A few weeks ago, I hosted a Friendsgiving holiday dinner for my friends. I knew I wanted to cook a turkey, but I also knew I didn’t want it to be basic. As a lover of spicy foods, I quickly decided to do a Cajun Honeysuckle White Whole Turkey! In fact, I decided to do a Cajun theme for all of the food. (Check out my Friendsgiving blog post to see how I pulled it off.) I’ll share my Dirty Turkey recipe with you soon, but for now, let’s dive into this Cajun Honeysuckle White Whole Turkey recipe.

How to pick a turkey

First of all, let’s talk about buying a Turkey. This is SUPER important because chances are it will be the main dish for your party. Sure, the recipe is a big part of it, but quality turkey is the first step! Here are some tips to get the turkey your loved ones deserve. 

Make sure it’s a quality turkey!

It’s super important for me to buy a high-quality turkey that’s free of added hormones. That’s why I opted to go with a Honeysuckle White Whole Turkey! I love how transparent they are as a company. I mean, Honeysuckle White was one of the first to let you trace your fresh whole turkey to the farm where it was raised. Probably because their birds are raised with care by independent family farmers. 

What size turkey should I get?

After you decide what brand to trust with your turkey, you have to pick a size! Things to consider:

  • How many guests are coming to your party?
  • How big is the pan you’re using to cook the Honeysuckle White Whole Turkey?
  • How long do you have to cook the turkey?

Based on those answers, you can choose a smaller turkey or a humongous turkey. If you’d like a quick guide, check out this one I found on the Honeysuckle White FAQ page.

  • 2 to 4 guests — 8 to 12 pounds
  • 5 to 7 guests — 12 to 16 pounds
  • 8 to 10 guests — 16 to 20 pounds
  • 11 to 13 guests — 20 to 24 pounds

To brine or not to brine?

Uhm….TO BRINE! Honestly, I’ve never even tried to cook a turkey without brining it. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – am I right? Soaking your turkey in salt water makes it so tender and flavorful. 

A cajun turkey calls for a cajun brine

Since I decided to do a Cajun Honeysuckle White Whole Turkey, I used Tony’s cajun seasoning and a bunch of salt in my water! Personally I like to brine mine overnight, but some people say a few hours is fine. Either way, make sure you brine it in the fridge for food safety purposes.

A sneaky way to brine a turkey in the fridge

Okay, not going to lie. I feel pretty genius for this idea. I mean I know it’s important to keep a turkey cold until you cook it, but like, how am I supposed to fit a bucket in my fridge? Well, I live in an apartment so my small fridge is NOT made for that. So what do I do? I take out one of the drawers that I’d normally keep my meat in and fill that sucker up with water! The best thing is that after I have my turkey covered, I can put it right back in it’s little drawer slot and let the bird soak overnight. 

Okay…so what about that recipe?

First of all, if you skipped down to this part without reading all of that up there, I’m sorry but your turkey may not come out as well. For those of you that stuck with me, SURPRISE! It’s time to start cookin’ good lookin’! But before I get to it, I have to tell you where I got the inspo from my Cajun Turkey! I found this recipe on Side Chef a while back and loved how juicy the turkey came out. I tweaked the ingredients, but I kept their method because, well it works! Alright, now let’s hop on in.

Cajun Turkey

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dinner, holiday, holidays, thanksgiving, turkey, whole bird

Ingredients

  • Ingredients
    1
    Honeysuckle White Whole Turkey
  • Tony’s Cajun SeasoningTony’s Cajun Seasoning
  • 1 orange
  • 1 bulb of garlic
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1 bundle of rosemary
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup olive oil you may need more
  • 2-3 tbsp ghee
  • 2 cups organic chicken broth

Instructions

  • Brine the turkey for 6-8 hours in water, 4 tbsp of Cajun seasoning, and 4 tbsp of salt. Make sure that the brine fully covers the turkey. Brine the turkey for 6-8 hours in water, 4 tbsp of Cajun seasoning, and 4 tbsp of salt. Make sure that the brine fully covers the turkey.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Take the innards out of the turkey.Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Take the innards out of the turkey.
  • Take out the turkey and pat it dry with paper towels. Place half of the orange and lemon onto a roasting pan. Place the turkey breast-side up in the roasting pan.Take out the turkey and pat it dry with paper towels. Place half of the orange and lemon onto a roasting pan. Place the turkey breast-side up in the roasting pan.
  • Pour olive oil over the turkey and rub it in. Rub the ghee into the turkey. Make sure to rub the insides too. Sprinkle (heavily) the cajun seasoning over the turkey and rub it in.Pour olive oil over the turkey and rub it in. Rub the ghee into the turkey. Make sure to rub the insides too. Sprinkle (heavily) the cajun seasoning over the turkey and rub it in.
  • Place the garlic, onion, half of the rosemary, half of the orange and half of the lemon into the turkey. Place the garlic, onion, half of the thyme, half of the orange and half of the lemon into the turkey.
  • Make sure the legs are still looped together. Tuck the wings under the bird.Make sure the legs are still looped together. Tuck the wings under the bird.
  • Cover the turkey with foil and roast it for 20 minutes. Try to let as little steam as possible escape the pan.Cover the turkey with foil and roast it for 20 minutes. Try to let as little steam as possible escape the pan.
  • Pour the broth into the pan. Add the other half of the thyme to the pan. Roast the bird for 40 minutes.Pour the broth into the pan. Add the other half of the thyme to the pan. Roast the bird for 40 minutes.
  • Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Take off the foil cook for 2 more hours, basting occasionally with pan juices about every 30 minutes.Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Take off the foil cook for 2 more hours, basting occasionally with pan juices about every 30 minutes.
  • After the bird is done, put it on a platter and cover it with foil for about 20-30 minutes.After the bird is done, put it on a platter and cover it with foil for about 20-30 minutes.
  • Bonus tip: If your turkey starts to look dry when it’s being served, pour some olive oil on it to give it a little life. I had to do this when I hosted my Friendsgiving and it livened it right up!Bonus tip: If your turkey starts to look dry when it’s being served, pour some olive oil on it to give it a little life. I had to do this when I hosted my Friendsgiving and it livened it right up!

I hope you love this turkey recipe as much as my friends did! I’d love to hear if you try it out and what you thought! Let me know in the comments below. Looking for a good side dish? Check out my Cajun Turkey Dirty Rice recipe! If you need more tips on how to host a stress-free Friendsgiving, check out my blog post here.

Ginger Marie

I'm a thirty-something lifestyle blogger who tries not to take life too seriously. I think laughing and running are the cure to everything especially when its done in a new city. I think a balanced diet is important, and that they're much easier when they include chocolate. :)

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