Turkey Cheat Sheet
Bookmark this page: It's everything you need to know about the big bird.
- Plan on 1 to 1 1/2 pounds turkey per person.
- Buy a fresh or frozen bird: Choose from self-basting, natural, free-range, kosher or organic.
- Set an unwrapped frozen turkey on a rimmed baking sheet and thaw in the fridge; allow 24 hours per 5 pounds.
- To thaw the same day, submerge the wrapped bird in a cooler of cold water for 30 minutes per pound, changing the water every 30 minutes.
- Use 3/4 cup kosher salt for every gallon of water needed to cover the bird. Refrigerate the turkey in the brine for at least 8 hours.
- Flavor the brine with 1 to 2 cups juice, beer or spirits, if desired. You can also add herbs and spices.
- Don't brine kosher or self-basting turkeys.
- If you brined your turkey, rinse it inside and out with cold water. Remove the giblets and neck.
- Set the bird breast-side up on a rack in a roasting pan and pat the skin dry with paper towels. For extra-crisp skin, refrigerate the turkey, uncovered, overnight.
- Tie the legs together with twine, tuck in the wings and let the turkey stand for 30 minutes atroom temperature before roasting.
- Plan on about 20 minutes per pound. Tent with foil if the skin gets too brown.
- Check for doneness with a meat thermometer: The thigh meat and stuffing (if used) should register 165 degrees F.
- Let rest for 30 minutes before carving.
- Slice through the skin between the leg and body on one side; pull the leg away from the body, then cut through the joint to remove the leg.
- Separate the drumstick from the thigh: Locate the joint in the middle of the leg and cut through it.
- Working on the same side, pull the wing away from the body and cut through the joint to remove. Remove the leg and wing on the other side.
- Remove each side of breast meat by slicing downward along the breastbone, following the curve of the ribs.
- Place each breast on the board skin-side up and slice against the grain.
Photographs by Anita Calero (top); Steve Giralt (5 bottom)
Follow these tips to make your food storage more freezer-friendly.
Meet the team of culinary pros behind the recipes in Food Network Magazine.
Moths in your flour? Beetles in your wheat berries? Don't panic. Here's the lowdown on kitchen critters – and how to make them buzz off.
Your kitchen sponge has a dirty secret: It may be one of the filthiest spots in your home. Here are two ways to clean it.
Thanksgiving is the time of year that gets many people into the kitchen. As they plan their turkey day meals, viewers have reached out to us with the turkey day questions weighing on their minds. Here are some commonly asked questions as answered by The Kitchen!
These sneaky tactics help supermarkets have consumers do their bidding.
A few simple rules are the key to creating a rich, satisfying slow-cooked meal. Follow these tips for easy, flavorful recipes all year long.
With hundreds of cheeses now available at the grocery store and in cheese shops, buying cheese can be downright intimidating. But rather than approaching the cheese counter with dread, think of buying cheese as a fun adventure.
Find 1000s of Food Network's best recipes from top chefs, shows and experts. And watch videos demonstrating recipe prep and cooking techniques.
Master the art of cheesecakes with some simple pointers