The Deen Bros. Lighter Orange-Apricot Turkey

  • Pin It
  • print
  • email to a friend
By Bobby and Jamie Deen

Lighter Orange-Apricot Turkey

279 Fewer Calories
28 g Less Fat

1 (12-pound) turkey
2 navel oranges
3/4 cup no-sugar added canned apricots, drained and coarsely chopped, 1/2 cup liquid reserved
1 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
3 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup dry Marsala wine or dry sherry
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Spray a large roasting pan and rack with cooking spray. Remove the neck and giblets from the body and neck cavities of the turkey and discard. Rinse the turkey inside and out and pat dry with paper towels. 

Grate the zest from each orange into a small bowl. Add the apricots, ginger, rosemary, 1 teaspoon sage, oil, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper until blended. Cut each orange into quarters and place into the cavity of the turkey. With your fingers, carefully lift the skin from the turkey and spread the apricot mixture evenly under the skin.  Tie the turkey legs together with kitchen twine. Place the turkey, skin-side up, on the rack in the pan. Pour 3/4 cup of broth and the reserved 1/2 cup apricot liquid into the bottom of the pan; roast the turkey for 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Cover the turkey loosely with foil to prevent the skin from burning and roast, basting occasionally, until an instant-read thermometer inserted between the leg and the thigh (without touching the bone) registers 165°F, about 2 hours, 35 minutes. Transfer the turkey to a cutting board; let stand 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make the gravy, scrape the drippings from the roasting pan into to a large glass measure. Let stand 5 minutes; then skim off the fat and discard. Stir the remaining 3/4 cup of broth, wine, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt into the skimmed pan drippings until blended. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add the pan drippings mixture into the flour mixture and cook, whisking constantly, until the gravy bubbles and begins to thicken slightly, 3 – 4 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in the remaining 2 teaspoons of sage.

Carve the turkey and serve with the gravy. Remove the skin before eating.

Per Serving: (3 ounces total white and skinless dark meat with about 2 tablespoons gravy) 187 Cal; 28 g Protein; 4 g Tot Fat; 2 g Sat Fat; 1 g Mono Fat; 7 g Carb; 1 g Fiber; 4 g Sugar; 28 mg Calcium; 2 mg Iron; 308 mg Sodium; 75 mg Cholesterol

Serves: 12
Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 min
Difficulty:  Easy

Original recipe courtesy Paula Deen:  Orange-Apricot Turkey
Lightened Up recipe courtesy of The Deen Brothers and the Paula Deen Test Kitchen

Read More From Deen Bros.

Read More From Deen Bros Take it Lighter.

Read More From Holidays and Entertaining.

Read More From Thanksgiving.

You May Also Like These Blogs:

You May Also Like These Recipes:

  • Cheesiest Fried Chicken Empanadas with Chili Con Queso Dip Cheesiest Fried Chicken Empanadas with Chili Con Queso Dip
    View Now
  • Creamy Pumpkin Soup Creamy Pumpkin Soup
    View Now
  • Cajun Seafood Balls Cajun Seafood Balls
    View Now
  • Lady and Son’s Lemonade Lady and Son’s Lemonade
    View Now

Leave a Comment

Reader Comments:


Thank you Deen family for the great turkey recipe. Oxox

By Mary Fanning on November 22, 2013


I really miss PAULA DEEN Especially when it's the holiday season.i definitely have my wild turkey on board plenty of butter,sugar,flour,eggs and spices.she is a super hero

By Pamela on November 22, 2013


I mss pauladeen cook station love have her back soon I miss recipe she was anice lady.

By on November 18, 2013

Paula Deen
Paula Deen
The Lady's Blog
The Queen of Southern Cuisine muses about her recipes, life and family. See Posts

Brooke Deen
Brooke Deen
Deen Mother
Advice on raising two boys (three counting Jamie). See Posts

Brandon Branch
Brandon Branch
Southern Style
Decorating Inspiration from Paula's Design Director. See Posts

Julia Sayers
Julia Sayers
Hot off the Press
Step behind the pages and let the Associate Editor of Cooking with Paula Deen fill you in on what goes into creating every issue. See Posts

Lisa Scarbrough
Lisa Scarbrough
Thrift Store Mommy
Mom on a dime advice from Paula's Digital Properties Manager. See Posts

Andrea Goto
Andrea Goto
Mom 2.0
Tips from a real-world mom with comedic tendencies. See Posts

Martha Lee
Martha Lee
Earth Mother
Practical, earth-conscious ways to live and parent in the 21st century. See Posts

Susan Greene a.k.a BUBBLES
Susan Greene a.k.a BUBBLES
Bubbles' Corner
Ideas and advice from a 21st Century young at heart Grandmother. See Posts

Cindy Edwards
Cindy Edwards
Southern Proper
Etiquette advice from a true Southern belle. See Posts


Paula, I love watching you and your family. I miss seeing your show, I watched you everyday. My son lives in Charleston S.C. He took me to the Lady & Sons to eat. Oh my goodness! People are always telling me that I look just like the cooking lady Paula Deen. I always tell them that you are my hero. May God Bless You Mary Ann
Mary Ann Tharp in A Summer of Burgers on August 15, 2014 at 10:48 pm

Add a few spoonfuls of parmesan cheese to the flour and cornmeal breading and it kicks the tomatoes up another notch. Bev
in Crispy Fried Green Tomatoes on August 15, 2014 at 10:33 am

I just bought Paula's Peach Salad Dressing and wondered if anyone has a good recipe that they use it in?
Melissa in Taste Testing 101 on August 13, 2014 at 8:36 am

Congrats Bobby. Loved the family picture miss you Paula on TV will be watching online. Jack is getting big. Looks like his mom but Matt aka moose has your face. Your eyes cheeks hair even falls to his face like yours except to the left. Good luck on your next venture. You give us other 60+ yr women strength to move on. Keep up the good work.
Carol Bryant in Love at Last on August 11, 2014 at 6:12 pm