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Butter Herb Roasted Turkey

Butter Herb Roasted Turkey

A Thanksgiving classic. We roast this turkey with fresh herbs, dry white wine and plenty of butter to keep it moist and create a delicious golden brown bird. 

Read the Story Behind the Recipe

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30 min
Prep Time
04 hrs 30 min
Total Time


Basting Liquid

1 pound Land O Lakes® Butter

1 bottle (750ml) dry white wine, such as Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc

Turkey and Herbs

1 (10- to 15-pound) whole turkey, fully thawed

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon pepper

2 medium onions, halved, quartered

1/2 cup Land O Lakes® Butter with Canola Oil

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage leaves

1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme


2 square yards cheesecloth

How to make

  1. STEP 1

    Melt 2 cups butter in 4-quart saucepan over medium-low heat. Remove from heat; stir in wine. Set aside.

  2. STEP 2

    Remove turkey from plastic bag. Remove neck and giblets from cavities. Set giblets aside to use in gravy, if desired. Rinse turkey thoroughly with cold running water. Drain; pat dry with paper towels.

  3. STEP 3

    Heat oven to 450°F.

  4. STEP 4

    Place turkey on rack in shallow roasting pan, breast-side up. Salt and pepper inside of turkey with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Stuff turkey with onion pieces. 

  5. STEP 5

    Combine Butter with Canola Oil, parsley, rosemary, sage and thyme in small bowl. Butter outside of turkey, gently lifting skin and rub some of the herb butter onto turkey breasts. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper onto turkey.

  6. STEP 6

    Fold cheesecloth into 17-inch (4 layer) square. Soak in wine and butter mixture, squeeze out a little of the liquid. Lay over turkey. Baste turkey and cloth with more wine mixture.

  7. STEP 7

    Roast turkey 30 minutes. Baste with wine mixture. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Baste turkey every 30 minutes. Turn turkey pan every hour. After 3 hours remove cheesecloth and baste with any remaining butter mixture. Continue roasting until thermometer inserted into thickest part of thigh reads 165°F.

  8. STEP 8

    Remove turkey from oven. Let stand 30 minutes before carving.

Read the Story Behind the Recipe

Tip #1

Thaw turkey in original plastic wrapper according to chart below. Keep thawed turkey refrigerated. Do not stuff until roasting time. Roast within 24 hours after thawing. Refreezing is not recommended.

Approximate Thawing Times

Weight:  8 - 12 pounds             
In Cold Water*:  4 - 6 hours        
In Refrigerator:  1 - 2 days
Weight:  10 - 16 pounds             
In Cold Water*:  6 - 8 hours        
In Refrigerator:  2 - 3 days 

Weight:  16 - 20 pounds             
In Cold Water*:  8 - 10 hours        
In Refrigerator:  3 - 4 days 

Weight:  20 - 24 pounds             
In Cold Water*:  10 - 12 hours        
In Refrigerator:  4 - 5 days 

*Change water frequently to keep cold.

Tip #2

Approximate Roasting Times

Weight:   8 - 12 pounds
325°F Oven Unstuffed:  2 3/4 - 3 hours   
325°F Oven Stuffed:  3 - 3 1/2 hours

Weight:   12 - 14 pounds
325°F Oven Unstuffed:  3 - 3 3/4 hours   
325°F Oven Stuffed:  3 1/2 - 4 hours​
Weight:   14 - 18 pounds
325°F Oven Unstuffed:  3 3/4 - 4 1/4 hours   
325°F Oven Stuffed:  4 - 4 1/4 hours​

Weight:   18 - 20 pounds
325°F Oven Unstuffed:  4 1/4 - 4 1/2 hours   
325°F Oven Stuffed:  4 1/4 - 4 3/4 hours​

Weight:   20 - 24 pounds
325°F Oven Unstuffed:  4 1/2 - 5 hours   
325°F Oven Stuffed:  4 3/4 - 5 1/4 hours​

Roasting time will be shorter or longer than indicated on the chart if the turkey is warmer or colder than refrigerator temperature.

Nutrition (1 serving)

660 Calories
29 Fat (g)
315 Cholesterol (mg)
670 Sodium (mg)
2 Carbohydrates (g)
0 Dietary Fiber
92 Protein (g)
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