Real Recipes From Real Home Cooks ®

roasted turkey with scrumptious chestnut stuffing

(2 ratings)
Blue Ribbon Recipe by
Kami Roberts
Mohnton, PA

I love chestnut stuffing for the added sweetness chestnuts bring. What I've always hated about stuffing the bird, though, was that it seemed that by the time the stuffing was cooked and safe to eat, the meat would be a bit dry. I could dirty another baking dish and cook the stuffing outside the bird, but I could do without the crust that formed. I came up with a few solutions this year and the result was amazing!

Blue Ribbon Recipe

This delicious roasted turkey will be the spotlight of your Thanksgiving or Christmas table. Brining assures you'll have a juicy turkey. Slathering herbed butter under the skin also helps to keep the turkey meat moist. Lightly brushing vermouth over the skin gives slightly caramelizes it and adds a beautiful golden color. The dressing ingredients include a balance of savory herbs, sweet chestnuts, and earthy mushrooms. The aroma while the chestnut stuffing simmers is amazing.

— The Test Kitchen @kitchencrew
(2 ratings)
yield 10 serving(s)
prep time 23 Hr
cook time 6 Hr
method Bake

Ingredients For roasted turkey with scrumptious chestnut stuffing

  • 14-17 lb
    whole turkey, thawed
  • 1 c
    Kosher salt
  • 1/2 c
    brown sugar
  • 1 lg
    orange, zested and juiced
  • 1 Tbsp
  • 1 Tbsp
    whole black peppercorns
  • 1 Tbsp
    whole cloves
  • 3 lb
  • 1 gal
  • 1 c
    unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 Tbsp
    fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • white vermouth
  • salt and pepper
  • 12 slice
    white bread
  • 1 1/2 lb
    whole chestnuts
  • 6 oz
    whole cremini mushrooms (also known as Baby Bella mushrooms)
  • 1/2 c
    chopped onion
  • 3 - 4 stalk
    celery; chopped
  • 1/4 c
    parsley, chopped
  • 3-4 Tbsp
    vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp
    garlic powder
  • 2 tsp
    poultry seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp
    ground black pepper
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 c
    chicken stock

How To Make roasted turkey with scrumptious chestnut stuffing

Test Kitchen Tips
Vermouth will darken the skin. So, be cautious with how much you brush on the skin.
  • Boiling brine ingredients, except water and ice.
    FOR TURKEY BRINE: Combine all brine ingredients except for turkey and ice in a large stockpot or work in even batches in a smaller pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then bring down to a simmer for about ten minutes. Remove from heat and let cool completely.
  • Brine in a resealable container with turkey and ice.
    Pour brine into a container wide enough so that the turkey can lay the breast side down. Remove giblets from turkey and reserve for gravy or another use. Lower turkey into the brine. Add ice. Cover and let stand overnight.
  • Chopping roasted chestnuts.
    Meanwhile, prep the stuffing for the following day by first roasting chestnuts. Preheat oven to 425 F. Cut a shallow cross into the flat side of each chestnut, careful not to pierce the shell through to the flesh. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for about 15 minutes. Chestnuts are easier to peel when they are still hot, so let them cool just enough to handle them before peeling with your hands. Make sure to get all the shells and peels off completely. Coarsely chop the flesh.
  • Chestnuts, celery, and onions in a bowl.
    Mix the chestnuts, chopped onion, and celery. Cover and chill until ready to use.
  • Toasted bread on a baking sheet.
    Spread the bread slices, six at a time, on a baking sheet. Preheat the broiler and broil the bread in two batches, about 2-3 minutes on each side until the bread is an even tan on both sides.
  • Cooled bread cut into cubes.
    Let the bread cool completely before cubing each slice into 1/2 in cubes.
  • Cubed bread in a bowl to dry out.
    Pour bread and any loose crumbs into a large bowl and let sit overnight to completely dry out.
  • Cleaning and slicing cremini mushrooms.
    Rub a brush or paper towel over cremini mushrooms to remove any dirt and moisture. Make sure they are completely dry. Slice mushrooms to a medium thickness.
  • Sliced mushrooms on a paper plate covered with a second paper plate.
    Spread on a paper plate. Cover with a second paper plate and place into the coldest part of your refrigerator; away from any humidity or moisture.
  • Stirring mushrooms into the veggies.
    When the turkey is ready to be removed from the brine, first remove the chestnut/veggie mixture from the fridge. Combine the mixture with mushrooms.
  • Cooking the vegetables in a skillet.
    Heat oil in a very large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Carefully stir in the mixture. Stir and simmer until vegetables are just soft.
  • Stirring in bread crumbs, parsley, and chicken broth.
    Stir in toasted bread and crumbs, seasonings, and parsley. Heat for about a minute more. Then stir in broth. Continue to heat and stir until mixture is combined, hot, and moist, about three minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and keep very warm.
  • Thyme and unsalted butter in a bowl.
    For turkey oven prep, mix thyme and unsalted butter.
  • Loosening the skin on the turkey.
    Loosen turkey skin in breasts and drumsticks.
  • Spreading butter under the skin.
    Spread the butter mixture under the skin, pressing so that the turkey is as evenly covered as possible.
  • Flipping the turkey.
    Turn turkey, breast side down, and lay neck skin flat so the neck cavity is exposed.
  • Stuffing the turkey.
    Using gloves, stuff turkey neck cavity ONLY with very warm stuffing, filling in as much as possible.
  • Skin folded over turkey and wings tucked under.
    Pull neck skin up to wings to hold stuffing in place. Fold wings over neck skin and tie with kitchen string to hold them in place - using metal skewers or poultry pins if necessary.
  • Turkey flipped and legs tied together.
    Turn the turkey, breast side up, and tie the legs together with kitchen string.
  • Brushing vermouth on the skin.
    Brush vermouth over the entire surface of the turkey skin. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Roasting the turkey.
    Preheat oven to 350 F and roast turkey in a large roasting pan on a roasting rack for 4-6 hours or until thermometer reading from a thigh reaches 160 degrees.
  • Basting the turkey.
    Baste turkey when fat renders, but only about once an hour.
  • Turkey covered in aluminum foil.
    Loosely cover the turkey with aluminum foil halfway through baking if the skin begins to darken too much.
  • Roasted turkey resting.
    Let the turkey rest for about 40 minutes before carving. Remove wings and carve the neck side first, and get a little bit of stuffing inside each slice. Serve with giblet gravy.