Turkey Knuckles Recipe: A Delicious and Flavorful Dish for Thanksgiving


As Thanksgiving approaches, it’s time to start thinking about the star of the show: the turkey. While the turkey breast and legs often steal the spotlight, let’s not forget about the underrated and flavorsome turkey knuckles. In this article, we’ll explore a mouthwatering turkey knuckles recipe that will leave your guests wanting more. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a novice in the kitchen, this dish is sure to impress.

The Greatness of Turkey Knuckles

Turkey knuckles, also known as turkey drumsticks, offer a unique and delectable taste that is often overlooked. They are the lower part of the turkey leg, rich in flavor and tenderness. Turkey knuckles are perfect for slow cooking, allowing the meat to become incredibly moist and flavorful. This recipe will guide you through the process of preparing and cooking turkey knuckles to perfection.

The Ingredients You’ll Need

To make this delicious turkey knuckles recipe, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 4 turkey knuckles
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Preparing the Turkey Knuckles

Start by preheating your oven to 325°F (165°C). Rinse the turkey knuckles under cold water and pat them dry with paper towels. Season the knuckles with salt and pepper, ensuring they are evenly coated. Set aside.

Step 2: Searing the Turkey Knuckles

In a large oven-safe pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Carefully add the turkey knuckles to the pot and sear them on all sides until golden brown. This will help seal in the juices and enhance the flavor.

Step 3: Adding the Aromatics

Once the turkey knuckles are seared, remove them from the pot and set them aside. In the same pot, add the chopped onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Sauté the vegetables until they begin to soften and develop a rich aroma.

Step 4: Deglazing the Pot

Pour in the red wine and chicken broth, scraping the bottom of the pot to release any browned bits. This process, known as deglazing, adds depth and complexity to the sauce.

Step 5: Slow Cooking the Turkey Knuckles

Return the turkey knuckles to the pot and add the rosemary sprigs. Cover the pot with a lid and transfer it to the preheated oven. Allow the knuckles to slow-cook for approximately 2-3 hours, or until the meat is tender and falls off the bone.

Step 6: Serving and Enjoying

Once the turkey knuckles are cooked to perfection, remove them from the pot and let them rest for a few minutes. Serve them alongside your favorite side dishes, such as mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables. Spoon the flavorful sauce from the pot over the turkey knuckles for added juiciness and taste.

Key Takeaways

  • Turkey knuckles are a flavorful and tender part of the turkey leg that is often overlooked.
  • Slow cooking the turkey knuckles enhances their natural flavor and results in moist and juicy meat.
  • Season the knuckles with salt and pepper before searing them to add depth to the flavor.
  • Deglaze the pot with red wine and chicken broth to create a rich and flavorful sauce.
  • Pair the turkey knuckles with your favorite side dishes and spoon the sauce over them for added taste.


1. Can I use turkey knuckles instead of drumsticks in other recipes?

Absolutely! Turkey knuckles can be used interchangeably with drumsticks in various recipes. They can be grilled, roasted, or even used in stews and soups.

2. Can I use white wine instead of red wine?

While red wine adds richness and depth to the sauce, you can substitute it with white wine for a lighter flavor. Choose a dry white wine that complements the dish well.

3. How do I know when the turkey knuckles are cooked?

The meat should be tender and easily fall off the bone when the turkey knuckles are fully cooked. Use a fork or tongs to test if the meat is tender and separates easily.

Now that you have the perfect recipe for turkey knuckles, it’s time to impress your Thanksgiving guests with this flavorful and unique dish. Enjoy the tender meat, rich aromas, and hearty flavors that will make this Thanksgiving one to remember.


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