Brining a Turkey Breast With Apple Cider Vinegar

Whether bedecked with cranberries and stuffing, or thinly sliced and accompanied with a spicy mustard on rye, who can resist a perfectly cooked turkey breast? When properly prepared, turkey breast is moist inside, crispy outside and bursting with flavor. Brining the turkey breast with an acid, such as apple cider vinegar, before cooking tenderizes the meat and provides the poultry with extra moisture and an added level of flavor.

Stuffed turkey breast in a pan. (Image: Issaurinko/iStock/Getty Images)

Step 1

Place a large saucepan over high heat. Pour 4 cups of water into the pan and bring to a boil.

Step 2

Add the salt and sugar, stirring continuously until the sugar has dissolved completely. Remove the pan from heat and stir in 8 cups of cold water.

Step 3

Add the apple cider vinegar, thyme, rosemary, peppercorns and sage to the salt-water mixture. Set aside until it has completely cooled.

Step 4

Rinse the turkey breasts with cold water and pat dry using the paper towels. Place the turkey breasts into the large container. Carefully pour the vinegar mixture over the turkey breasts. If the turkey breasts are not completely submerged in the mixture, add cold water until they are.

Step 5

Cover the container with aluminum foil and place in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours, but no more than 48 hours. When you are ready to cook the turkey breasts, drain the brine, rinse the turkey breasts with cold water and pat dry using paper towels.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 large bucket or container

  • Large saucepan

  • 4 turkey breasts

  • 1 gallon water

  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar

  • 1 cup salt

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 3 tablespoons dried sage

  • 1 tablespoons dried rosemary

  • 2 tablespoons dried thyme

  • 2 tablespoon peppercorns or 1 tablespoon ground pepper

  • Paper towels

  • Aluminum foil

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