Plan the perfect Paleo Thanksgiving with this easy roasted turkey recipe. Garlic herb butter-basted to perfection, this mouth-watering turkey is truly divine!

a roasted thanksgiving turkey browned with dairy free garlic herb butter

The ultimate food holiday is approaching quickly, and you’re probably already searching for the best, most delicious recipes. Fresh, healthy, homemade food is what my Holiday spread consists of; a table full of Whole30, Paleo, Keto, Dairy Free, and Gluten Free recipes that taste just as good as their classic counterparts. The center of attention for this upcoming celebration, is, of course, the Thanksgiving Turkey. While sometimes daunting, roasting a turkey is actually quite doable! With my perfectly easy roasted turkey recipe, you’ll be a holiday chef in no time!

What Makes This Recipe Work

My roasted turkey is stuffed with fresh herbs and spices and basted in a delicious, homemade, dairy-free garlic herb butter that browns perfectly into a crispy outer skin. With easy, scalable turkey roasting instructions, this recipe is perfect whether you’re serving a turkey that is 12lbs or 20lbs. Roasting turkey has truly never been easier!

Ingredient Notes

Turkey: I order my 12lb turkey from Butcher Box! On 11/5 for 24 hours only, get a FREE turkey + $100 off ($20 off 5 monthly boxes) when you sign up for one of their popular monthly subscription plans. I love ButcherBox because I don’t have to fight holiday lines at the grocery store! My favorite organic meat is delivered to my doorstep! Click here to grab this offer!

Fresh Herbs: For this recipe, I use fresh herbs. They give the roasted turkey so much flavor. I recommend using fresh rosemary, thyme, and sage if you have them!

Garlic Herb Butter: My homemade garlic herb rub is the perfect basting liquid. It keeps the turkey juicy and flavorful, with crispy skin. Delish!

paleo roasted turkey sliced on a white plate with two turkey legs

How to Make a Roasted Turkey

Step 1. Do not freak out! Roasting a turkey may seem like quite the undertaking, but I promise this recipe is prepped in no time and cooks to perfection in your oven. You can do it!

Important Roasting Notes:

  • Bake the turkey for 13-15 minutes per pound of turkey. You want the internal temperature of the bird to be 165. My 12-lb turkey took about 3 hours total.
  • When the turkey has reached an internal temp of 165 degrees (testing it with a meat thermometer in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast), remove it from the oven and tent with foil.
  • Let the turkey rest for 30 minutes before carving.

Mary’s Tips & Tricks

Thawing: Make sure your turkey is completed thawed. The rule of thumb is 24 hours of thawing time for every 5 lbs of turkey. I used a 12-lb turkey, so I thawed mine for about 3 days in the refrigerator.

Gravy: Reserve the drippings so you can make my Best Ever Paleo Gravy! 

a roasted turkey on a plate before being cut.

FAQs

What tools do I need to roast a turkey in the oven? You need a roasting pan and a meat thermometer!

How do I store leftover roasted turkey? Store the roasted turkey in an airtight container for up to one week! Serve it warm or cold as a sandwich with your favorite gluten-free rolls, my homemade orange cranberry sauce, and stuff with mashed potatoes and gravy!

What makes this turkey paleo? Using ghee or vegan butter will make this turkey paleo. If you have a true dairy allergy, make sure to use vegan butter.

How many pounds of turkey per person? Estimate about 1.25 pounds of turkey per person (this includes the weight of the bones!). So if you’re serving 10 people, you’ll need about a 12-13 lb turkey.

How to cut/carve a turkey? When in doubt, Youtube! Here’s the video I watched to learn how to cut a turkey perfectly!

Best Sides to Serve with Thanksgiving Turkey

Creamy Dairy Free Mashed Potatoes

Healthy Green Bean Casserole

Paleo Sweet Potato Casserole

Dairy Free Broccoli Casserole

GF / DF Sausage Apple Herb Stuffing

Creamy Spinach Casserole

Homemade Paleo Orange Cranberry Sauce

“Soy” Glazed Brussels sprouts with Bacon

Whole30 Potatoes Au Gratin

Riced Cauliflower Stuffing

Don’t forget to make a batch of my Thanksgiving Margaritas!

Pin this Recipe!

Paleo Roasted Turkey longpin

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Easy Paleo Roasted Turkey

Plan the perfect Paleo Thanksgiving with this easy roasted turkey recipe. Garlic herb butter-basted to perfection, this mouth-watering turkey is truly divine! Dairy Free, Keto, & Whole30
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Ingredients

  • 1 12-16 lb turkey
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 3-inch pieces of celery
  • 1 lemon, quartered
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 4-5 sage leaves
  • 4-5 springs thyme
  • 2 tsp salt

Herbed Ghee Rub

  • 3/4 cup ghee or vegan butter
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp fresh chopped rosemary
  • 1 tbsp fresh chopped thyme
  • 1 tsp fresh chopped sage

Equipment

  • Roasting pan
  • Meat thermometer

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 325.
  • Make sure your turkey is completed thawed. The rule of thumb is 24 hours of thawing time for every 5 lbs of turkey. I used a 12-lb turkey, so I thawed mine for about 3 days.
  • Let the turkey come to room temperature for about 30 minutes while the oven pre-heats.
  • Remove the neck and giblets from the turkey. Rinse the turkey well inside and out and pat dry with a paper towel.
  • Sprinkle the 2 tsp of salt into the cavity of the turkey. Add in the onion quarters, garlic cloves, celery, lemon, and sprigs of rosemary, thyme, and sage. Tie the legs together using kitchen twine and set the turkey on the roasting rack breast-side up.
  • Add the ghee (or vegan butter) to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave it for about 20 seconds to soften the ghee. Add in the remaining ingredients and stir well.
  • Use your hands to spread the mixture all over the turkey, making sure to get into the crevices and under the skin for extra flavor. Save about 1/4 cup of the mixture and set aside.
  • Bake the turkey for 13-15 minutes per pound of turkey. You want the internal temperature of the bird to be 165. My 12-lb turkey took about 3 hours total.
  • Halfway through baking time, use a pastry brush to brush the remaining ghee herb mixture all over the turkey. You can microwave it to soften before brushing. Tent the bird with foil for the remaining cook time if it looks like it's getting too browned.
  • When the turkey has reached an internal temp of 165 degrees (testing it with a meat thermometer in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast), remove it from the oven and tent with foil. Let it rest for 30 minutes before carving.
  • Reserve the drippings so you can make my Best Ever Paleo Gravy!
  • Enjoy!

Notes

Store the roasted turkey in an airtight container for up to one week! Serve it warm or cold as a sandwich with your favorite gluten-free rolls, my homemade orange cranberry sauce, and stuff with mashed potatoes and gravy!

Nutrition

Calories: 564kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 70g, Fat: 29g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 9g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 261mg, Sodium: 944mg, Potassium: 765mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 233IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 49mg, Iron: 3mg