I brined my turkey but it came out tooooo salty. Any suggestions to save it? It's really good, juicy and tasty. I will cut it up and cook in turkey gravy, but is there something I can do to remove some of the salty taste? I will not be using the turkey drippings from this bird. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


Another idea is to take some of the turkey and use it as a filling for a savory pie.

Start with a light blonde roux, add in low sodium chicken stock, cook that out a bit and then toss in some shredded or cubed turkey. Add veggies and whatever else, and a healthy amount of cooking cream. Taste for seasoning (it might, believe it or not, need a tiny bit of salt)

Use any pastry crust you like, or just put the filling in some ramekins and top with puff pastry to bake. If you need a start to a good pastry crust, try this.

You could do individual pot-pie sorts, or something bigger shepherd's pie style. That's probably a good way to save it and still serve it in a manner similar to what you intended.


If you make good turkey gravy with little or no salt, and simmer and store the turkey in that, I think that's the best you can do. The hard part is making good gravy with low enough salt, since low salt turkey flavor is hard to find.

You might consider a bit of an odd idea. You can make milk gravy with ground turkey, much like what in the Army we called SOS. Use the bare minimum of salt.

Serving the turkey with that, perhaps in an open-faced sandwich, could be good. Consider that with slightly under-seasoned mashed potatoes.

Good Luck! Let us know what you end up doing and your results.

  • I second @Jolenealaska, particularly the white gravy, and would also suggest that, when you get to the end of it, make turkey hash: the addition of potatoes (onions, peppers, eggs) could help the saltiness considerably.
    – Giorgio
    Nov 17 '16 at 2:49
  • The 'on the shingle' idea is probably the best way, and could be quite delicious on a snowflake roll. If you snuck a bit of tarragon into that gravy, it would further help to hide any over-saltedness.
    – Tim Post
    Nov 17 '16 at 17:07

Adjust the salt in your brine because after the fact your kind of well stuck with it. So, in other words, no.


Not all brines are made equal. You may have added too much salt to your solution, or perhaps let your poultry brine for too long.

Brining is the technique of soaking meat in a dilute salt solution until the dissolved salt permeates the muscle tissue. You're shooting for a final concentration of about 0.5% salt throughout. The challenge with brining is getting the meat deep in the interior to be just as salty as the meat on the outside. Unfortunately, it's easy to end up with a steep gradient of saltiness.

The conventional approach of soaking meat in a strong salt solution requires you to pull it out at just the right moment — hard to do without the equivalent of a thermometer for measuring salinity. Resting the meat does allow the salt gradient to even out somewhat, but there's just no avoiding an oversalted exterior and an undersalted interior.

A modernist approach soaks the meat for long periods (up to 24 hours) in a solution having a salt concentration only slightly higher than that target of 0.5%. The risk of oversalting is eliminated. You'll need a brine injector, or a syringe.

This brine works well for poultry:

| Ingredient  | Weight | Volume          | Scaling |
| Water       | 200g   | 200 mL / 2 cups | 10%     |
| Salt        | 12g    | 1 Tbsp          | 0.6%    |
| Poultry     | 2kg    | 1 whole         | 100%    | 


  1. Stir water and salt together to make brine.
  2. Inject the brine as evenly as possible throughout the meat. Place the needle into the neck and back cavities to avoid puncturing the skin.
  3. Refrigerate the brined chicken for 24 hours, uncovered.


Note: Brine keeps indefinitely before use; Brined poultry keeps for up to 24 hours when refrigerated (so, cook between 24 - 48 hours after brining).


Modernist Cuisine at Home: Page 133, 238

  • 1
    Welcome to the site Benjamin. There is a lot of good info here- unfortunately it doesn't actually answer the question. This will help the OP prevent it in the future but they are asking what they can do with the salty turkey now. Nov 17 '16 at 16:58
  • There are several questions which are being asked. Stack is meant to be a QA, rather than a discussion forum. The question as I understood it: "is there something I can do to remove some of the salty taste? ". The answer is no, but I've provided more insight as to why this happened and a solution on how to prevent it for next time - ultimately a more effective approach.
    – Benjamin
    Nov 17 '16 at 18:49
  • 1
    @Benjamin You could add a "While it didn't work out this time, but here's how to do it next time" part to the opening of your answer. The answer is good, it just feels like you didn't read the question (which I'm certain you did) and if you have any ideas on saving any parts of an over-salted turkey those would be welcome too :)
    – Tim Post
    Nov 17 '16 at 19:20
  • 1
    It sort of answers the question because obviously the person that posted the question is using too much salt in their brine and therefore should try a better meat to salt ratio. Nov 22 '16 at 18:32

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