orange on the outside, white on the inside water cooler. Good size and a spigot for draining. He tossed in some ice and just set it outside.

  • NessmukNessmuk Posts: 251
    Luckily I escaped bacteria problems when I brined in buckets & coolers in the garage.[p]Now, I buy the 2.5 gallon, plastic bags with a zip lock & only brine in the frig. You have to be careful as there is alot of weight with the turkey & fluid at 8 pounds per gallon.[p]I set the turkey & bag in a plastic trash bag for safety. Before I discovered the zip lock, the seal opened & the brine flowed out during the night.[p]I brine overnight.[p]Good luck.[p]Nessmuk

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