Beer for Dinner: Drunk AF Turkey

You guys, Thanksgiving is right around the corner and living through your family and in-laws can be a real challenge. I know you're gonna drink...a lot...but, why not let your turkey have a pass too? Check out this amazingly delicious recipe for Drunk AF Turkey! A little craft beer makes everything better....



The Craft Beer Brine

  • 1/2 gallon water
  • 2 cup salt, coarse kosher
  • 1/2 cup sugar, dark brown
  • 1/2 cup locally sourced honey
  • 2 teaspoon cloves
  • 2 bunch thyme
  • 1 bunch rosemary
  • 7 bay leaves
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, sliced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 3 tangerines or oranges, cut into quarters
  • 1 leek, peeled and sliced
  •  ½ gallon cold water
  • 2 six packs your favorite craft ale. I really love Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale


  • 1 18-22 lb Turkey 
  • 10 slices of thick-cut bacon 
  • 2 oranges
  • butter, unsalted, room temperature
  • salt and pepper to taste 


Just Mix and Brine Option

Brine Directions

  1. You will need a container that holds 3-4 gallons of liquid. A bucket or cooler will work. 
  2. Rinse your turkey and remove gizzards. 
  3. Place turkey in container and fill with your prepared brine. 
  4. Place turkey in refrigerator or other cold place for 48 hours. 
  5. Rotate the turkey every few hours to ensure that the brine saturates the entire bird. 

It's time to cook your turkey...

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Remove your turkey from the brine and pat with dry paper towels. Continue patting bird with dry paper towels until the turkey is completely dry. 
  3. Place bacon underneath the skin of the turkey, starting a the neck and working your way down. 
  4. Season inside of the cavity with salt and pepper and stuff with oranges, rosemary and thyme. 
  5. Truss the turkey's legs with twine. 
  6. Rub down all of the skin with butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 
  7. Place your turkey in a large roasting pan. 
  8. Let the turkey sit out on the counter for 2 hours, in order to bring it to room temperature. 
  9. Cook your turkey according to it's size by pound. Generally speaking, a 16-20 pound turkey should take 3.5 - 4 hours to cook. The internal temperature of your bird should be 160 degrees F. 
  10. Once the turkey has cooked, let it sit outside of oven for about 45 minutes. This will lock in the juices and bring the internal cooking down slowly. 
  11. Carve and enjoy! 

Catherine Contreras

Catherine Contreras is a proud San Antonio, Texas native with a passion for craft beer and inappropriate banter. She brings one new and hilarious podcast episode to over 3,000 listeners every week. Each episode highlights Texas craft beer and is filled with inappropriate and side splitting comedy. She is also a proud member of the BarbacoApparel family. A San Antonio based apparel company that caters to Texans and Texans at heart.