Savory Herb Turkey Rub

Herb turkey rub ingredients

The Spruce / Claire Cohen

  • Total: 10 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Servings: 6 servings
  • Yield: 3/4 cup
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
563 Calories
55g Fat
16g Carbs
2g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 563
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 55g 71%
Saturated Fat 8g 40%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 4828mg 210%
Total Carbohydrate 16g 6%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Protein 2g
Calcium 238mg 18%
*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.)

This savory wet rub is perfect for turkey. With fresh rosemary, sage, thyme, onion, garlic, and white wine, the combination of flavors with a touch of acid adds delicious savory flavor to the meat. Worcestershire sauce adds a punch of umami, as does a touch of balsamic vinegar. And since all you have to do is chop up the fresh ingredients and combine them, it's an easy way to make your turkey dinner centerpiece extra special.

Make the rub a day ahead of time for the best flavor. This recipe makes enough herb rub for one medium turkey, but you can also use it on a large chicken. The herbs marry well with traditional stuffing if you're making a holiday meal. Regardless of the bird or the occasion, make sure you get the rub under the skin to really season the turkey well.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 teaspoons onion (minced)
  • 4 teaspoons garlic (minced)
  • 4 teaspoons rosemary (fresh, chopped)
  • 4 teaspoons thyme (fresh, chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon white wine
  • 1 tablespoon ​balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sage (fresh, finely chopped)
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl and mix well, until the olive oil is well incorporated into the rest of the rub.

  3. Pat the turkey dry with paper towels and apply the rub all over the bird, including the cavity. Make sure to get it under the skin of the breast.

  4. Discard any leftover rub that has come into contact with the raw meat.  

  5. Roast the turkey using your favorite method or recipe. Enjoy.

Recipe Variation

If you are interested in using some of this wet rub as a baste, simply prepare the recipe as directed but split the mixture in half. Use half as indicated above. Place the other half in a bowl and add 1/2 cup of water, white wine, or broth. Stir to combine. Halfway through cook time, begin basting with the mixture. Do so every 15 to 20 minutes until the turkey is almost done. Discard any remaining baste.

Tips

  • The rub will be easier to apply if you chop the aromatics and herbs very finely.
  • We suggest making the mixture a day before using to let the flavors combine appropriately. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.

What Is the Best Way to Season a Turkey?

There are a few methods for seasoning a turkey, including brining, basting, and using a rub. Applying a dry or wet rub with flavorful ingredients like herbs as well as salt helps to give the bird more flavor. For the best results, apply a rub underneath the skin where possible.