Braised Turkey Thighs with Cider, Bacon and Potatoes

The use of hard cider gives this autumnal turkey dish an astounding flavor worthy of being served at other times than Thanksgiving. A non‐traditional method of cooking turkey, this recipe results in moist, succulent meat, never dry, with rich component flavors from the bacon and other ingredients. An absolute gem and must try recipe.


  • 4 slices of thick‐cut bacon, cut into 1/2‐inch pieces
  • 4 turkey thighs
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 1/2 Cup hard apple cider
  • 1 Cup chicken broth
  • 1 pound small Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped into quarters


  1. Preheat 1. the oven to 300 degrees F.
  2. Wash and thoroughly dry the turkey thighs. Season them on all sides with salt and pepper and set the thighs aside.
  3. Add the bacon to a large Dutch oven and heat over medium heat. Cook the bacon, stirring occasionally, until it begins to crisp, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set it aside.
  4. Increase the heat to medium‐high. Add the turkey thighs to the Dutch oven skin‐side down. Do not crowd the turkey thighs; if necessary cook them in two batches. Cook the turkey until it is well‐browned on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Remove the turkey legs to a plate and discard all but 1 tbsp of oil from the Dutch oven.
  5. Add the carrot, celery, and onion to the dutch oven. Cook the vegetables, stirring occasionally, until they begin to brown, about 5 minutes.
  6. Add the thyme and cider to the pan. Bring the cider to a boil and stir well to break up any brown bits at the bottom of the pan. Boil the cider until it is reduced by half, about 2 minutes.
  7. Stir in the chicken stock. Bring the stock to a boil, then reduce the heat to a slow simmer. Add the potatoes. Sprinkle the reserved bacon over the potatoes.
  8. Add the turkey thighs to the Dutch oven, skin‐side down. Cover the pan and place it in the oven. Cook for 30 minutes, then flip the turkey thighs. Replace the cover and continue cooking until the turkey is tender, another 30 to 40 minutes.
  9. Place each turkey thigh in a bowl along with some potatoes. Spoon off as much fat from the top of the liquid as you can. Taste the braising liquid for salt and pepper and pour some of it over each serving of turkey and potatoes.

Quick notes

Braising turkey thighs provides an affordable, substantial meal that is easy to prepare and quite delicious. The slow cooking makes the meat moist, while affording the home cook the luxury of time to spend on other pursuits.

Preparation time: 30 minute(s)

Cooking time: 120 +/-

Diet (other): High protein

Number of servings (yield): 4 to 6

Meal type: dinner

Culinary tradition: USA (Traditional)

My rating 5 stars: ★★★★★ 1 review(s)


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