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Lemon-Herb Roasted Turkey

Lemon and thyme are the predominant flavors in this golden, tender and moist turkey that has just six ingredients. It's so easy, we guarantee success! —Felicia Smith, Georgetown, Texas
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. Bake: 2-1/4 hours + standing
  • Makes
    16 servings


  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 turkey (14 to 16 pounds)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons pepper
  • 1 medium lemon, halved
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • 14 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 24 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 turkey-size oven roasting bag


  • Preheat oven to 350°. In a small bowl, combine the butter, lemon juice, lemon zest and minced thyme. Pat turkey dry. Sprinkle salt and pepper over skin of turkey and inside cavity; brush with butter mixture. Place the lemon, onion, garlic and thyme sprigs inside cavity. Tuck wings under turkey; tie drumsticks together.
  • Place flour in oven bag and shake to coat. Place bag in a roasting pan; add turkey to bag, breast side up. Cut six 1/2-in. slits in top of bag; close bag with tie provided.
  • Bake at 350° for 2-1/4 to 2-3/4 hours or until a thermometer reads 180°. Remove turkey to a serving platter and keep warm. Let stand for 15 minutes before carving. If desired, thicken pan drippings for gravy.
    Freeze option: Freeze cooled turkey and gravy in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat through in a covered skillet, gently stirring and adding a little broth or water if necessary.
Nutrition Facts
8 ounce-weight: 525 calories, 27g fat (10g saturated fat), 230mg cholesterol, 489mg sodium, 3g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 0 fiber), 64g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • ahmom
    Apr 1, 2020

    This worked wonderfully. To answer the question if the gravy was good, I made chicken soup the next day with the leftovers. It was too lemony for my taste.

  • Cruella747
    Nov 30, 2019

    Nobody mentioned how the gravy was using this recipe. Has anyone tried it? TIA

  • Rmoney
    Nov 30, 2015

    We made this for Thanksgiving 2015 with an organic 16 lb bird from Costco. Hands down, the best turkey we have ever had. We plan to use this time and time again.

  • cooknfor9
    Nov 26, 2014

    This recipe is definitely a keeper. I used it last year and my entire family LOVED it!! It was so moist and flavorful!!. I will be making it again this year!

  • Sheryl76
    Nov 20, 2013


  • latj
    Nov 16, 2012

    No comment left

  • Grammy B
    May 6, 2012

    Yes, by all means try roasting turkey this way!!! I added celery leaves and the tough outer stalks to fhe other ingredients in the cavity and used a fresh turkey seasoning packet from the grocery store containing a few sprigs of thyme, rosemary and sage.I have also tried roasting the turkey breast side down on a rack (no oven bag) with great results (may need to increase roasting time). Lemon is the secret to the wonderful flavor.

  • jgrubin
    Nov 21, 2011

    No comment left

  • jenilovesdaisies
    Nov 17, 2011

    This was really easy and turned out perfectly. I added some fresh rosemary to the thyme since I had it on hand. Delicious!

  • Katy789
    Oct 25, 2011

    I made this turkey for my family and everyone raved on the flavors. This recipe is a keeper.