Can you brine a turkey that has 8% solutions?

Can you brine a turkey that has 8 solution in it? We’ve given you the reasons why you can’t and the situations in which you can. Hopefully it’ll help you.

Are you planning on cooking up a turkey for thanksgiving? Or just because you want to cook a turkey?

Brining might be one of the best ways to ensure that the turkey that you’re cooking stays soft, juicy and moist inside. So it’s a great tactic to make a perfect roasted turkey.

But many turkeys available in the store are already pre-brined. So the question arises, can you brine a turkey that has 8% solution? We hope that this article will answer your query.

Can You Brine A Turkey In 8% Solution?

The answer to this question is no. A turkey in 8% solution that’d be brined again would be way too salty for the average palate. Of course this would be the case if what you’re doing is dry brining the bird.

Generally speaking 8 percent means that for every one hundred parts solution in which the turkey was brined in,92 parts were water. And the remaining 8 parts were salt.

Can You Brine A Turkey In 8% Solution?

Generally speaking the concept of pre brined turkeys, especially in the higher concentrations of 8% and what it is so that you don’t have to brine it again later on.

It’d be like cooking a rotisserie chicken on a rotisserie again.

Well that as well as the nefarious intent(or reasonable based on your perspective) that some butchers might have in terms of artificially increasing the weight so that it would allow them to garner more profit. Of course we can’t really blame them since the birds that were already brined are in high demand and are of course correspondingly cheaper.

Is There Still A Way To Brine Pre Brined Turkey Again?

Well surprisingly enough the answer to this question is yes.

It would be an added hassle but there are circumstances in which you can implement this especially if you want to inject more flavor into your bird.

Not injected

Generally at higher concentrations such pre-existing brines should be removed. You should rinse off the brine solution in regular tap water. After that you can brine the bird again. In this brine it’s always a wise idea to add various herbs, spices and what not to your turkey.

Many decide to add things such as apple cider vinegar, different seasonings etc. to it. It’s similar to what a kosher deli would use in terms of seasonings for their turkey. It’s best to opt for such seasoning mixes.

Spice mixes might include things such as star anise, cloves, garlic powder etc. A proper recipe guide will function better but a few tips won’t hurt!

These will add added flavor to your bird and make it taste very good. Add thyme if possible too.

Some will also add sauces such as Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce etc.

However if the bird was brined in a solution that already had flavorings added to it that’s just not your basic seasoning then it may be hard to rinse out the existing brine in it. It’s best to buy a plain brined bird in case you want to customize your bird.

Solution was injected into the bird

It will be a bit harder to customize the bird if the bird was injected with the solution. It will be harder to wash off the existing brine in it.

It’s better not to use frozen turkeys for this reason. The frozen birds are generally injected with a sodium solution that helps them freeze faster. Rinsing in this case might not help.

Brining it further may be quite detrimental to the taste of the birds as the salt levels might make it inedible.

Self- basted or enhanced logos of the bird will be your cue as to whether you should attempt to re-brine an already pre brined bird.

Should I Dry Brine Or Wet Brine My Turkey?

Generally speaking there are two types of brining that goes on regarding turkeys. We’ve primarily talked about wet brining in our article since it deals with solutions and wet brines are a solution. Let’s take a small dive into both of them.

Dry Brine

Dry brining is basically putting a dry rub on the turkey. It’s still called brining because the rub is primarily based on salt.

A dry brine primarily makes sure that the moisture that’s naturally present within the turkey is locked within the bird. This also allows for the flavor to be a bit more present in the skin and the flavor will be more concentrated due to the fact that no water is being pumped into the turkey.

Wet Brine

In wet brining the turkey is generally brined by marinating it in a solution that contains salt and other spices, sauces etc. The solution seeps into the turkey and makes it more moist.

 But of course additional water does get into the turkey in the process that might cause the turkey to have a more diluted flavor. Wet brining may cause the turkey to gain up to 40% extra weight on top of its original weight.


It’s always better not to brine a turkey that has already been “pre basted” or “enhanced”. As we’ve already said that you’d be far better off doing this with a fresh bird.

Make sure that if you still opt for a bird with the 8 solution then you wash out the existing solution. Don’t use frozen birds for this as injected solutions are near impossible to remove for a homecooked.


Is It Ok To Brine A Frozen Turkey?

It’s always a good decision to brine a turkey that’s fresh and not frozen.

A frozen turkey has already been injected with a brine solution and is frozen. It’s going to take a lot of effort to rinse out the existing brine and to brine it yet again even if it is to customize.

Can You Brine An Enhanced Turkey?

An enhanced turkey doesn’t need to be brined generally.

Such a bird is generally already made to not require customization. However there are many that still dry brine enhanced turkeys such as your frozen butterballs.

How Do I Know If My Turkey Is Pre Brined?

Read the ingredients label.

Generally if you see ingredients apart from just turkey then there’s a high probability that the bird has been pre brined. A guarantee of this is any sodium compound being present in the turkey.

When Should I Brine My Turkey?

Ideally you should brine your turkey around two days before cooking it.

However if you’re in a relative rush then around 8 hours before you cook your bird should also suffice.

Do You Rinse Brine Off Turkey Before Cooking?

No you shouldn’t

The brine is what is carrying all the flavor in your turkey. If you wash it off then the flavor will wash out with it too.


Should you brine a turkey that has 8 solution? Well the answer to  that goes in two directions.

Namely you shouldn’t because that’d make the bird too salty.

But then again there is the option to do so if you want to customize, by washing the pre-existing solution off the bird. We hope that we were able to help.