This Juicy Cajun Butter Turkey is perfect for the holiday season. With over 25 million social media views web-wide, everyone loves @themoodyfoody’s Viral Cajun Butter Turkey Recipe. Don’t miss out on this delicious Holiday Star! Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite times of the year. Not only do I love teaching many foodies how to cook, I also love when family and friends can come together and relax, catch up and enjoy food and cocktails. Special recipes like this can help keep memories alive or make new ones.Jump to Recipe
Is this Turkey Easy to Make?
Thanksgiving turkeys can be intimidating, and I’m going, to be honest- they aren’t what I would consider “easy.” I went into this recipe thinking I would give you guys a, fool-proof turkey recipe, and if you follow these steps, like many others, you’ll have the perfect Turkey. Making the perfect turkey requires prioritizing the juiciness, ensuring the skin stays juicy, and maximizing flavor.
Patience is mandatory for this recipe! PLAN AHEAD.
What is Cajun Butter Turkey?
Cajun butter turkey is a delightful twist on the classic roast, infusing a southern charm into your Thanksgiving feast. Picture this: a succulent turkey, generously coated in a rich blend of Cajun spices and a velvety buttery goodness. This fusion creates a symphony of flavors, where the warmth of traditional Cajun seasonings meets the savory tenderness of the bird. The result is a juicy, flavor-packed turkey with a hint of smokiness and a buttery finish that elevates the dining experience. It’s a Southern-inspired culinary adventure that’ll have your taste buds dancing with delight.
Ingredients You’ll Need to Make the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey
- 1 12-15lb Fresh Turkey
- Celery Stalks
- Aromatice (Thyme, Rosemary, Sage)
- White Wine (any dry white wine is fine)
- Chicken Broth
Equipment and Tools You’ll need
- A Roasting Rack, This is the One I love.
- Cheesecloth (This step is highly recommended for a juicy turkey) Use this brand and this kind!
- A turkey Injector, This is the best one!
- A Meat thermometer, I like this one!
Order everything ahead of time! Amazon delivery times vary during holidays and, grocers are always sold out of these products!
How to Make Cajun Butter Turkey
- Start by Dry Brining your turkey the night before. Cover your turkey with kosher salt. Rub it in. Let it sit in the fridge overnight over-covered. DO NOT RINSE THE DRY BRINE
2. Make your Compound Butter using spices and fresh herbs! I like to use rosemary, sage, thyme and oregano (optional)
3. Smother your room temperature turkey in the room temperature Compound Butter
4. Start the cooking process, then, inject your turkey!
4. Lay your Buttered up Cheesecloth over your Turkey
5. Cook until your Turkey reaches an internal temperature of 165, degrees
- Dry brine your turkey the night before you will cook it!
- Take your turkey out of the fridge 2 hours before cooking to allow it to reach room temperature
- Let your turkey cool for an 45 minutes before slicing!
Why everyone loves this Cajun Butter Turkey Recipe
It’s JUICY– Everyone hates turkey because it has the reputation of being dry! This turkey using multiple techniques to guarantee juiciness. The compound butter over and under the skin, the injection and the basking are a triple threat to making the juicy wet and delicious!
It’s packed with flavor- Mix it up this year with this a delicious Cajun Compound Butter. This butter has tons of spices and herbs that elevate the turkeys flavor.
It’s Gorgeous- I’m sorry but there is nothing like a beautiful bird on the Thanksgiving table. For many, it’s a tradition, and it’s one that should be followed out. The Thanksgiving turkey is the star of the show. When cooked correctly it can be a great base for building your plate.
What does Cajun Turkey taste like?
Cajun turkey is moist, and juicy with a buttery, smoky, flavorful inside! It is rich in flavor and texture. The turkey will not be spicy, but will be flavorful and delicious.
Let’s Make it Together; follow @themoodyfoody on TikTok
@themoodyfoody Cajun Butter Turkey ? this was a labor of LOVE #thanksgiving #turkeyrecipe #thanksgivingrecipes ♬ Nothing Even Matters (feat. D’Angelo) – Lauryn Hill
Tips to making the perfect Thanksgiving Turkey
Use a fresh turkey, (if possible)- Using a fresh turkey removes one of the most annoying steps- defrosting your turkey! Defrosting a turkey can take days, and it’s often why so many turkeys come out dry (they haven’t fully thawed out). So instead, find a fresh turkey at your local supermarket and butcher!
Dry Brine (optional but recommended)- If time allows, I recommend you dry Brine your turkey. Dry brining is ideal because it guarantees crispy skin, and it’s much easier than a wet brine:
- Ensure your turkey is at room temperature and pat it dry.
- Take 1 tbsp of kosher salt per 5 lbs of turkey and rub it in generously.
- Allow your turkey to sit in the refrigerator for 6 hours or overnight.
- DO NOT RINSE THE DRY BRINE OFF OF THE TURKEY
Once you remove your turkey, it may be a purple-ish color.
If you use a wet brine, pat your turkey dry! You will need dry, room-temperature skin to make sure your skin is crispy!
Nail your compound butter- The Cajun compound butter is the secret to this juicy turkey. The rich and smoky flavors of the compound butter not only give the turkey an amazing flavor but also makes the turkey look beautiful! Make sure your butter is at room temperature. (You cannot use margarine or shortening for this recipe) Once your butter is soft, add all your seasonings and herbs to your butter and mix thoroughly. Your cajun butter should be a nice vibrant orange color, if needed, add more paprika or cajun seasoning!
If you don’t like cajun seasoning, feel free to omit!
Ways to make Your Turkey Perfect
Inject your turkey- Injecting your turkey is highly recommended. Unfortunately, Turkey gets an unfair rep. As chicken’s older cousin, turkey can be juicy; it requires a little more work. Injecting your turkey with the leftover cajun butter ensures soft, juicy meat. You can buy a turkey injector on amazon!
Use a cheesecloth– A cheesecloth is a great way to keep the moisture in the skin while making sure the meat stays juicy. Soaking the cheesecloth in the cajun butter really takes the meat to the next flavor! Julia Childs invented this technique and although I was apprehensive, I gotta admit, I am IMPRESSED! Depending on the size of the cheesecloth you get, you may have to cut the cheesecloth! Make sure it fits over the turkey!
Use a meat thermometer- As I’ve mentioned before, a meat thermometer is a mandatory kitchen tool that can save you so much time and ensures your meat comes out perfect. A meat thermometer is highly RECCOMEND for this recipe and all of my meat recipes. Here is the thermometer I like to use! . Cook your turkey at 325 degrees and check the temperature every 45 minutes after the first hour!
Using a Roasting pan- A roasting pan is necessary because it allows the air from the hot oven to circulate! Using a roasting pan also helps you build a bed for your turkey drippings, which makes my famous gravy! You can find a roasting pan at any major retailer, but here’s the one I like to use!
CAJUN BUTTER TURKEY FAQ
What if I don’t have a cheesecloth, what can I use?
My personal recommendation endation would be to skip the cheesecloth step and bask your turkey in the cajun compound mixture every 45 minutes.
Should I cover my turkey?
No. At no point do you need to cover your turkey. Both the brining and the cooking process call for the turkey to be uncovered.
Can I wet brine my turkey instead of dry brining?
Sure. Although I highly recommend dry brining for a crispy skin. Wet brining is another popular brining method. Make sure your turkey is completely dry before starting the cooking process!
Can I make my turkey ahead of serving?
I recommend starting your turkey approximately 4-5 hours before dinner time. The compound butter can be made the night before!
Do I rinse off the dry brine?
No. The turkey should not be rinsed after.
How long do I cook my turkey?
I suggest you use a thermometer, but a turkey needs 15 minutes per lb. Most turkeys cook in 3-4 hours. Once your turkey is at 165 degrees, your turkey is ready
HELP! I bought a pre-brined turkey! What should I do?
Skip the brining step in this recipe! Make sure your turkey is patted dry and room temperature
If you loved this recipe, it would mean the world to me if you scrolled below and left a review. This helps me grow my business. I am eternally grateful .Love you
Juicy Cajun Butter Turkey
- 1 Roasting Pan
- 1 pack of cheese cloths
- 1 meat thermometer
- 1 turkey injector
- 1 12-15lb Turkey Preferably fresh. About 1 lb per person!
- 2 Yellow Onions Chopped Large
- 3 large Carrots
- 2 lemons
- 4 Celery Stalks
- 16 oz Chicken broth or Turkey Stock If your local butcher has turkey stock, pick it up!
- 4 oz White cooking wine any dry wine (I use chardonnay)
For the Cajun Compound Butter
- 2 lbs Unsalted Butter room temperature
- 1 tbsps Fresh Rosemary chopped fine
- 1 tbsps Fresh Oregano chopped fine
- 1 tbsps Fresh Thyme chopped fine
- 1 tbsps Fresh Sage chopped fine
- 1 tbsp Cajun seasoning
- 1 tbsp Smoked Paprika
- 1 tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
- 1 tsp pepper
- salt to taste remember, you've already dry brined your turkey so use your best judgement regarding salt! TASTE!
For the Dry Brine
- Kosher Salt 1 tbsp for every 5 lb of Turkey
- Dry Brine turkey the night before. Pat your turkey dry and season generously with kosher salt. Let it rest in the fridge for up to 6 hours or, preferably overnight. Take your turkey out a few hours before starting the cooking process to allow it to come to room temperature. Do not rinse the turkey.
- Make your compound butter. Allow butter to come to room temperature and mix all spices and herbs into the butter and set aside. Your compound butter should be a nice orange color, if needed, add more paprika or cajun seasoning!
- Take your room temperature turkey, Separate skin from breast and leg carefully. Use a spatula and try not to rip the skin. Take tablespoons of compound butter and rub it underneath of the skin, carefully.
- Next, smear a thick layer compound butter on the top of the turkey. Make sure you get the legs and wings, and the back. You should use about half of your compound butter mixture here.
- Place half your carrots, lemons, onions and celery into the cavity of your turkey, and then, use kitchen rope to tie the legs
- Add the other half of your lemons, onions, celery and carrots to the bottom of your roasting pan along with your chicken broth and white wine. Place the rack inside of the roasting pan and lay your turkey on top.
- Cook your turkey for 45 minutes at 400 degrees, remove from the oven and bring the oven tempertaure down to 325 degrees
- Melt the rest of your compound butter, and soak your cheese cloth inside. Depending on the size od your cheesecloth you may have to cut it to fit your turkey. Your cheesecloth should cover the top of the turkey including the wings!
- Then, fill up your turkey injector with the melted compound butter. Inject your turkey in about 8 spots. Inject each thigh, breast, leg and wing until your butter finishes. If you have extra butter, fill the injector up and keep injecting!
- Then, lay your buttered up cheesecloth over your turkey and cook for 2-3 more hours checking the temperature every 45 minutes. Make sure your cheesecloth is tight and snug to your turkey, almost like a wet T-shirt on a body. LOL
- After the first hour, remove your turkey and use the last of the compound butter to bask the turkey. (Do not remove the cheesecloth).
- Let your turkey cook until the breast has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Your turkey must rest a minimum of an hour before slicing.
- Use the turkey drippings to make my famous gravy recipe! See recipe page!
- Enjoy with your favorite people!