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Best Turkey Injection Marinade Recipes

Are you searching for the ultimate turkey injection marinade recipe? Look no further, as we have incredible options to choose from, and we’re confident that you’ll discover the right one for your needs.


Are you tired of getting a dry and flavorless turkey, even after using rubs and butter? While a rub can add surface flavor, it can’t penetrate deep enough into the meat. This is where an injection marinade comes in handy. It will help keep the meat moist and flavorful and produce a tender turkey.

What is a turkey injection marinade?

A turkey injection marinade is a thin, flavorful liquid injected into thawed, raw turkey meat with a food-grade injector. These marinades provide additional flavor and keep the bird moist during cooking. Injection marinades can range in complexity from 1-2 ingredients or more involved with 5 or more ingredients. Keep these marinades thin and free of bulky ingredients like herbs that might clog up the injector.

Please note that if you plan to brine your turkey, reduce or omit the amount of salt in you injection marinade.

How to inject a turkey marinade

Inject the marinade into large meat sections like the breasts and thighs. Turkey breast is quite dense and will benefit from an injection marinade.

  • Draw the marinade mixture into the syringe and release a little air.
  • Penetrate the meat with the injector, about 1 1/2-2″ deep.
  • Inject small amounts of the marinade every 2″ across the breast and thigh region.  
  • There will be some overflow. Mop the marinade away with a paper towel.
  • If you plan to brine your turkey, reduce the salt content in the turkey injection recipe by half or completely. 
  • Cook your turkey as directed. Use our Smoked Turkey recipe guide and Smoked Turkey Cheat Sheet for best results.

The recipes below are some of our favorite turkey injection marinades! Use these injections whether roasting, rotisserie cooking, deep frying, or cooking your turkey on a pellet grill.

1) Honey and White Wine Turkey Injection Marinade

Honey and White Wine Turkey Injection Marinade

This injection marinade recipe is perfect for a smoked Thanksgiving turkey. The best part is that it can be used as an injection marinade and a baste, so consider making a double batch. In this injection, you will find a hint of white pepper and cinnamon for a little heat and holiday flavor. Use a rub that compliments these flavors for the best turkey you’ve ever had! Try the Honey and White Wine Turkey Injection Marinade

2) Garlic Butter Turkey Injection Marinade

Garlic Butter Turkey Injection

This garlic butter injection marinade will add the most delicious flavor to your grilled, smoked, or baked turkey. It’s easy to prepare and a reader favorite. This recipe starts with chicken broth, but you can substitute turkey broth if you have that on hand. You’ll learn quickly why this is on the list of our best turkey injection marinade recipes! Try the Garlic Butter Turkey Injection Marinade

3) Creole Butter Turkey Injection

syringe in flavorful mixture

Infuse your turkey with fantastic flavor by using this homemade Creole Butter Turkey Injection. The melted butter, savory spices, and that little hint of sweetness and heat is a surefire way to make the most of your holiday (and special occasion) turkey. Get the recipe for Creole Butter Turkey Injection

4) Garlic-Lemon Turkey Injection Marinade

Garlic-Lemon Turkey Marinade Injection

Filled with the goodness of fresh lemon juice and garlic, this injection marinade will add moisture and bring out the best in your grilled, smoked, or baked turkey. This marinade pairs well with an herb rub. Try the Garlic-Lemon Turkey Injection Marinade

5) Beer and Butter Turkey Injection Recipe

This simple turkey injection marinade will add loads of extra flavor to your holiday turkey. Whether grilling, smoking or baking your turkey, this injection marinade will help keep the bird moist and delicious as it cooks. Use this beer and butter mixture on poultry like whole chicken and game hens. Try the Beer and Butter Turkey Injection Recipe

Meat Injectors

You can’t use our turkey injection marinade recipes if you don’t have an injector. It is merely a syringe, often available at a decent price. However, you will need a good one. Below I have listed three models that are different in design. If you are doing a lot of injecting, then you want something with a pump-action, versus the regular syringe style. When buying a meat injector, look for something easy to use, that fits comfortably in your hand, and can handle the volume you need.

Ofargo Marinade Injector

Ofargo Marinade Injector

The Ofargo Marinade Injector is a classic-style syringe. The marinade is sucked up through the needle and then pushed back into the meat. The needle on this model is large enough that it shouldn’t clog. Still, make sure that your marinade is near water-thin. It is an inexpensive unit that you can purchase for around $10. It is dishwasher safe and durable enough to last for several years. The volume of this injector is small, but it will handle most jobs for a single-family.

Oklahoma Joes Trigger Marinade Injector

Oklahoma Joe’s Trigger Meat Injector

The Oklahoma Joe’s Trigger Meat Injector is more of a marinade pump than a syringe. Dip the hose end into a container with your marinade, and the trigger mechanism pumps the solution into the meat on both strokes. This will make for faster injecting and is excellent for those that are doing more than a single, small roast. At around $30, you pay a little more, but it can handle a lot more injecting. It will save your hands if you have a lot to do.

Chop's Power Injection System

Chop’s Power Injection System

Do you need to inject a lot of meat? Then this is the system you need. The tank holds a gallon of injection solution. Pump up the pressure and start injecting. It is the system used by caterers and BBQ competition cooks. Easy on the hands, it will allow you to inject at lightning speed. Of course, it costs around $160, so this is really for those who make money on barbecue or do lots of cooking.

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