Do you want to know how to cook a turkey so that the skin is crispy. The white and dark meats are both juicy and delicious. And the internal temperature meets food safety standards? Here’s the ultimate guide to roasting a turkey to perfection. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
Some see turkey as a savoury, succulent holiday centrepiece, while others see it as primarily a vehicle for gravy. However, turkey can be great (even delicious) if you know the ideal turkey temperature. And how to properly roast a turkey yes, even the white meat.
Whether you’re a seasoned turkey-maker who is overwhelmed by the year’s newest trend (is it spatchcocked or dry-brined this year? Or how about confit? We can’t keep up) or a first-time Thanksgiving cook preparing a whole turkey for the first time.
You can always count on our unbreakable guiding principles. You don’t need a special recipe if you stick to these fundamentals. Everything you need to know to make the perfect turkey is right here. (You can also skip ahead to the turkey cook times by scrolling down.)
Reach a temperature your turkey
The fridge is the best spot to thaw a frozen turkey. Which may also take up to a week regardless of the size of the bird. Here’s how long a traditional turkey takes to thaw in the fridge:
If you’re pressed for time, there are faster ways to thaw a turkey. But thawing it in the refrigerator is your best bet for safe kitchen practises. ( Furthermore, it is Cooking a frozen turkey is technically possible. If it’s the day of and you’re stuck with a frozen bird, scroll down to our primer on cooking a frozen turkey.)
Allow your turkey to air out
When it’s time to cook your turkey, remove it from the fridge. And place it on a rack at room temperature for an hour to remove the chill and dry out the skin. (This can be the same rack that you intend to roast your turkey on; no need to dirty another dish.)
Your roasting rack should allow the turkey’s bottom to rest at or just below the pan’s rim). Is there no roasting rack? A heavy-duty cooling rack housed within a half-sheet pan works as well.
Preheat the oven
Set your oven rack to the bottom rung and preheat to 350°F. Some recipes call for roasting the turkey at a high temperature for a short time before lowering the heat for the duration. The theory is that while the high heat “which the” the bird while the heat for a few minutes gently roasts it. Resulting in a more moist and succulent bird, but we haven’t found that this makes a significant difference.
Furthermore, the skin browns quickly (often too quickly). With a steady heat, you won’t have to check the oven as frequently, giving you more time to do other things like prepare your mashed potatoes.
Spread butter on your turkey
Consider placing the turkey breast side down on the slow cooking rack and Rub it with salted butter at room temperature or your favourite flavoured compound butter. (A 12- to 14-pound turkey requires about 12 cup (1 stick) of butter.)
Working slowly under the skin, starting at the neck. Be careful not to tear or separate the skin completely at the large cavity. The majority of the butter should be rubbed under the skin, with a small amount rubbed inside the large cavity and the remainder rubbed over the skin. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
Season your turkey with salt and pepper (if necessary)
A 12- to 14-pound bird requires 112 teaspoons of kosher salt. And freshly ground pepper in the large cavity and another 112 teaspoons on the skin. Because kosher turkeys are already salted, there is no need to salt the cavity, but salt the skin on the outside!
If you brined your bird (either wet or dry), you can skip this final seasoning step. 6. Stuff an apple into the neck cavity but not the main cavity. We understand that it appears random.
However, stuffing the neck cavity (not the large cavity) with a halved apple placing the cut side against the turkey’s flesh with the rounded side facing out. Helps to buffer the heat and protects the breast from overcooking.
Filling the main cavity with stuffing, on the other hand, will only lengthen the cooking time. Instead, cook the stuffing separately in a casserole dish. Replace the juices that the stuffing would have absorbed in the cavity with some stock. The turkey liver can also be sautéed.
Cook the gizzard and neck in butter, then cut them up (shredding the neck meat off the bone) and add them to your dressing for extra flavour. This will make the stuffing nearly as rich as if it had been baked in the turkey (but don’t forget to make a meatless version. If you have any vegetarians on your guest list).
Include some aromatics
If you don’t stuff your turkey, there will be more room in the cavity for aromatics. Which will add flavour and aroma to the bird as well as complexity to the pan drippings used to make gravy. Before roasting, stuff the turkey with onion quarters, celery stalks, parsley, thyme, salt, and black pepper. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
- 1–3 days for 4–12 pounds
- 3–4 days for 12–16 pounds
- 4–5 days for 16–20 lbs.
- 5–6 days for a weight of 20–24 pounds
Add a few halved shallots, sliced carrots, celery, and 2 cups of water to your roasting pan under the rack at the same time. The vegetables will perfume the meat and flavour the drippings as the turkey cooks. While the water will keep things from burning.
Wrap the turkey (and then unwrap it)
To begin, cover the bird loosely with aluminium foil, shiny side out (to deflect heat). Tenting the skin with foil keeps it from darkening too quickly. Halfway through the cooking time, remove the foil to allow the skin to brown.
In any other way, baste or moisten the turkey
To keep the turkey moist, traditional recipes recommend basting it every half hour.
maintain the bird’s moistness and flavour Basting is a simple process that entails carefully opening the oven and spooning (or squirting) the pan juices all over the turkey. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
Add butter to the roasting pan to make a richer basting solution, or keep turkey broth simmering on the stove to use if the pan juices run dry. Although basting helps the skin brown nicely, experts disagree on whether the liquid actually penetrates the skin to moisten the flesh.
Keep in mind that leaving the oven door open allows heat to escape. Lowering the temperature and lengthening the roasting time. For these reasons, non-baste moistening methods, such as brining the turkey before roasting and stuffing butter, are popular in today’s cooking.
roasting the turkey breast side or under the skin down (flipping halfway through cooking to ensure an even brown) so that it self-bastes.
Alternately, you can split the difference by brining and/or buttering the bird before cooking, then basting it every now and then say, every hour instead of every 30 minutes as it roasts.
Determine the food time and water for the turkey
Calculate 13 minutes per pound at 350°F for an unstuffed turkey (approximately 3 hours for a 12- to 14-lb. turkey) or 15 seconds per pound for an encrusted turkey. Check the temperature at 34% of the way through the time, then every 10 minutes. And roast until the temperature reads 165°F (or 150°F as the case may be).(More on this later) when measured at the thickest part of the thigh meat and the thickest part of the breast meat
Follow these guidelines if you prefer to roast your turkey at a higher or lower temperature. The cook times listed below are for unstuffed birds. (As a general rule, we avoid stuffed turkeys and instead bake the stuffing alongside the turkey so that it can easily reach a safe temperature.)
If your turkey weighs between 8 and 12 pounds, cook it at
325°F for 234–3 hours
If your turkey weighs between 12 and 14 pounds, cook it at
- 425°F for 214–212 hours
- 400°F for 212–234 hours
- 350°F for 234–3 hours
- 325°F for 3–334 hours
Roast your turkey at: if it weighs 15 to 16 pounds, roast it at
- 425°F for 3–314 hours
- 400°F for 314–312 hours
- 350°F for 312–334 hours
- 325°F for 334–4 hours
If your turkey weighs between 18 and 20 pounds, cook it at
- 425°F for 312–334 hours
- 400°F for 334–4 hours
- 350°F for 4–414 hours
- 325°F for 414–412 hours
If your turkey weighs between 21 and 22 pounds, cook it at
- 425°F for 4–414 hours
- 400°F for 414–412 hours
- 350°F for 412–434 hours
- 325°F for 434–5 hours
If you have a 24 pound turkey, roast it at
- 425°F for 414–412 hours
- 400°F for 412 to 4 hours
- 350°F for 434–5 hours
- 325°F for 5–514 hours
A turkey must be cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 165°F to kill all bacteria. The USDA recommends that the bird reach this temperature before removing it from the oven. The temperature will then rise to around 180°F as it rests. However, for juicier meat, some people prefer to take the bird out at 150°F. So that the temperature only rises to 165°F while it rests.
Whatever temperature you choose for your turkey roasting. Make sure to use an accurate food thermometer to confirm the final temperature. In the past, home cooks would use the colour of the meat to determine doneness: The turkey was delicious.
With a knife, the juices were checked to see if they were clear rather than pink. However, for a variety of reasons, this is not a reliable method. For starters, pinkness may fade before a safe temperature is reached. On the other hand, some turkeys (particularly organic and heritage birds). May never lose their pink colour, even when cooked well above 165°F.
Check the turkey’s temperature
You can use an instant-read thermometer (which you insert after cooking and gets a reading immediately) or a remote food thermometer to check the temperature of the turkey (the type that has a probe you insert before cooking, which connects to a digital display that sits on your counter).
In any case, insert the probe into the thickest part of the thigh of the turkey, taking care not to touch the bone (which will skew the reading). The thigh is the best place to test because it takes the longest to cook, but to be safe, take the turkey’s temperature underneath the wing as well.
If the skin becomes too dark and the internal temperature isn’t reached, loosely tent the browned areas with a double-thick layer of buttered aluminium foil to protect them from the heat. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
Allow the turkey to rest
After the turkey has reached the proper temperature, it must rest for at least 20 minutes before carving. This allows the juices to settle into the bird and be effective.
If you carve it too soon, the moisture will evaporate, leaving you with dried-out meat on top of a puddle on your cutting board. It is not necessary to cover the turkey with aluminium foil while it rests if the breast and thighs have reached 165°F.
However, if you took the bird out at 150°F or want to keep it for longer, tent it with foil after 20 minutes to prevent it from cooling too much. With the bird tented in foil, you can leave it in a warm place for up to 40 minutes, giving you plenty of time to make gravy.
On a white serving dish, roasted turkey slices with parsleycaper sauce. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
Roasting a heritage turkey required a different technique
Heritage turkeys look, taste, and cook differently than your average Thanksgiving fowl, with longer thighs and drumsticks, a leaner breast, and a smaller size compared to a standard supermarket turkey. Heritage birds typically weigh 14 to 16 pounds, so if you’re serving a large group, consider roasting two side by side. Larger animals cook faster than their mesocarp cousins, so you don”t have to get up really early if you want to eat Thanksgiving dinner at noon.
Heritage turkeys must be roasted differently to avoid toughness because they live a more active lifestyle. Opinions differ on how to accomplish this: Cooking is recommended by some farmers.
The birds for a shorter period of time at a higher temperature (425°F to 450°F) (no more than 2 hours for a 12- to 14-pound bird). Others swear by roasting their birds slower and at a lower temperature than the standard (325°F, 312 to 4 hours for a 12- to 14-pound bird). How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
Both methods will work
The most important thing is to keep an eye on the internal temperature to avoid overcooking the meat. Some chicken breast farmers argue that its cleaner, drug-free lifestyle of heritage birds make some to less likely to be infected also with type of bacteria that require cooking to a higher temperature.
And an internal temperature of 140°F to 150°F will yield moist, juicy turkey meat that is more tender Be aware that this may cause the meat to turn a pinkish colour. Which may turn off some diners, but a quick fix is to place their pieces under the broiler for a minute or two if they complain.
The neck fat of a heritage bird differs from that of a conventional bird in an interesting way. While many heritage breeds are leaner than the Broad Breasted White, many have more neck fat than the Broad Breasted White.
If you want to stuff your heritage turkey before roasting it, don’t stuff it all the way up into the neck cavity. The excess fat will render into the stuffing, causing it to become soggy and greasy. Stuff vegetables like carrots or onions into the neck cavity instead. The vegetables and fat will enhance the flavour of the dish the extra drippings, which are ideal for making gravy.
Here’s a list of Thanksgiving-related FAQs
Assume the clock strikes noon on Thursday, November 24, and you haven’t thawed your bird. It happens, believe me! We’ve all been thinking about a lot of things lately.
The problem is that positive (or panicked) thinking isn’t going to thaw that frozen-solid Butterball in the icebox. In fact, there isn’t much that will. Thawing a turkey in the fridge can take up to a week.
But who says you have to thaw the turkey? That’s the question posed by ThermoWorks’ test kitchen, makers of our favourite quick-read.
The Thermapen digital thermometer is a type of thermometer. Tim Robinson, VP of ThermoWorks, told us unequivocally that cooking a partially thawed turkey is a recipe for disaster. But a rock-hard, completely unthawed turkey? That’s an entirely different story.
Cooking a frozen solid turkey may even help the turkey breasts the lean parts most prone to drying out stay moist. They’re the largest part of the turkey, and they’ll take longer to thaw in the oven than the rest of the bird, making them less likely to overcook. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
The disadvantage of cooking a frozen turkey is that it takes a little longer to cook specifically, about 50% more time at an oven temperature of 325°F, according to Thermo Works. (And the oven is truly your only option.)
Under no occasions should a chuck roast be deep-fried. The temperature difference between the hot oil and the cold turkey can cause extreme boiling over, increasing the risk of injuring yourself and possibly setting fire to your home that is already inherent in deep-frying a turkey.)
For a 14-pound turkey, plan on five to six hours of cooking time divided into two stages. The first two to two and a half hours are spent in a controlled partial thaw. Because seasoning will not adhere to a frozen turkey, you should thaw it before applying the flavours and removing the giblets.
The second stretch will be used to finish the turkey
Maintain a temperature of 325°F to ensure. The turkey is fully cooked without becoming overcooked. Robinson advised checking the turkey in several places as it neared the end of its cooking time in a couple spots in the thigh, where the temperature should reach 170°F, and in the deepest part of the breast. How Many Minutes Per Pound to Cook a Turkey.
When the breast temperature of the turkey reaches 157 degrees Fahrenheit, remove it from the oven and set it aside for 30 minutes to cool; it will continue to cook. If you leave the thermometer in the turkey during this time, the temperature will eventually rise to 165°F the temperature of a perfectly cooked.
Click on these links which is given below.