Healthy Tip – Do You Know How to Cook a Turkey?

Before cooking your turkey, it is highly recommended to make sure it is completely defrosted.

You can roast, smoke, or deep-fry your turkey. Below are simple instructions for roasting your Holiday Turkey.

Roasting is the simplest and least expensive way to prepare a turkey.

Roasting is the simplest and least expensive way to prepare a turkey.
Kimberly Baker, ©2018, Clemson Extension.

Roasting: Place a completely thawed turkey, breast up, on a roasting rack in a shallow pan, approximately 2½ inches deep. Insert an oven safe thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh being careful not to touch the bone. Rub the skin with oil or margarine to prevent drying during cooking. Season with salt and other spices of your choice. Place the prepared bird in a preheated 325 °F oven.

When the skin is light golden, shield the breast with a tent of aluminum foil to prevent overcooking the breast meat. The turkey is done when the meat thermometer in the thigh registers at least 165 °F. Juices should run clear.

When done, remove the bird from the oven and let it stand undisturbed for 20 minutes. This will allow the juices to set and result in a moister bird.

For additional information on cooking or defrosting a turkey go to Clemson’s Home & Garden Information Center.

If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at or 1-888-656-9988.

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