Savory Herb Rub Roasted Turkey

It’s Thanksgiving week and if you haven’t already started thinking about what you’re making for the big feast, it’s time!

I’m excited to share this wonderful recipe with you from McCormick! This is another installment of my Seasonal Seven Flavors posts that I’m sharing with you. I previously shared with you Brown Butter Gorgonzola Fries and Pork Chops with Parmesan Sage Sauce – all made with sage!

Every year, I create a Thanksgiving meal game plan which I’m sharing with you. It has my menu as well as a timeline for when to do what so I don’t have to try to remember EVERYTHING. I print this out and usually put it into one of those plastic sheet protectors. I go back to this plan all the time on Thanksgiving day. I also shared it on Google docs, so feel free to create a copy of it and use it as a starting point for your game plan.

One other thing that is really helpful, I have at the bottom all of the oven temperatures for all of my recipes – I have all of my recipes printed that I use throughout the day but it’s nice to have all of these times and temperatures laid out so I can reference them quickly.

Here’s my 2012 Thanksgiving menu:

Savory Herb Rub Roasted Turkey
Turkey Gravy
Bread and Celery Stuffing
My Favorite Mashed Potatoes
Potato Casserole
Autumn Vegetable Succoash – martha
Sweet Potato Casserole
Garlic & Olive Oil Sauteed Green Beans
Some Other Veggies (depends on what I see at the store)
Yeast Rolls

**Yes, I always have to have at least two kinds of potatoes at my Thanksgiving. ­čśÇ

Oh shoot, I just realized in my haste to get my plan together, I forgot about dessert! Adding that to my plan!

To make this wonderful savory herb rub roasted turkey recipe, first get all of your spices together and mix them up.

Prep the turkey on your roasting rack. I always rinse the turkey and then pat it dry with paper towels. Then, tuck the wings underneath and against the turkey. This helps to ensure your turkey cooks nicely and evenly.

All set!

How to make sure your turkey is moist

This recipe calls for putting half of the herbs, the cut up onion and bay leaves into the cavity of the turkey. I went a step further and added lemons. I ALWAYS stuff turkeys and chickens with lemons before roasting them. They don’t add a lemony taste but they do ensure your poultry is always moist.

Always, let your turkey rest at least 20-30 minutes before carving. Same with any meat or steak your cooking, always allow it to rest! The juices get redistributed back into the meat and you don’t have it all leaving your meat if you carve it or cut it too soon.

Enjoy and hope you have a happy Thanksgiving with your family and friends!

If you make any of recipes and decide to share them on instagram or twitter be sure to tag me @thelittlekitchn and use the hashtag #thelittlekitchenrecipes! I love seeing your posts and photos!

Savory Herb Rub Roasted Turkey Recipe

Fragrant herbs bring mouthwatering aroma and show-stopping flavor to this holiday favorite.

Note from The Little Kitchen - the only modification I made was, I added a quartered lemon to this recipe. I always roast turkeys and chickens with a lemon inside to help keep it moist!


2 tablespoons McCormick® Sage, Rubbed or McCormick® Poultry Seasoning

1 tablespoon McCormick® Paprika

1 tablespoon seasoned salt

2 teaspoons McCormick® Garlic Powder

1 teaspoon McCormick® Black Pepper, Ground

3/4 teaspoon McCormick® Nutmeg, Ground

1 whole turkey (12 to 14 pounds), fresh or frozen, thawed

1 large onion, cut into wedges

6 McCormick® Bay Leaves

1 tablespoon vegetable oil


Place oven rack in lowest position. Preheat oven to 325┬░F. Place roasting rack in shallow roasting pan. Mix sage, paprika, seasoned salt, garlic powder, pepper and nutmeg in small bowl.

Place turkey, breast-side up, in prepared pan. Sprinkle about 1/2 of the seasoning mixture inside turkey. Stuff with onion and bay leaves. Brush turkey breast with oil. Spread remaining seasoning mixture over entire surface and under skin of turkey. Add 1/2 cup water to pan. Cover turkey loosely with heavy duty foil.

Roast 1 hour. Remove foil. Roast 2 to 2 1/2 hours longer or until internal temperature reaches 165┬░F (175┬░F in thigh), basting occasionally with pan juices. Remove turkey from oven. Let stand 20 minutes. Transfer to platter or carving board to slice. Reserve pan juices to make gravy or to serve with turkey.

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Disclosure: This post is sponsored by McCormick. I love working with them and as always opinions are my own!

26 Responses to “Savory Herb Rub Roasted Turkey”

  1. 1
    Karly — November 19, 2012 @ 12:28 pm

    What a perfect looking bird!


  2. 2
    claire @ the realistic nutritionist — November 19, 2012 @ 2:54 pm

    AWESOME game plan, and amazing turkey!!


  3. 3
    Kelly Senyei — November 19, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

    So what time should I come over? You are amazing, Julie! I can only imagine what Thanksgiving is like in your home :)


  4. 4
    Cassie | Bake Your Day — November 19, 2012 @ 5:47 pm

    I do the exact same thing by way of dinner planning – I always try to plan backward so that everything is ready on time. This turkey looks perfect!


  5. 5
    Paula - bell'alimento — November 19, 2012 @ 6:21 pm

    I am so envious of your organization : ) And that bird. Swoon.


  6. 6
    Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies — November 19, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

    I think a game plan is definitely essential when you’re making so much food at once! I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, Julie!


  7. 7
    Rachel @ Baked by Rachel — November 19, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

    Gorgeous bird! I don’t think my family has let the turkey rest… ever! It’s out of the oven and immediately carved lol. My dad just can’t wait!


  8. 8
    Miss @ Miss in the Kitchen — November 19, 2012 @ 9:00 pm

    That is such a gorgeous bird! Happy Thanksgiving Julie!


  9. 9
    Jeanette — November 19, 2012 @ 10:57 pm

    Can I come over for Thanksgiving?! I put together a timeline for myself too just to make sure I’m on schedule. My boys and hubby love watching football on Thanksgiving, so timing dinner is important for them. Priorities!


  10. 10
    Gerry @ Foodness Gracious — November 20, 2012 @ 12:21 am’s this week!! ;0) Great looking turkey and I hope you have an awesome day!!


  11. 11
    marla — November 20, 2012 @ 12:24 am

    Great to see your game plan ~ now I just need to get as organized ­čśë


  12. 12
    Robin (Masshole Mommy) — November 20, 2012 @ 5:06 am

    Oh my goodness, can I come to Thanksgiving at your house? Haha. I feel like my menu is so bland compared to yours.


  13. 13
    Robyn | Add a Pinch — November 20, 2012 @ 8:01 am

    Gorgeous turkey, Julie!


  14. 14
    Carolyn — November 20, 2012 @ 8:01 am

    I’m terrible, I still haven’t figured out what I want to do for a Thanksgiving menu this year! Yikes! Your turkey is simply gorgeous.


  15. 15
    katie — November 20, 2012 @ 8:49 am

    Yum! Looks like you guys are going to eat well this Thanksgiving. I’ve yet to write down my exact to-do list (day-by-day, hour-by-hour)!


  16. 16
    Kathy - Panini Happy — November 20, 2012 @ 9:46 am

    Your menu sounds outstanding – is it too late to RSVP?! I need to create my game plan today – picking up the turkey this morning!


  17. 17
    Angie — November 20, 2012 @ 9:52 am

    What a perfectly roasted bird. Love it!


  18. 18
    Sommer@ASpicyPerspective — November 20, 2012 @ 11:44 am

    That is one good looking bird Julie! Love McCormick Poultry Seasoning–I use that all the time.


  19. 19
    Carlas Confections — November 20, 2012 @ 12:08 pm

    Love this turkey recipe! And I really love your game plan. I wish I would have done that. But I think I have it handled ok, lol. I just hope I dont realize I forgot something come Thursday… Next year I will come up with a better game plan, but if all else fails, I still have my pumpkin pie made already! ­čśÇ


  20. 20
    Linda | The Urban Mrs — November 20, 2012 @ 12:37 pm

    That looks amazing, really! Love the seasoning and how you put everything together.


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  22. 21
    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles — November 21, 2012 @ 9:37 am

    Beautiful bird, Julie! This is our first year hosting Thanksgiving…wow, I’m loving how organized you are. Have an awesome Thanksgiving!


  23. 22
    fabiola@notjustbaked — November 21, 2012 @ 1:19 pm

    This is one sexy bird! I have a prep list and all that as well. It makes these holidays so much easier. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!


  24. 23
    Erin @ Texanerin Baking — November 21, 2012 @ 3:42 pm

    I love how organized you are! I wish I weren’t working tomorrow and had a big Thanksgiving dinner to come home to eat. The turkey sounds great and love the added touch of the lemon!


  25. 24
    addie | culicurious — November 23, 2012 @ 3:43 pm

    Yum, this turkey looks delicious! :)


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