This citrus sage roasted turkey is sponsored by ALDI.

We’re finishing off Thanksgiving week with the showstopper centerpiece – a citrus butter roasted turkey! 

citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

Super flavorful, roasted to perfection with crispy golden skin, this turkey cannot be beat. It’s my favorite way to prepare a turkey for any time of year, but on Thanksgiving especially, it makes a delicious statement. To say it’s incredible wouldn’t even do it justice.

turkey rubbed with butter in a roasting pan

Gosh, 2020 is just such a weird year. Are you planning on celebrating Thanksgiving this year? I live for Thanksgiving – it’s basically my superbowl. Because I cook so much, it’s an easy meal for me to prepare and one that I also enjoy. I also LOVE cooking for family and friends. I had such high hopes this year of doing a fun Friendsgiving and then our traditional Thanksgiving, but 2020 has dashed those hopes.

Instead, we are keeping things small in our house, with just our parents who are already in our pod of people that we’ve been seeing. I am so thankful that they all live close and are still able to do this. If you’re not in the same boat, all the love to you. 

ALDI chardonnay

So, today I’m showing you how to perfect this Thanksgiving meal – by grabbing your turkey at ALDI! ALDI has frozen Butterball turkeys that you can grab and the best part is – they come in a variety of sizes. 

It’s perfect!

melting butter and orange rind

I’m super excited to partner with ALDI today to bring you the MOST delicious Citrus Butter and Sage Turkey recipe. Regardless of how you plan to spend your Thanksgiving this year – with a small group of family or virtually on zoom, or even just in a household of two – ALDI has everything you need at seriously unbeatable prices. Their products are so high quality while being incredibly affordable – which helps make this crazy 2020 Thanksgiving a breeze. 

roasted turkey in a roasting pan

I highly recommend making ALDI your one stop shop this holiday season. You can shop in store, with curbside pickup, or with Instacart, the latter being my preference. I’ve been able to find all of my ingredients, from cranberries to potatoes to pumpkin at ALDI with great success. It’s one of my favorite places! 

citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

Now the citrus sage roasted turkey!

Let’s do a quick run-down. 

To make this incredible turkey recipe the star of the show, we’re doing a dry brine of sage salt, then a cheesecloth baste of butter, wine and citrus. It may sound fancy, but I promise it’s simple. And it will be the best turkey you’ve ever tasted!

citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

This recipe is based off of my butter and wine roasted turkey. This method is honestly the BEST way of preparation. I’ve done it for years and everyone is always blown away at how beautiful the turkey looks, but also how wonderfully juicy and tender it tastes. I’m telling you, it’s foolproof! I won’t prepare my turkey any other way. 

citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

The first step is doing a dry brine. Grab the Butterball turkey from ALDI this season and let it thaw in the fridge. Make sure you leave enough time to do this – you want the turkey fully thawed at least two days before you roast it. Once the turkey is thawed and prepared, mix together kosher salt and Stonemill Ground Sage. Sprinkle it inside the turkey, under the skin, on the skin – everywhere! 

Once this is done, let the turkey sit in the fridge for 24 to 48 hours – uncovered. This is the secret to extra crispy, delicious golden skin. Trust me. 

carved citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

When it comes time to roast, the Exquisite Collection Chardonnay from ALDI is your new BFF. We’re going to infuse melted butter with citrus rind and then stir in the Chardonnay. Soak a piece of cheesecloth in the wine and butter mixture, then place it directly on the turkey and roast it. It looks kind of funky at first, but it is DIVINE. Your house will smell like the best Thanksgiving candle that could ever exist.

I mean, when we’re using this much butter and wine, the turkey MUST be incredible! 

carved citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

While the turkey roasts, we continue to baste it with the remaining citrus butter and wine mixture. This allows it to stay juicy and tender, while also providing incredible flavor for the drippings. You can use those drippings to make foolproof gravy, which is a huge hit too!

I like to let the turkey rest for 30 minutes or so. Then I carve it and serve. We also always have leftovers – which come in great use for turkey and dumplings, tortilla soup, ramen or even breakfast sandwiches.

carved citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

I cannot express enough how absolutely fabulous this turkey is. The flavor is top notch. The meat is perfectly seasoned with a bit of earthy taste from the sage. It’s juicy from the butter and chardonnay baste, with a slight hint of citrus. It’s every Thanksgiving flavor I could dream of! 

citrus sage roasted turkey recipe

Citrus Sage Roasted Turkey

Citrus Butter and Sage Roasted Turkey

This citrus sage roasted turkey is cooked to perfection with a mixture of orange rind, butter, sage and dry white wine. It's delicious!
5 from 29 votes
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  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Stonemill Dried Sage
  • 1 12 pound Butterball Turkey from ALDI
  • 2 cups Exquisite Collection Chardonnay
  • 12 tablespoons butter, browned and cooled to solid room temp, for melting
  • 1 orange, the rind removed
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature


  • Make sure your turkey is thawed! It can take a few days to thaw a turkey (usually 1 day per 5 pounds!) so plan accordingly. You want to dry brine your turkey at least overnight, so plan for that too! I also like to make sure my fridge has space for a day or two of brining.
  • In a bowl, stir together the kosher salt and sage.
  • A day or two before making your turkey, pat it completely dry with paper towels. Place a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet. You can place paper towels on the sheet to absorb any liquid that drips. Place the turkey on the wire rack and use the dry brine - separate the skin from the meat and rub the brine directly on the turkey breast and legs. Sprinkle some inside the cavity. Rub it all over the skin. Place the turkey uncovered (yes, uncovered!) in the fridge - make sure it's not touching anything. Doing this will result in deliciously crispy and golden skin! This can be done for 24 to 48 hours.
  • When you're ready to cook the turkey, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Take the turkey out at least 60 minutes before. You can pat it dry with paper towels if needed, but do not rinse it. Truss the legs together.
  • Place the turkey in a roasting pan, breast-side up. At this point, you can fill the cavity with stuffing if desired. If you choose not to do stuffing, you can add a mixture of fresh herbs, like sage, thyme and rosemary. Or you don’t have to do anything! Tuck the wings under the turkey.
  • Combine the 12 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan with the orange rind. Heat until melted and the butter begins to sizzle. Turn off the heat and let it sit for 10 minutes.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the Chardonnay and the melted butter with orange rind. Take a piece of cheesecloth and fold it until you have a 4-layer, 12-inch square. Submerge it in the wine and butter and let it soak for 10 minutes.
  • Rub the turkey all over with the softened butter. Remove the cheesecloth from the wine butter and barely wring it out. Cover the turkey breast with the 4 layer cheesecloth. Roast for 30 minutes. Baste the turkey with the remaining butter and wine mixture in the bowl.
  • Reduce the heat to 350 degrees F. Roast the turkey for 1 hour 45 minutes or about 2 hours, basting every 30 minutes with the butter and wine in the bowl, or the drippings from the bottom of the roasting pan.
  • After 2 hours, gently remove the cheesecloth. Continue to baste the turkey liberally with the drippings or the butter and wine leftovers. Roast it for about 60 more minutes, until the temperature taken in the thigh reaches 180 degrees F.
  • Once the turkey is finished, let it rest for 30 to 60 minutes before slicing.

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citrus sage roasted turkey recipe