Brine for Chicken and Turkey

Brine for Chicken and Turkey

The Spruce / Julia Estrada

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Brining time: 8 hrs
Total: 8 hrs 25 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
378 Calories
1g Fat
98g Carbs
1g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 378
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 1%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 60718mg 2,640%
Total Carbohydrate 98g 36%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Total Sugars 89g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 2mg 11%
Calcium 347mg 27%
Iron 2mg 12%
Potassium 278mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Brining chicken, turkey, and other poultry is a great way to add flavor and moisture to the meat before cooking it. This easy brine recipe can be used for brining a whole turkey breast, a whole chicken, or a whole turkey.

In its simplest form, brine is a solution of salt in water. Generally, for brining chicken, turkey and other poultry, we add sugar and a few simple spices.

When you add your poultry to the brine solution, the liquid should be icy. Room temperature brine can be a food safety hazard.


  • 1 gallon water

  • 1 cup kosher salt

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns

  • 1 tablespoon whole allspice

  • 8 cups ice

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for brine

    The Spruce / Julia Estrada

  2. Combine the water, salt, sugar, peppercorns, and allspice in a large stockpot. Stir to dissolve the salt and sugar.

    Combine water, salt, peppercorns in a pot

    The Spruce / Julia Estrada

  3. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat. Allow the brine to cool completely.

    brine in a pot

    The Spruce / Julia Estrada

  4. Add the ice and then immerse the turkey breast or whatever item being brined. Weigh it down if necessary.

    turkey, ice and brine in a pot

    The Spruce / Julia Estrada

  5. Transfer to a refrigerator for 8 hours or overnight.

    turkey, ice and brine in a covered pot

    The Spruce / Julia Estrada

  6. Remove the turkey breast and rinse it thoroughly, when ready to roast. Pour out the brine solution at this point. Cook turkey, per recipe instructions.

    turkey patted dry with a paper towel

    The Spruce / Julia Estrada