Monday, November 8, 2010

Brown Bag Roasted Turkey & A Butterball Turkey

Today I want to share a recipe for one of my favorite methods to roast a turkey. Last year I came across this recipe for a Brown Bag Roasted TurkeyI couldn't imagine cooking a turkey in a brown paper bag. My first thought was how does the bag not catch on fire since it is paper? Well I read a bit farther and found out that paper burns at about 451 degrees. This turkey is cooked at 375 degrees.

So out of curiosity I tried the this recipe. I did run into a problem right off the top. I couldn't find a bag large enough for my turkey. Even the paper grocery sacks were too small. I happen to have had two Braums paper bags so I used those. One bag for each side so I could get them around the roaster pan.

I followed the directions exactly and when the turkey was done and I tore open the bag and I couldn't believe it!!!! The turkey was a gorgeous golden brown. When we carved into the turkey it was so moist. All I kept saying was that is one beautiful bird. This really is the easiest and yummiest way to roast a turkey. Don't take my word for it. Please try this recipe for yourself!!! 

Today I also have a Butterball Turkey Giveaway!!! The generous folks over at Butterball are giving (2) Mommy's Kitchen readers a $15 Butterball Gift Check, so you have one  less thing you to worry about this Thanksgiving. 

I don't know about you but cooking a turkey can be pretty intimidating, especially if it's your first time. I get as nervous as anyone else to make the perfect bird. Well don't worry help is on the way. Did you know that Butterball has a Turkey Talk Line? 

They have Butterball Turkey Experts waiting to help you through the whole turkey cooking process. No question is too tough for these turkey talkers, and they are ready for any challenge you throw their way. You can reach the Turkey Talk Line at the number below.

Lines are open November and December.
Weekdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. CST
Contact Butterball by Email.

I have included some step by step photos of just how easy it is to prepare this yummy Brown Bag Roasted Turkey. I have also added a Printable Friendly Version of this recipe at the end of this post.

Start by removing everything out of the turkey. (giblet bag and livers) Add UN peeled vegetables(onions, carrots, celery and apple if using) to the inside of the turkey
(the veggies are just for flavor). They will be thrown away later. Don't forget the mashed garlic.

Rub the turkey all over with olive oil. Make sure the whole bird is covered in oil. Put the turkey in a roasting pan and cover it with a large brown paper bag. Staple shut. If you have a huge turkey use two paper bags at each end. It wont stick to the bird because of the olive oil. Sprinkle water all over the bag.

Place the turkey on the middle rack of a pre-heated 375 F oven. Make sure that the bag does not make contact with the heating element of the oven. Remember the bag wont burn because paper burns at 451 and we're at 375 degrees. 

The advantage of the brown paper bag over a Reynolds cooking bag is that the paper breathes so the turkey ROASTS. Roast for 13-15 minutes per pound. When the turkey is ready, poke a meat thermometer through the bag and into the Turkey and give it a minute to register.

 Make sure it doesn't touch the bone. The thermometer should register between 163-170 degrees. Remove from oven, cut away the bag and remove the Roasting pan.

This is the finished product. The turkey is golden brown and the meat is so tender. I hope you will give this recipe a try because it really is so easy to make.

Brown Bag Roasted Turkey

1 - 18 -20 lb whole turkey
2 stalks celery, roughly cut 
1 - small apple 
1 carrot, roughly cut
1 onion, cut into 

3 -4 
garlic cloves, crushed

olive oil
1 - large brown paper grocery bag

Removing everything out of the turkey. (giblet bag and livers) 

Add UN peeled vegetables (onions, carrots, celery and apple if using) to the inside of the turkey. (the veggies are just for flavor).

They will be thrown away later. Don't forget the mashed garlic.

Rub the turkey all over with olive oil. Make sure the whole bird is covered in oil. Put the turkey in a roasting pan and cover it with a large brown paper bag.

Staple shut. If you have a huge turkey use two paper bags at each end. It wont stick to the bird because of the olive oil. Sprinkle water all over the bag.

Place the turkey on the middle rack of a pre-heated 375 F oven. Make sure that the bag does not make contact with the heating element of the oven. 

Remember the bag wont burn because paper burns at 451 and we're at 375 degrees. The advantage of the brown paper bag over a Reynolds cooking bag is that the paper breathes so the turkey ROASTS.

Roast for 13-15minutes per pound. When the turkey is ready, poke a meat thermometer through the bag and into the Turkey and give it a minute to register.

Make sure it doesn't touch the bone. The thermometer should register between 163-170 degrees. Remove from oven, cut away the bag and remove the Roasting pan.

The turkey is golden brown and the meat is so tender.

Cook's Note:
Some people say it is unsafe to cook a turkey in this manner. Use your own judgement when making this recipe. With that being said..... If you think it is unsafe because of fire, it is important that the bag doesn't make contact with the heating element of the oven. 

If you mean it is unsafe because of the recycled paper bag releasing toxins into the turkey, all we can say is that this recipe has been around for over 30 years.  Kidd Kraddick has been posting this recipe for over 10 years and has never had a single complaint that anyone has ever got sick or cancer.

What Kidd Kraddick has had is hundreds of emails telling him this is the best turkey they've ever tasted and the perfect recipe for first time chefs!

Recipe from: Kidd Kraddick


Hooiser at Heart said... #

Hey Tina! I'm so glad you posted this recipe. My mother always used to cook our turkeys in a brown grocery bag, then one day on the news, about a hundred years ago, someone said not to do it because the bags contain formaldehyde in them. I don't think that's true. I'm doing mine in a bag this year.

Unknown said... #

I've never heard of doing turkey in a brown bag but it makes total sense! But I'm not a huge thanksgiving fan just have bad memories of one when I was little and haven't been able to shake them so my husband and I normally just go out to Cracker Barrel together

Toby said... #

Thanks for the recipe-- interesting. My memory is when I was in South Carolina I attended a southern Thanksgiving- where the guys all eat first and the girls wait on their man-- then the girls eat what is left over... then the guys go out hunting.. and this was just a few years ago. There was no sense of family because you weren't even sitting together with your husband. Kind of wierd.

Gailanne said... #

Most embarrasing was my first Thanksgiving dinner for my now husband about 15 yrs ago. I cooked my turkey slowly all night, got up early, took it out (it looked and smelled beautiful) and put it on top of the stove, while I ran to take a quick shower. A few minutes later I walked in the kitchen and found my beautiful bird in the middle of the kitchen floor being eaten and enjoyed by my daughter's boxer.

Mandy Bird said... #

I usually just use a Reynold's roasting bag and put the turkey on a cookie sheet, but this looks great! I love making a mini Thanksgiving dinner for my little family so we have leftovers for ourselves. That's the best part!

Unknown said... #

My husband and I cooked our first turkey last year. We tried so hard to get all the stuff out of it - but we still missed one bag of gizzards. Figures. The turkey was still good, regardless.

Jodie said... #

It was Thanksgiving Day 2001, my first year in Texas. My husband and I were working that day. We drove for a courier company delivery medical supplies, xrays, etc. We could not afford to be off for the holidays as back then we had problems making ends meet. Eating a sack lunch was all we could muster up, we received our first delivery instructions. We were picking up from an insurance company. We thought it was odd they were open on Thanksgiving. Turns out, we picked up 10 turkeys and cakes to deliver. Just to see the joy and surprise on the faces of all those recipients made us realize how fortunate we were. It was one of the best Thanksgivings I can remember!

Anonymous said... #

I would very much love to win a turkey! And to try this recipe! I am a cook "in training" and typically burn everything. It doesn't help that Im a vegetarian and that makes it harder to cook things like this for my family! My 3yo daughter Sydney Rose LOVES turkey and my mom always does thanksgiving so I am determined this year to pull this off! You said to put a recipe here to enter so one of the few things I can cook is green bean bundles :) 2 cans whole green giant green beans, 1 lb of your favorite bacon, 1/4c brown sugar, 1/4c red wine vinegret (or 1/4c of dijon mustard). cut the bacon slices in half and wrap each piece around 4-5 beans and place on baking pan. you can use toothpicks if you like to hold together. drizzle the brown sugar/vinegret or brown sugar/mustard sauce over the beans and bake for about 25-30 min or until the bacon looks done. This is my "go-to" for the annual Firefighter Xmas potluck and is requested every time. My family would greatly appeciate not having to eat momma's "tofurky" this year, lol! PLEASE HELP :)

Kim said... #

Wow that turkey looks great. Still unsure about cooking it in a bag. Not to many blunders..but last year I defrosted the turkey in our fridge. But for some reason, it still had a piece a little frozen shut and I just assumed that something was up with this turkey. Sure enough..aftere he cooked..all his junk was still in the bag..we laughed and moved on. There wasn't any turkey must have been decent. Love your blog and following you via GFC


Tina Butler said... #

I was a bit worried myself about the bag and toxins but the recipe stated no one has gotten sick from it. I kind of chalk this recipe up to my sun tea post. People have been doing it for a long time and haven't gotten sick. It's really your personal preference. You would be surprised at how many people make this recipe. The advantage over a cooking bag is it roasts and gets really brown. You can click on the link at the end of the post for ?'s that have come up about this this method.

Lisa said... #

This recipe sounds so delicious! I wonder if the paper bags you can buy for leaves would work- I would try them out but I'm a bit worried they would contain hazardous chemicals.

Lynell said... #

I just may try that, thanks!
Here is my
Cranberry Relish recipe.
Makes about eight servings
1 bag of fresh cranberries
2 apples
2 oranges
1 cup of pecans, chopped
about a cup of sugar

Chop cranberries in chopper until "well" crushed. Peel apple and orange and chop into small pieces (Do Not crush) add nuts and enough sugar to make sweet.
This will be a sweet and tart Relish.

amy p said... #

turkey in a bag sounds yummy, i'll have to try it. my favorite would be pumpkin cheesecake, mmm so yummy. but i made your faverorite sweet potato recipe last year both for the family & for church. It is now a must to make. Everyone just loved it. So, thank you!

Sila Lumenn said... #

Hey Tina! We always do our turkey in an 18 qt. roaster oven, but I bet the brown bag idea would still work. I may give it a try this year.

We usually have a quiet, family Thanksgiving, but several years ago we invited my husband's boss and his children who, because of a tragic death and a messy divorce, suddenly found themselves with no place to go for the holiday. It turned out to be one of the best Thanksgivings we ever had and every one of us had something extra special to be thankful for. And, isn't that what Thanksgiving is all about?

Tina Butler said... #

Lynell the cranberry relish looks really good. I may make yours this year.

Anonymous said... #

I have never seen a turkey cooked that way before!
Here is a recipe that was shared with me last year and became a family favorite:

Pumpkin Crunch

Heat oven to 350*.
1 30oz Easy Pumpkin Mix, (not pure pumpkin)
2/3 cup evaporated milk
3 whole eggs beaten
Combine and pour into a 9x13 pan. Prepare topping.
1 box of dry cake mix. Sprinkle on top of mixture.
1 cup of pecans
1 stick of melted butter, drizzle on top.
Bake at 350 for 45 minutes until firm and toasty on top.

Rhondi said... #

I just love Thanksgiving-sharing food, stories, and laughter all day long with family and friends! My hubby and father in law always fry a big ol turkey out on our back driveway every year. They wash it up really good, inject it full of flavorful marinade, then dunk it in the peanut oil filled fryer. Then they stand there and stare at the fryer the entire cooking time like the birds going to fly away or something. I always get a picture of this every year so I can look back and laugh.

Jamie said... #

A thanksgiving favorite for me is a cherry jello salad that we only have at holidays. It consists of cherry jello, coolwhip, pecans, pineapple and shredded cheese. So yummy!

AmandaE said... #

My favorite Thanksgiving tradition is everyone gathering around my Grandmother's huge dining room table (it seriously seats about 24 people) and enjoying a delicious meal together!

Nellie said... #

For many years, I have been the one to host Thanksgiving for the family. One that stays in my mind the most is when our oldest daughter (now 37) was seven months old, and her cousin was not quite three months old. We have a picture of her giving him a real stare! The day was special because my 87-yo grandmother and my 67-yo mother were present, giving us four generations in the picture. Strangely enough I had been able to pull together the traditional meal, even with that first baby in the house! Oh, I've even done the brown bag turkey before, and it turned out very well.

Ingrien said... #

My best memory is when my mom was still alive, she always cooked Thanksgiving lunch for us. I carry that tradition on for my son and family.

Tina Butler said... #

I love reading all these stories Ü

Tara K. said... #

I have never made the Thanksgiving turkey. My mom always does. However we moved last spring, and will be having my own family dinner this year. I want to try this!
Here is one of our favorite appetizers:
Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball
(make at least 3 hours in advance)
1/2 cup butter (no substitutes), softened, 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar, 2 tbsp brown sugar, 3/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips, 3/4 cup finely chopped pecans, graham crackers *In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until fluffy. Gradually add sugars; beat just until combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Place cream cheese mixture on a large piece of plastic wrap, shape into a ball. Refrigerate at least 1 hour. Just before serving, roll cheese ball in pecans. Serve with graham crackers. Enjoy!

Ted said... #

Praline Pumpkin Pie ala Dutch Oven

2 Cups of flour
1 Teaspoon of Salt
2/3 Cup of Shortening
4-6 Tablespoons of Cold Water

Mix flour and salt together cut in shortening with pastry cutter until it is crumbly. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until you have the right consistency. Spray a 10" Dutch oven with Pam or oil. Roll your crust out on a floured surface then put it in your Dutch oven. Shape it up the sides about 1" or so. (set aside)


1 15 oz can of pumpkin
¾ Cup of Brown Sugar
½ Teaspoon of Salt
1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
½ Teaspoon of Ground Ginger
¼ Teaspoon Ground Cloves
¼ Teaspoon of All spice

Place all of these items in a 10" oven (or whatever size you have) on about 10 pieces of charcoal cook for about 4 minutes until it thickens a little. Take off the heat.

3 Eggs
2 Teaspoons of Vanilla
¾ Cup of Evaporated Milk

Wisk in the eggs, vanilla, and milk, pour into the prepared piecrust and cook for about 1 hour at 350 degrees.


1 Cup of chopped pecans
2 Tablespoons of Corn Syrup
1 Cup of Brown Sugar
1 Teaspoon of Vanilla

Mix these all together in a bowl. After the pie has cooked for an hour spread this mixture over the top evenly and let it cook for about 10-15 minutes more. Take coals off and let your pumpkin pie cool down.

Add some cream to the top and you are set!

tgcrom at gmail dot com

Ava said... #

My favorite thanksgiving memory was once it was at my aunt's and after we ate, we watched a movie and then got in the hot tub. I had never went hot tubbin on T-Day before ;o)

Shonna said... #

A couple of years ago we had all of the family together. That evening as we were cleaning up someone had taken out some Snausages for the dogs. They left them on the table and as my SIL and I were drying the dishes. We saw grandma come in and take one out and eat it... she spit it out but she thought it was Combos instead. I'm not sure she'll ever live that down.

Susan B said... #

Hi Tina,
Would love to win a turkey certificate. Here's a recipe I received from a friend that sounds good and that is a little different for Cranberry sauce.
1 bag of fresh cranberries
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of pineapple juice
Bring all ingredients to boil in sauce pan, simmer about 12 minutes til cranberries pop. Allow to cool, refrigerate.

Anonymous said... #

So far, the biggest Thanksgiving blunder I have been part of wasn't my fault. Right after my brother-in-law got married, he asked if I could make a turkey when we were there visiting. He forgot to tell me it was frozen ...

Brandy Caldwell said... #

About 9 years ago, I made my first ever Thanksgiving meal for my fiance at the time (who is now my husband of 8 years!), and my best friend. I was so excited!! I made my list,did my shopping, and cooked all night the evening before. I got up EARLY that morning to get my bird in the oven and I was so excited when it was done and was just perfect...well except for the fact that it was pink on the inside when we cut it was done, but just pink....I didn't realize I needed to remove the aluminum foil!! Ooops!!

Lorrie, AR said... #

The paperbag method does produce a really great turkey, but where I live I don't think I have seen a traditional "paperbag" for over five years. Favorite Thanksgiving food has to be my moms special greenbean casserole - cheese, mushroos, bacon, onion, garlic - and that's just the ingredients I know! LOL! Happy Thanksgiving to all.

tracylynne said... #

Turkey in a bag-looks too easy. My fav memory is the first time I met my husband I was pulling a turkey out of my brother's oven (I had been cooking all day) I almost dropped the turkey on the floor when my soon to be hubby Yelled "Wow"!!! I said "the turkey" he said "no you have the greatest legs!>

Colleen C. said... #

I remember my 1st Thanksgiving by myself after I moved away from home. I was cooking for my now husband and few friends, I got the turkey cooked and looking great. I went to make the gravy and FORGOT to seperate it, so it came out not so great. My loving husband ran to 4 stores and finally found some canned stuff and saved the day! But now for some reason at his families get togethers I always get stuck making the gravy. How weird! :)

Rusthawk said... #

My very first turkey dinner was served with the bagged giblets still tucked inside! (I was a kid, what did I know!) :)

Jeanette said... #

This sounds wonderful! I've only cooked cornish hen for Thanksgiving; I may have to conquer my fear of "The Big Bird" and try this recipe. My earliest memories of Thanksgiving is watching my Grandmother make magic in her kitchen. She always came up with the most wonderful dishes.

Erin said... #

I think my story is the same as a million others. My first Thanksgiving dinner I was so excited to cook for my new husband. The turkey was smelling so good and we all sat down (with the in-laws) to eat and the bag of giblets was still inside the turkey. I think the directions needed to be clearer =o)

Anonymous said... #

I'm really just a baker and steer clear of "cooking" on the holidays. I'm always the first to volunteer to bring dessert but would love to try out cooking my own turkey.

Kirby said... #

My best memories are when I was a little girl and everyone gathering around the table, the guys watching football, watching the Thanksgiving parade and all the girls in the kitchen cooking. Thats the reason why I think I love cooking so much, they started me out young! It was something I looked forward to every year and I still do to this day!

Julie said... #

My most memorable Thanksgiving was when my husband, dad, father-in-law, and brother-in-law all got deer tags and were chosen for the hunt over Thanksgiving week. Instead of being hunting widows and eating alone, we women all decided to take Thanksgiving dinner out to the hunting camp about an hour away. We sat in the hunting tent with lanterns as light and had the best dinner ever.

Susan said... #

My most memorable Thanksgiving moment was when my Dad stabbed himself in the leg with the carving knife. He insisted on eating his turkey dinner before I took him to the ER for stitches!

Danyelle said... #

I have never heard of cooking turkey in a bag, but it looks so easy. I'm really wanting to finally cook a turkey this year. I remember a few years ago my uncle's mashed potatoes came out with the consistency of wall paper paste for reasons we never figured out. That same year the drain in the kitchen sink backed up and had to be taken apart before any dishes could be taken care of.

Lisa Borowski said... #

When I was first married I made mashed potatoes that turn out to be like wall paper paste. My husband still ate them! Twenty Thanksgiving's later, the potatoes are perfect =0)

Tina @ MOMS CRAZY COOKING said... #

I was baking one of my very first turkey's filled with apples and butter and the entire turkey caught on FIRE in my oven. Yes, REALLY!!! My husband (who is a FIREMAN) wasn't home and the neighbor who was a cop nextstore heard my fire alarm and came running down! TRUE STORY and ohhhh I hope that never happens again! I would love to win! Thanks! (

Julia (Grammy) said... #

I have never been one to have favorite dishes for Thanksgiving. We always go through new recipes every year to come up with the menu. Two years ago we decided to let everyone bring their favorite h'ordervs. My family said it was the best Thanksgiving ever and we finally have a tradition!

justfiveboys said... #

Hello - love your site and love the chance of a gift certificate. My blooper story - my stepdad passed away 7 years ago on Nov. 7th, and until then, my Mom always held Thanksgiving at her home and did all the cooking. My sister and I decided we'd make the dinner and bring the family to Mom, since it was a difficult day for her. My younger sister, Kristy, was in charge of the turkey. We had everything done, the kids were running around playing, but the tension was high in the kitchen for us, since it was our first time preparing Thanksgiving dinner. Next thing you know, Kristy says she thinks the turkey is finally done, opens the oven, with great excitement, and without thinking, grabbed the pan with her BARE HANDS and instantly dropped it. The turkey fell to the floor, my sister skidding to the floor on the grease after it, then we all just cried and laughed at the same time! We still ate the turkey -

Anonymous said... #

Cooking a turkey in a brown paper bag sounds very interesting. When I'm curious, I have to try it. My most touching and very memorable thanksgiving is when my husband met his mom for the first time. My husband is adopted and unfortunately his adopted parents werent the most loving parents and he ended up being abused as a kid. Because of that he always had an emptiness and always wondered what it would be like to know what his biological mom was like. He posted his info on an adoption website and sure enough someone cantacted him and he found his mom. It was just a few days before thanksgiving so we drove to Idaho to meet her. Usually it is a very nervous time to meet your future inlaws for the first time but my husband and I got to meet them together! I will never forget the joy in their eyes!!

Pear pie
1 unbaked pie shell
1 large can drained pears
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3 T. flour
1 c. whipping cream
put pears into pie shell. pour well stirred mixture over pears. Bake at 350 for about 45min. to 1 hr.

Darcy said... #

I didn't mean to send the last message as anonymous.

Lynne said... #

My Thanksgiving disaster was pretty small when I think about it, but I was kind of miffed at the time. My garage disposal broke right before the meal. The sink was full of water. I couldn't do dishes. What was kind of cool is I had 6 men standing around my sink trying to figure out how to fix it. Gave them all something to do.

Next day my brother came over and put in a new one for me.

Erica said... #

My thanksgiving story- Our first thanksgiving together is my fave memory. As newlyweds I was so excited to make our own meal. So we ate our meal. Then went to my parents ate there, and then went to my inlaws and ate there. Yeah we were stuffed that day but its a fave memory of mine.

Bonnie from Iowa said... #

One Thanksgiving at my house, my brother-in-law decided to make his apple stuffing and put the turkey on a cookie sheet covering the whole turkey with a tent of aluminum foil. It made a "bag" all the way around the turkey and it turned out great. Only one problem, when he went to check it he accidentally tore the foil and all the juices came rushing down the eye level oven into the cookbook drawer below and onto the floor. What a mess!!! Ruined almost all the cookbooks but I still have a couple that have just a few pages damaged. I laugh every time I use them!

alison said... #

a few years ago we decided to smoke our turkey on the grill. we had followed the recipe and it looked gorgeous but when we ate it it tasted like an ashtray. it was so bad but nobody complained about it. my husband would still love to smoke one but i don't want to run the risk of terrible turkey.

Anonymous said... #

A few years back my SIL hosted our Thanksgiving Dinner. We sat there for hours and hours waiting on the Turkey to be done..come to find out, she did not have the heat set at the correct temp on the stove. Thank Goodness someone brought Chicken and Dumplins to dinner that evening. So needless to say we had all the fixin's without the Turkey! said... #

We have made this before and it is awesome!

Miss Terious said... #

I've never actually cooked my own turkey before, so this would be awesome to win! My Thanksgiving blooper is courtesy of my Grandmother-in-law. The whole extended family got together a few years ago and threw a potluck dinner. Well, GMIL was supposed to bring a pie that was wrapped in foil in her fridge. It comes time to have some pie, someone takes off the foil and discovers... a cold piece of pizza. It was *hilarious* and 4 years later people are still talking about it.

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Welcome To My Kitchen said... #

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The Manintvelds said... #

Up until I was about in my early 20's, I NEVER ate my Mama's cornbread stuffing .. I always thought that plain ol' ordinary bread stuffing was the best thing possible for Thanksgiving. Every year, my Mama would beg me to try it, that I'd like it if I just tried it once .. always NO! Got a wild hair one year and I said, 'ok, Mama .. let me give it a taste ..' .. I was so ashamed of myself for going so long without ever savoring this wonderous and tasty specimen of gastronomic perportions! I now can't go one Thanksgiving without her cornbread stuffing .. she's not cooking anymore but, I've taken over her recipe and fix it for my family every year now .. guess you can't teach an old dog a new trick every once in a while .. ;-)

scrambledhenfruit said... #

I remember the Thanksgiving that my little brother sobbed "Pedro!" when the turkey was brought in. (It wasn't really Pedro-his pet turkey- but he sure thought it was. We had to let him go outside and see Pedro before we could resume our meal.

Hannah said... #

I always make a green bean casserole since it's one of my husband's favorite dishes....but I also use the holiday season to try out lots of new desserts!

Darlene said... #

My favorite memory is of going to my newly-married aunt's house. This poor girl had never learned to boil water. When she married, all she could cook was scrambled eggs. So...5 months after the wedding, she's having ALL the family over to her LITTLE house for T'day dinner.

I can still see this tiny oven with the door open and the sight of the turkey on fire. And while she was dealing with that, she burned the canned corn and then ended up with lumps in the gravy.

45 years later, it's a funny story, thought at the time, she was in tears. But for years, there was an ongoing joke about that Thanksgiving.

Come to think of it, ALL the rest of their T'days have either been at her mom's, my mom's or at a restaurant! I never paid attention to that fact before, but I wonder WHY??? lol

jayne said... #

I remember having to get dressed up because Grandma & Grandpa were coming over for dinner and setting the table with the good china and silverware! The smells from the kitchen were fantastic.

stacy said... #

The first time I made a turkey right after we got married I found the bag with the neck and the giblets in it. Oops! Fortunately all the people we had over didn't laugh too hard at me...

Stacia said... #

My mom makes the best stuffing. It is definitely THE dish I hold out for.

girliefriend said... #

We've always used the paper bag method. Nothing better. The only thing we did different was we didn't put the roasting pan inside the bag, but the bag inside the pan. Still made the best gravy. Yum! Can't wait for Thanksgiving.

Anonymous said... #

Very interesting way to cook a Turkey. May try it. Thanks Ratnay1

jannybelle said... #

My blooper is actually quite common - when I cooked my first turkey I didn't know the giblets were INSIDE the bird! I just cooked the turkey giblets and all. I didn't find them until I went to carve the bird!

momof2girls said... #

My favorite memory is when I was little I always helped my mom make the Jello Salad. It was a tradition in our family to have this at the table and it was an honor to help make it with her.

PD said... #

Years ago I cooked a turkey in a brown paper bag and it was delicious. I had forgotten about doing it this way and was thrilled to see your recipe for doing it this way!

Val said... #

My favorite blooper is the year we received 2 turkeys from our jobs. I put the first one in the sink in cold water to defrost, and promptly fell asleep! When I woke up the next day, of course the turkey had been at room temp too long to use. So I put the 2nd turkey in the sink to defrost, and yes, I fell asleep again! We had to go and buy a turkey. This time, I set the alarm in case I fell asleep again!

Anonymous said... #

My mother always makes our Thanksgiving dinner - how nice is that? She loves having everyone over and filling the table to the brim. Every year, she forgets to put one thing on the table. We never know what it is, but we kind of joke about it, and she convinces us she has everything out. But sure enough, as we're cleaning up, someone always finds one dish or a basket of rolls that didn't make it to the table. How lucky are we that there is so much food we can't keep track of it? Tammy

Donna Euell said... #

This is not funny but now we laugh about it because it is kind of funny now when we were kids we spent the holidays with my Aunt, Uncle and my cousins we had a huge turkey in the oven and my uncle went to take it out dropped the pan and all and broke his foot had to go to ER and get a cast put on his foot and he was worried about the turkey so we would have turkey for thanksgiving and it was fine it stayed in the pan .

Joy Burkhart said... #

A few years back, we had our nephews and their families over for Thanksgiving dinner. Everything was perfect and I was making cloverleaf rolls with the frozen dough you get at the store. The rolls came out of the oven, perfectly browned, even Martha Stewart would have been proud! I went to tip them out of the muffin pan, and nothing happened! I'd forgotten to spray the pan with Pam (or the store brand)! Had to pry them out with a fork, tearing most of them. These still were delicious, just not a pretty site! Goes to show ya, blondes can't talk and bake at the same time! LOL!

Would love to get the certificate for the turkey, too. The brown bag idea sounds like a winner!

Alison said... #

One year, my mom asked my dad to put a casserole in the oven while we were at church. When we got home, it was in the oven, cooking, yeah! When we took it out and removed the foil it had a weird oily film over the top. Turned out, he didn't take the plastic wrap off before putting on the foil and putting it in the oven.

Kathy A said... #

I have not heard of cooking a turkey like that, but very interesting! I love Thanksgiving, it was always an amazing memory for me. But, since my grandmother passed away 5 years ago, it hasn't been so great. The family doesn't get together, and as hard as I try to duplicate the day, it never works out. But I love the turkey and dressing!!

CMcFadden said... #

I was just listening to the radio this morning and they were talking about this recipe! :)

Maryjmo said... #

I can't wait to try cooking the "Butterball" in a brown bag. Last year we left the turkey cooking to my brother in-law who was so excited about cooking the turkey on the grill... and then he took a nap..I can assure you he won't be in charge of turkey this year...thanks for the great idea...

Auntie E said... #

Love those bags. Use them a lot in my cooking.
I have given you an award and tasty link on my Kitchen site. Hope you will drop by to check it out.

Nickie said... #

Thanksgiving is my all time fav!!! One year I tried making a carrot casserole & it called for shortening (which I don't buy) so I borrowed some from my neighbor. but it was rancid, which I did not know shortening could go rancid! so it was cooking & stunk up my house horribly!!!!! so i thought something must have spilled in the oven & I tried the casserole & almost died!!! it left such a nasty & horrible film in my mouth & I couldnt taste anything for the rest of the day. Thank God for leftovers!!!

fourkidsmom said... #

My family always goes to my sisters for Thanksgiving BUT I always cook our favorite dishes myself to have our own "leftovers".

Hannah grace said... #

we always make these for thanksgiving,its fun for all of the kids.I am not a big turkey fan but we make two because we have a family of 12 and we need two.Here is the recipe,

* 1-1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon chocolate frosting, divided
* 24 fudge-striped cookies
* 72 pieces candy corn
* 24 milk chocolate kisses
* 24 red-hot candies


1. Spread 1-1/2 cups frosting on the bottoms of cookies.
2. For feathers, insert three pieces each of candy corn in a fan shape into frosting. Place a chocolate kiss on each cookie for the body.
3. For wattles, attach a red-hot to the side of each kiss with a dab of remaining frosting.

Yield: 2 dozen.

here is a picture

Connie Pruitt said... #

The first turkey I baked, I left the little bag of giblets and neck inside it. I was shocked when I served it.

BPansy said... #

a blooper! ...the pies were cooling beautifully... all lined up along the counter just the perfect picture... until we noticed the kitty prints!! ...the kitty decided, altho no witnesses, to trott down the line!

Jennifer N said... #

This is how I make my turkey every year- I got this from my Moma and I love to do it this way because the turkey is done when you wake up and it is one less thing to worry about!
Brine, prep, etc your turkey then place it in the oven with legs facing back. Turn on oven at 500 degrees for one hour then turn off and do not open the door until morning. I do it an hour before bed and when you wake up a great turkey!

Anonymous said... #

My memory is growing up our Thanksgiving dinner was at Shoneys. Our grandparents had passed on so this was what we did. Sounds kinda silly but it was a tradition. Now we are all grown and have children so we take turns hosting now.

Lois--Huckleberry Lady said... #

Hi, A couple of years ago, my mother started cooking the turkey in the brown paper bag. Really good!!!!

Becky said... #

I tried the paper bag method last year and it was really good!

Sheila said... #

I love your site Tina. I would love to try this. My favorite memory is eating at my Grandmother's who has passed now. All of my cousins and Aunts and Uncles were there and we all enjoyed the day.

Jessie said... #

That sounds like a really neat way to do a turkey! ;)

My favorite memory of Thanksgiving is taking my son to his first thanksgiving. He was only 6 1/2 months old and he had a lot of fun playing and sucking on his fingers! He is now 2 1/2 and likes to still play in his food, but now with teeth he doesn't suck on his fingers lol.

Anonymous said... #

One of my Thanksgiving bloopers happened the year I was in charge of making dessert for our family gathering. I was very proud of how beautiful and tall my layered chocolate cake turned out. That is until we began slicing it and I found out I'd forgotten to take the wax paper off the bottom of the layers before icing them!

Monica said... #

I am so going to try this recipe this year. I haven't had much luck with getting the "perfect" turkey in all my 18 years of cooking Thanksgiving dinner. Maybe this will be my year. :)

Kay Little said... #

Have you ever thought that the oven was on when you put your turkey in and find out that the oven was off and your turkey had not been cooking. Well, that happened to me a couple of years ago. I thought I would panic and then I thought I would cry and then I thought about laughing! That was all of my emotions all together at one time. We had a really late Thanksgiving dinner that year and I don't think anyone complained a bit. You just feel so responsible for everything turning out perfect that you take on all the stress. I learned that year that life is great whether you eat your Thanksgiving dinner on time or not! Blessings, K

Topher said... #

My memory was making mashed potatoes with way too much salt. That was definitely not a dish that made it very far on Thanksgiving. Thanks for the giveaway!


zekks at yahoo dot com

Tania QT said... #

Interesting way to cook a Turkey!!
I always cook mine with chiles, hehe, my american husband love it, because is really juicy. Last year in Thanksgiving I cooked the turkey, in the begining my in- laws were afraid to eat, because they were thinking was hot and spicy, but not. Now I'm the official turkey cooker, lol.

beth said... #

Wow, i'm another one who has never heard of cooking a turkey in a brown bag.
One year after spending Thanksgiving away from home, i decided i wanted to make a complete turkey dinner just because i love the leftovers. So the Saturday after Thanksgiving, i got up early and started cooking. i never really looked at the clock. Next thing i knew, dinner was ready at 10:30 am. I woke up my college age son and told him dinner was served. I can still picture the look on his face and his astonished "really".

Margie Huddleston said... #

I will just say that my favorite food memory is broccoli cheese casserole. My mom made it so often, and we all loved it. I don't even try to make it, just go to her house to eat some! :)

Dora said... #

My favorite memory is growing up. My mom would spend the entire day cooking a "traditional" Thanksgiving. This was a wonderful treat for us since I'm first generation Mexican-American and did usually get to eat "American" food. Thanksgiving is still our favorite holiday and we always go all out! LOVE spending time with the family!!

Cowchipper said... #

great memories of everyone showing up at my moms, each of would bring something to the dinner so she didn't have to do it all. miss her!

Anonymous said... #

Love going to my mothers and the family coming. Seeing family you haven't seen in a while like mini reunions. Good memories.


Anonymous said... #

One thanksgiving I ate all the pumpkin pie before anyone else could have some. It was good but I sure got in trouble.

J. Banda

Anonymous said... #

I always travel to another town for the holiday but last yr a few of my friends came here and we went to another friend of mine's place. We had a great time and I wasn't tired for a change!

Dave R

Julie said... #

When I was little every year my family would drive 3 hours to gramma's house and meet ALL of my dad's side of the family for a feast...we usually brought a pie. One year, however, we all got in the van to leave (thanksgiving morning) and the van wouldn't start! We had to have thanksgiving at home by ourselves. We ended up having to eat chicken because all of the turkeys at the store were gone! Good times:) Also, I made the brown bag turkey once..yum!

Anonymous said... #

memory of me being old enough to help my mom in the kitchen. I helped make the pumpkin pie, deviled eggs, and a few other things. I loved that thanksgiving and wished we had more like them.

Anonymous said... #

I love thanksgiving because it is that time of yr for my ex & his family 2 start making tamales. I love tamales. Don't get me wrong I love turkey too but like Girl Scout cookies....the tamales only come ONCE a yr.

A Chipman

Anonymous said... #

I really enjoy thanksgiving because it is the only time my sister cooks GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE. She also make gravy the way my mother made it and it is delicious! She is really a good cook.


Anonymous said... #

A favorite Thanksgiving recipe:

I'm really the only one who likes this but I keep making it each and every year anyway.

Cranberry Relish

1 seedless orange-unpeeled-cut into large chunks
1 apple -cored - cut into large chunks
2 cups fresh cranberries
1/2 cup sugar(I use Sweet N Low equivalent)
1/4 cup pecans

Place all ingredients in food processor that has been fitted
with it's metal cutting blade.
Process for 1 to 2 minutes, or until finely chopped and thoroughly
mixed, scraping down the sides of the container as needed.
Serve immediately or transfer to an airtight container and chill
until ready to serve.

Bert Detraz
Hopkinsville, Ky.

Julie H said... #

Tina, I've been doing the brown bag turkey for several years and it comes out perfect every time...can't imagine cooking it any other way!

Here's a link to a favorite recipe that we prepare for Tday:

Corn Fritter Casserole


kathy said... #

My husband's family has a farm and the first year i realized we were eating a home grown turkey was a eye opener for me!

Anonymous said... #

I have always loved Thanksgiving, and one of my happy memories when I was a child was getting to break the wishbone with my brother or sister. I would love to win that turkey!

Anonymous said... #

My favorite Thanksgiving memory was when we were children and we lived on a military base, my father was in the army. The military provided a meal for soldiers and their families out in the desert range. It was an hour drive, but the food was good and they had decorated everything with turkeys and cornucopia's and there were plates with candy corn. To this day I just love candy corn. It was a good memory because we got to see where our father worked and to be with the men he worked with and their families.
Thank you everyone for sharing your memories, it is nice to share good times.

Jenny Sunshine said... #

The first turkey that I ever cooked on my own, I had no idea which way was up or down... I ended up cooking it breast down- which didn't give me the beautiful presentation, but the white meat stayed so moist that I cook all my birds that way now!

cindi said... #

WE had just moved to the south and had no family to share thanksgiving with so we just loaded up our family of 6 kids and headed out to Fort DeSoto and had the most wonderful time eating our Turkey Dinner at the Beach.

Becca (Pealer) Rhodes said... #

Hi, Tina! Thanks for posting this recipe! I'll have to try it! I'm getting excited for Thanksgiving this year, but it will be a little different this time. One of my favorite traditions has been to share the wishbone from the turkey with my brothers. We'd each grab a side and pull. My Dad always made sure we got the wishbone when he was done carving the bird. He passed away the day after Thanksgiving last year so it will be tough to carve the turkey this year without our Dad doing the honors.

Tina Butler said... #

Forwarded entry

Several years ago, my husband and I decided to go RVing for the Thanksgiving holidays. I took a small turkey to cook in the RV's oven and I prepared the side dishes
ahead of time, to be heated in the microwave. The outside temperatures were in the 90s, so we had the RV's air conditioning going full blast. All of the fuses
blew out with the oven, microwave and A/C going at the same time. We
were camping out in the wilderness with no nearby stores or service stations open that day. Needless to say, we ate pecan and pumpkin pie for our holidaymeal, since that was the only cooked food that we had....

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

Cheryl Villanueva
(Corpus Christi, TX)

LMichelle said... #

This looks so good! I may try this method for cooking the turkey this year instead of deep frying since the oil is so expensive and we seem to only use it once.

Tammy H said... #

Thanks for the recipe, I plan on trying it this year! My memory was about 10 years ago when most of my sibling and their kids and my parents all got together at my sisters house! So much fun to cook for a large group with all the ladies sharing recipes and the men watching football.

Anonymous said... #

I love Thanksgiving pumpkin and apple pie are my favorites!

carrie said... #

I know this sounds too easy. But seriously, I always look forward to a bag of Ruffles and onion dip. Just a pint of sour cream and lipton onion soup mix stirred in. We always have this for an appetizer before the real deal. Love it.

Jac said... #

Our first thanksgiving together and I was making gravy on the stove top and the dish literally EXPLODED ALL OVER. I was mortified while my (now) husband snickered in the background.

Amanda said... #

My favorite thanksgiving memory is baking all the pies with my mom the night before one else wanted to help so that was just Mom and Me time that I will never forget!

Anonymous said... #

Ive never heard of baking the turkey this way! i remember one year my ex mil caught the oven bag on fire, it got too close to the heating element.. oh and she left the plastic bag full of "stuff" inside too..
lpenniman @

Unknown said... #

One of my favorite things for Thanksgiving is a Smoked Butterball turkey. Inject it with Cajun injector sauce and smoke for 6 to 8 hours depending on the size. The use of apple chips make it more special.We have done the brown bag turkey many years ago and it was great.

Mary Spake said... #

I usually always take all the parts out of the turkey. But One year I forgot and my mom went to take all the veggies that I put in out. They she pulled the bag with all the parts in it out. And asked me if I forgot something in the turkey when I cooked it. You have to understand that My mom is a very good cook. So I was horrified. Embarrassed also.

Unknown said... #

I love the idea of cooking the bird in a bag, but I like the good old southern deep fried turkey. With so many other thing going in the oven it's so much easier to have the men outside, drinking beer and smoking cigars "taking turkey".
Hope you have a great holiday!

Kristy Tyrney said... #

I love to use Oven Bags but I have never tried a brown bag! What a great idea! A blooper I remember when I was about 12 years old I was so excited to pull out one of my favorite things out of the oven, the stuffing. There were two pans of it, I dropped at least half of on the floor. Boy did I cry hard... But now we think back and laugh at how funny it was. For the first time in many years I got to spend an early thanksgiving with my family in Oregon, so this year I was very blessed to be apart of that. Normally it is my husband, little girl and I.
Everyone have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Stormy Wood said... #

How about my first turkey, I didn't know that there was a bag inside with the neck and guts and stuff. It got cooked inside the turkey, surrounded by dressing. Even thou it was 30 years ago, I still get teased!

Shirley Curlee said... #

My mom has made the turkey like this for years and it truly is delicious! my favorite recipe is Sweet Potato Casserole, you can eat it as a side vegetable or as a dessert either way is simply delicious!
4 to 5 cooked and mashed sweet potatoes
1 c. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
2 eggs beaten
1/2 stick margarine
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. milk
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Mix all ingredients well & pour in a casserole dish greased w/ margarine.
Topping: 1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. flour
1/2 sick margarine (cold)
1/2 to 1c. chopped pecans
Mix all topping ingredients and sprinkle crumbs over sweet potato mixture. Bake 350 degrees for 35 minutes until hot and bubbly; Enjoy!

Jo said... #

I love reading about everyone's traditions! My blooper was with my first turkey I cooked. My sister in law told me to make sure I washed the turkey out before stuffing it - well when we sat down to eat the turkey had an odd taste and I guess it must of been the Joy Dish Detergent I used to wash the turkey!!!! I will never live this down :)

Heather said... #

I love the holidays! My favorite memory of Thanksgiving is when my grandma lived in a town about 2 hours away from us. It was such a small town... one of those ones where the term "everybody knows your name" is the truth. Anywho, we'd go up to my grandma's house for Thanksgiving & we'd also do an early Christmas as well since she lived so far away. We'd have a giant Thanksgiving dinner with all the goodies and then we'd get a ton of dessert choices. Everyone would be so stuffed by the time came around for opening presents. I can remember my stepdad falling asleep during present opening more than once (and he would snore SO loud!). Definitely a good memory. I'm lucky enough to still have my grandma around & we still have Thanksgiving at her house, but she's about 10 minutes away from us now. We also still open presents early on Thanksgiving as well. The only thing that's really changed is that the menu isn't nearly as gigantic as it was in the past.

Angie said... #

I hope I am a winner I would LOVE TO get a free turkey. However with that said regardless of the turkey winning I am going to be doing this paper bag trick for Thanksgiving. I will let you know how it goes for me.

DaniJo said... #

Thanksgiving is the start of the Christmas season for us. After we have thanksgiving dinner we start hanging up Christmas decorations. My favorite memory would be when my oldest son wanted me to put out a piece of pumpkin pie thanksgiving night for Santa so he had a snack while he is in town making sure they are being good. So it is now a tradition in our house to make sure that piece of pie is out and waiting with tons of whip cream!

mandyloo said... #

I have memories of my mom thawing the turkey in the bathtub every year!! for days! and I know I cooked the whole bag of giblets in one of mine one year. But my favourite memory is signing up to cook two turkeys for church thanksgiving dinnerand as I was carrying out one, it flipped out of the pan onto my carpet...I picked it up and took it to church and never told :)

Unknown said... #

Our yellow lab Ripley made off with my turkey one year. I was not a happy morning. I love fried turkey also it gives me fond memories of standing under the carport with my granddad while he fried it up.

Anonymous said... #

I loves getting to split the wishbone. As the baby of the family I was always the one that got to break it with my Dad. A memory I will forever treasure!

contester1982 @ gmail. com

Jess said... #

My first ever attempt to make a Thanksgiving dinner was for a group of young single Marines who could not go home for the holidays. It was almost a bust when I called my mom to complain that I had no turkey neck, which I needed to make the gravy. She asked if I had checked both cavities of the turkey, and I said "there's two?!" Who knew? Thankfully, I had just put the bird in, so I took it out and found the neck, in a bag, no less! The dinner turned out great and the guys were well fed and happy. Thank goodness for moms!

Anonymous said... #

well it's the old story I was 16 and wanted. to cook the thanksgiving dinner, I don't know where to start but I left the gizzards and neck in the turkey and in measuring stuff I wasn't quite sure what some of the abbreviations ment, so when I used pepper corns I put a few more in than I need into the gravy (you wouldn't even want to know about the gravy) my Dad said it looked like a rabbit ran thru the gravy. But you know he sat and ate dinner, my Mother had passed away the year before and it was the first meal I had ever cooked.

Anonymous said... #

my funniest memory - i was about 20 years old....couldn't cook....had to fix thanksgiving dinner for in-laws who i didn't like or fit in with since they were rich & snooty.....had to fix all frozen food since i couldn't cook so i was already embarrassed beyond belief....ok, here's the good part.....i had a pet parakeet that, if you let it out of his cage, would sit on your shoulder or head or whatever just to make sure he's near you.....i had him locked in his cage because i knew he was like that......ok, so my in-laws HAD to let him out so they could see him.....well, we were all sitting at the dining room table eating & i'm already so embarrassed that i can't stand parakeet flies over & lands on the rim of my mother-in-law's glass of tea & starts bobbing up & down getting himself a drink like one of those glass birds you see......THEN sits down IN the glass of tea & starts flopping around taking a bath......i'm sitting there waiting for them to look down their noses at me but then all of a sudden they all die laughing......moment over......i will never forget that......

Evan 12A said... #

My grandpa, with his shiny new electric knife, brought of its box in a show of pomp and circumstance, then cutting into that perfect Turkey, and bits and pieces of the turkey flying all over the table and guests,because the knife had a problem, and in the end, it may not have looked so pretty...but tasted devine!

Nana said... #

MY BLOOPER Many years ago - my first year married bought a 20LB turkey and stuffed that baby in a 4 lb pan, not only that I stuffed it and did not know to pull the inard bag out. My house smelled like fish , and my poor mother upon walking in knew just what I had done. Each year after that my dad would call me early thanksgiving morning to ask me if I have a big enough pan and took those inard bag out ! My Daddy passed away 2001 and I so miss that phone call with so many others :(


Jayne said... #

When my husband and I were newly married we would visit the turkey farm to pick out a turkey. Thankfully we saw only the freezer section and the free roam turkeys and not the in-between steps that got the turkey into the freezer.

Anonymous said... #

My favorite memory was from 3 years ago with my family at Thanksgiving. My mom always makes pecan pies. I'm not a big fan, but when our meals is over, I am always in charge of Grandma and the desserts. Well I went to cut the pecan pie and it literally bent the knife. I couldn't believe my eyes. What was I doing wrong?? Well, it wasn't mom had cooked them too long...instead...she made pecan brittle. Well I brought what I could to the table and announced the brittle was here!!! My mom wasn't amused....I was!!!! Every year, I now ask where the pecan brittle is??? Followed by no laughes from my mom=) Julie McNee-Ruger

Ginger @ Crock Pot Recipe Exchange said... #

My great aunt Callie had a wood cook stove (and never did agree to getting an electric one). She not only cooked the turkey in a brown paper bag, but the apple pie too. Now you talk 'bout good.... those two things were irresistible! Good stuff, good stuff!

LMichelle said... #

I posted a comment but forgot my favorite Thanksgiving memory. (I shouldn't do things early in the morning....) I lived in Rome, Italy, during the 80s & 90s & my Italian landlady, who was also a good friend, LOVED anything American, especially Thanksgiving. Every year she has Thanksgiving for her American & Italian friends on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. She was so thrilled when I introduced her to sweet potato casserole as sweets are her favorite. I had to bring it every Thanksgiving & give her the recipe when I moved back to the States. It was nice to celebrate the holiday so far from home with such good friends.

Heather said... #

I think back to my younger years when my grandparents were still living and all of my mom's family would be at their house for Thanksgiving. I remember the dishes, the tables, the seating arrangements, everything about their house. We were so happy to spend this time together each year because everyone lived in different cities.

Nancy said... #

I've never heard of using a brown paper bag to cook a turkey in! Have to try that one. I think I've done the one goof-up that many have done...forgetting to take the giblets out of the turkey before cooking!!

Karan said... #

My favorite memories of Thanksgiving tend to go way back to my childhood. I remember the last Thanksgiving in my Great Grandmas home. Grandma cooked the big bird and all the rest of the food on a huge big wooden cookstove. Oh she had a apartment sized electric but very seldom used it. The bird was perfect and I can remember my dad and two cousins fighting over who would get the turkey legs. Dasd let the cousins have it. I think he must have been just playing around with them cause next week dad will be 82 and to this day does not eat turkey legs. All us kids got to go out sledding after dinner while the ladies all cleaned the kitchen up then we all got to take a sleighride with the neighbors in a big sleigh pulled by two horses. It was so fun. Though great grandma lived several more years we always went one year to my grandmas and the next to my Aunts house. The family had just grown to large for great grandmas house.Those were the Good Old Days.

Gail_OK said... #

I would have never believed it if you hadn't posted the brown bag turkey recipe and pictures. Golly, what next?? I remember one Thanksgiving when my daughter, Michelle, volunteered to make cookies for our dessert buffet. She accidentally used salt instead of sugar in the recipe-so they were fairly inedible (not that we didn't try to eat them LOL). But bless her heart, she tried.

tsmith said... #

My biggest Thanksgiving problem is getting the turkey and the rest of the meal ready at the same time. I can never seem to coordinate the turkey getting done with the rest of the meal. It is either way to soon or it takes much longer. I have yet to find that happy place where it gets done about the same time the rest of the food finishes cooking.

KellyB said... #

One year we visited my bil and family in Pennsylvania over Thanksgiving break. We all got up and drove to Washington D.C. on Thanksgiving morning. We spent the day at different museums. Perfect time to go because the crowds are THIN! We had Thanksgiving meal on Wednesday and nobody complained!

Jean said... #

My favorite memories of Thanksgiving are just getting all of the siblings and kids together at mom and dad's house. After eating "the works", we would go outside and gather all the pecans that had fallen. It just doesn't seem like Thanksgiving unless I can pick up some pecans!

Jodi said... #

My fondest memories of Thanksgiving involved putting up the Christmas tree with my mom as the turkey cooked and the house smelled yummy! Now that she has passed, I plan on continuing the same tradition with my children.

JC said... #

My favorite memories are all family members got together at grandma's and enjoyed the turkey feast.

Rachelle S said... #

I will share a blooper that happened just the other year. We had the oven stuffed with all the Thanksgiving sides, baking away...I put my turkey breat roullade in, and realized a little later I forgot to add the broth to the pan! So I went and added it, and my glass pan exploded!! Glass went everywhere, even in the side dishes that weren't covered! We managed to save the food and it was a good laugh afterwards.
*Do NOT add cold liquids to a hot pan!


Rachelle S said... #

I will share a blooper that happened just the other year. We had the oven stuffed with all the Thanksgiving sides, baking away...I put my turkey breast roulade in, and realized a little later I forgot to add the broth to the pan! So I went and added it, and my glass pan exploded!! Glass went everywhere, even in the side dishes that weren't covered! We managed to save the food and it was a good laugh afterwards.

*Do not put cold liquid into a hot pan!


Jess said... #

I can't wait to make this for my inlaws this year!!!

I have a little blooper!

Our second Thanksgiving after I was married, we weren't able to make it home to our families.
I was so excited to make my first Thanksgiving Dinner!! Even if it was just for the two of us.
I even made a couple of dishes ahead of time!!!
One of those being sweet potatoes with marshmallows!! I had put plastic wrap over it and put it in the fridge!
When it was time to bake my sides, I put them in the oven!!
I checked on them to see how nicely everything was coming along and noticed there was something wrong with the sweet taters!


That was the last time I ever did any advance prep!! :)

Debra "Deb" Dresden Disney-Dior said... #

This recipe sounds like something I'm in dire need of. I haven't made a "good turkey" since 2001 -- the year I moved into my new home. I don't know "what" I'm doing wrong, but Dave believes it's the "freezer's fault." I'll go along with that...I wish. I've tried the roasting bags, the foil tents, only wrapping the legs and wings until the final hour of roasting, basting every 1/2 hour, brining it for 12 hours, 26 minutes and 3 seconds, I even purchased a $60.00, 12 lb., organic turkey, but NOTHING I did could produce an edible turkey. Nothing has been remotely acceptable. I DID purchase my turkey for this year. I COULD have gotten a 20 lb. turkey that was raised in Iceland for a grand total of $7.32, but I chose a Lil Butterball for $13.99. This turkey, is SO cute. I can carry it, frozen, in the palm of one hand. Growing up my Mom ALWAYS chose HUGE Butterballs, that took a team of football players to place in the oven and to take it out of the oven. Thanks, Tina, I AM going to use this paper bag technique. If it doesn't work, I'm buying a new freezer! If not, maybe you'll spend Thanksgiving with me next year? Bring the paper bag! I hope I win a turkey, to replace the one my freezer is NOW ruining!

Debra "Deb" Dresden Disney-Dior said... #

I forgot to add my blooper! The first year my newly married sister made Thanksgiving dinner, she invited the entire family over for dinner and wanted to impress us with the BEST stuffing we've ever eaten. She used four POUNDS of butter. No, her name isn't Paula Deen! She thought the more butter she added, the better the stuffing would be. It looked like an oil spill! Come to think of it, her stuffing would go great with my turkey!

AStarrA said... #

Oh gosh I'm glad I found this! I always make my turkey in a brown paper bag and when I tell people they look at me like I'm insane!! Isn't it so good. That's what I was going to write about, my fave being the brown bag :) I also make a killer sweet potato casserole.

Robin said... #

We have been brown bagging a turkey for years and years and years..It must be about 100 years or more.. My mom (she's 88) learned from her mom and I am sure grandma learned from her mom.. and down the line.. But we stuff the turkey with stuffing.. and put some veggie oil on the bag... It comes out perfect every time..

Friendship Crossing said... #

I have never heard/tried the brown bag turkey method, I have always used the Reynolds oven bags and they come out very moist and tender. I'd like to try the bag method sometime.

I had never baked a turkey all on my own till I was in my early 40's! My parents always had us over and they always fixed the turkey. Now my hubby helps me w/it, cuz it's usually a great BIG bird!


Anonymous said... #

I cooked turkeys in brown paper bags for years. I became so popular with my inlaws that i cook All the familys turkeys for the past 43 years.

rindyrue said... #

I usually use a big lasagna type pan and cove the bird and pan with reynold's wrap. However, I can totally see the benefits of allowing the bird to breathe while cooking.
Last year I had my turkey smoked at Sonny's BBQ and it was delish, but this year the family is requesting I go back to brining it. I was wondering if you had ever tried a brine, and if so, how do you think it compares to the veggie/fruit combo you use for stuffing.
Cindy Lou

Pappys said... #

I too have cooke in brown bag for years. Was told not to do it with recycled bags. It is so good to see so many people still doing it. I shall return to my roots

ECL said... #

Been brown bag cooking turkey for 10 years and this is the only way I do Thansksgiving. The only thing I may suggest is cooking at a lower temp (200-250) for 8-10 hours, which I will be doing this year......