Roast the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey with Chef Tim Love

Whether you’re roasting the turkey for the first time or looking to put a new twist on an old favorite, watch as Chef Tim Love shows you the step-by-step basics for preparing the ultimate Thanksgiving turkey. Trust us, it’s simple and delicious!

Chef Tim Love
Thanksgiving Turkey


  • 1 fresh 12 lb. turkey
  • ¼ lb. butter
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tbsp. fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp. chili powder
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 large bunch of thyme
  • 1 whole lemon, cut in half
  • 3 whole leeks, split
  • 4 garlic cloves, split


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. Melt the butter in a small sauce pan and add the juice of lemon, zest, paprika and chili powder. Set aside.
  3. Remove the giblets out of the turkey and wash with cold water inside and out of the turkey. Remove any excess skin and pin feathers. Pat the outside dry.
  4. Place turkey in a roasting pan and liberally season the inside of the turkey cavity with salt and pepper. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, halved lemon, leeks and garlic.
  5. Brush the outside of the turkey with the butter mixture. Liberally season with salt and pepper.
  6. Tie the legs together with butcher twine and tuck wings under the body of the turkey.
  7. Roast the turkey for about 2 3/4 hours or until juices run clear where the leg meets the breast.
  8. Remove and let rest for 20 minutes covered with foil.
  9. Serve & enjoy!

And for when you want to spice up those turkey leftovers…

Chef Tim Love
Spicy Turkey Posole
Image courtesy FOOD & WINE

Servings: 4 to 6


  • Carcass from one 13-lb. turkey, plus 6 cups shredded turkey (about 2 lb.)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, quartered
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Two 15-oz. cans white hominy, drained
  • 3 tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
  • 1 large jalapeño, thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1/4 c. coarsely chopped cilantro leaves
  • Salt
  • Avocado chunks, shredded Monterey Jack cheese and warm corn tortillas for serving


In a large stockpot, cover the turkey carcass, onion, carrot, celery and bay leaf with 16 cups of water and bring to a boil over moderately high heat. Simmer the turkey stock over moderate heat until the broth is flavorful, about 2 hours. Strain the broth through a coarse sieve into a large heatproof bowl.

Return the broth to the stockpot. Add the hominy, tomatoes, garlic and jalapeño and cook over moderately high heat until the broth is reduced to 6 cups, about 30 minutes. Add the shredded turkey and chopped cilantro and simmer until the stew is heated through. Season the posole with salt, ladle into deep bowls and serve with the avocado chunks, shredded Monterey Jack cheese and warm tortillas.

Happy Thanksgiving!