This Maple Bourbon Glazed Turkey is so simple yet so beautiful! It’s perfect for all home chefs, from Thanksgiving novices to seasoned pros.
If you’re the cook for Thanksgiving dinner, what is your favorite part of the preparation – the turkey, or the sides? It’s such a tough call for me. I love the sides because you can get really creative and have a lot of variety, but I really dig putting together a beautiful turkey platter.
That being said, I DON’T love just about anything else involved with getting the turkey to the table. The steps involved with thawing a frozen bird, cleaning it, rinsing it, brining or seasoning it? Ugh. It all just annoys me, because all I want to do is pull a perfectly cooked turkey from the oven, let it rest a bit, and then cut it up and plate it with lots of pretty garnishes. So how do I get from Point A to Point Z without all of the other turkey annoyances in the middle?
The answer here is as easy as making this Maple Bourbon Glazed Turkey with a JENNIE-O® OVEN READY™ Whole Turkey. I have been using these for years, and they never fail to surprise me (in a good way) with how excellent they really are. The turkey comes preseasoned, in it’s own cooking bag. You literally take it out of the freezer (no thawing!), remove the outer bag, cut a few slits in the cooking bag, place it in a roasting pan, and roast until your meat thermometer (or the included pop-up thermometer) tells you the turkey is done.
That’s seriously it! While these turkeys are perfect for nervous Thanksgiving novices, the great results make them a go-to for seasoned (pun intended) Thanksgiving pros, too.
Each OVEN READY™ Whole Turkey comes with a gravy packet (simply heat and serve), but I’m usually more of a glaze person when it comes to turkey. Actually, the answer is always both: glaze AND gravy.
Tips to make your Maple Bourbon Glazed Turkey a success:
- This Maple Bourbon Glaze couldn’t be easier: simply combine some butter, apple juice, bourbon, maple syrup and black pepper in a pot and cook it about a half hour until it reaches a glaze consistency. You can do this while your turkey is cooking! I like to brush the cooked turkey with glaze, then cut the turkey up and place the pieces on a platter, and then brush with more glaze. The glaze will prevent the sliced pieces of turkey from drying out as they sit on the table.
- My food stylist tendencies never let up, even on a holiday where I’m just hosting family. I love a beautiful turkey platter, but to be honest, I never have too detailed of a plan for it. When I’m at the store shopping for my Thanksgiving ingredients, I simply grab whatever looks prettiest. When in doubt, you can’t go wrong with lots of fresh herbs and fruit (especially citrus). Grapes are great platter fillers, and watercress will give you a nice pop of green to go with all of that brown. You really can’t make a mistake here. Look around at the store, and whatever looks beautiful – take it home and use it to garnish your Maple Bourbon Glazed Turkey masterpiece!
- 1 JENNIE-O OVEN READY Whole Turkey
- 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup apple juice
- 1/4 cup bourbon
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Prepare turkey according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, add butter, juice, bourbon, maple syrup and pepper to medium saucepot. Heat to boiling over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium. Cook 24 to 28 minutes or until mixture is reduced by half, watching carefully to make sure mixture doesn’t boil over. Mixture should have a thin glaze consistency, and will continue to thicken as it cools. Remove from heat; set aside at room temperature.
- Brush cooked turkey with glaze.
Recipes to use up any leftover turkey:
- Turkey, Mushroom & Cranberry Risotto – a new twist on Thanksgiving flavors
- Thanksgiving Leftover Dumplings – re-purpose leftovers into a fun party bite!
- Turkey & Gnocchi Arrabiata Soup – one of my favorites
- Very Teriyaki Turkey Pizza – a fun pizza my husband invented!
- Thanksgiving Leftover Waffles – when in doubt, waffle it up!
- Thanksgiving Leftovers Croque Madame from Half Baked Harvest
- Turkey & Cranberry Quesadillas from Little Dairy on the Prarie
Disclosure: As a member of the Jennie-O Switch Circle, this was a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Jennie-O. Sponsored posts help me pay for the costs associated with this blog (groceries…lots of groceries), and help support me as I pursue a career in recipe development and food photography. All opinions are 100% my own.