How can you locate a turkey that is not a self-basted or pre-brined turkey? We will show where to look and what to look for.
Where to buy a non self basted turkey? You want to look for a store that carries more premium turkey or organic turkeys. I have had success at Kroger and Whole Foods Market in years past.
Ladies and gentleman.
Boys and girls.
Time for some turkey talk.
This turkey talk is sponsored by one of my email subscribers.
Anyway, I got a question last week asking where one could find a non self basted turkey. What is such a thing? Are there turkeys that actually baste themselves? Are they returning as turkey ghosts ready to baste their former vessel? No. A non self basted turkey is a turkey that is not self basted. Alright there is your answer have a great day.
Let's answer this question first.
🦃 What is a Self Basted Turkey?
A self-basted turkey is a turkey that has an added solution to it. That can be water mixed with chicken or turkey broth, salt, sugar, or any kind of seasoning. It's sort of like brining, just done really bad. This adds weight to the turkey so more money into the company that sells that turkey's pockets. I don't want to pay extra for water.
The idea here is that the turkey is going to be more juicy so is bastes itself or no basting is need.
However is this really the best turkey you can do? When I buy a turkey, I want to buy just a turkey. You know a turkey, turkey. Nothing else added. So in eseence a non self basted turkey.
RELATED - Learn more about What is a Self Basted Turkey?
🔍 How to Find a Non Self Basted Turkey
First thing to know is that a lot of turkeys are self basted turkeys. In fact the majority of them are. If you buy the cheapest frozen turkey your grocery store offers is it going to be a self basted turkey. It's the way of the world. If you want to find one that isn't self basted, here are some options that I have found for you.
Here is one I found at Kroger.
Whole Foods Market is another great place to go for a non self basted turkey. I don't want to say all for sure, but most likely if you are buying an organic turkey you are good to go.
If you see the words "up to % of retained water" that doesn't mean it's self-basted or pre-brined. Often in order to chill a turkey down when it's processed, they will be dunked in cold water. When that happens some of the water can be absorbed. I talk more about this process in my post on Air Chilled Chicken.
Have you a good source for these types of turkeys? Let me know in the comment section below. I will keep adding any more that I find during the season.
👀 What to Look For
How do I know a turkey is not self basted? Simple. Look for the ingredients. May be on a tag, may be on the turkey packaging itself. You should see nothing but turkey.
Here is an example.
🙋 What If I Can't Find One?
Am I a horrible person if I buy a self basted turkey? Well you might be a horrible person but not for that reason 🙂
If the self basted turkey is all you can afford, then buy all means by it. Or if you don't want to spend more per pound. Just so you know you can still brine a self basted turkey. How do I know? I have done it. Again the fact that I bought a self basted turkey does NOT make me a horrible person.
Butterball Turkeys are self basted or pre-brined. The packaging says they contain solution of water, salt, and spices. Even they say you can brine their turkeys as they have instructions to do so on their website.
The reason you might still want to brine one is that the seasoning they add to the turkeys, really isn't enough to really flavor the bird. I do think the texture of a turkey you brined that wasn't a self basted turkey will be better, and might be worth the extra look to hunt one down.