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Deep Frying a Turkey 101

There are many methods for cooking a turkey. You can bake it, you can brine it, you can put it in a paper bag. My favorite way is to deep fry.

I know what you are all thinking. That woman is going to set her house on fire! I'm pretty sure if i'm going to set the house on fire, its not going to be from a deep fried turkey. A spider is a more likely conclusion.

Safety First. With anything you do with fire, you should make safety your first priority. We keep the hose ready and the fryer away from anything flammable (Including the house!).

You also want to make sure that you are protected. If the oil does happen to splash, you don't want to be wearing shorts and flip flops. Not that you would in thirty degree weather, but I've seen some strange things in my life. Long pants and shoes that cover your toes are a great idea. Also long sleeves and gloves to protect your hands and arms. You can never be too prepared.

Preparing the bird. We always take the turkey out of the freezer three days before we need to cook it to give it plenty of time to thaw. A good rule of thumb to go by is 24 for every five pounds of turkey to thaw in the fridge. You need to make sure all the ice is gone from the bird because that can potentially make the oil spatter when you put the turkey in the pot.

Dress the bird. Nobody wants to go to dinner undressed, not even your turkey. Give it a good rub down before you fry it with some seasoning. Try this recipe, its what we use.


Frying the bird. What ever you do, don't overfill your oil. That's where people get into trouble. When you put the turkey into the pot the oil level is going to raise and if you have too much, its going to overflow and catch on fire when  it hits the flame. I don't want you to be "that guy" who burned down their house on Thanksgiving.

When the oil in the pot is 350 degree, slowly lower the bird into the pot. NEVER LEAVE THE BIRD UNATTENDED.

The amount of time you fry your turkey depends on how many pounds it is. A good rule to follow is three minutes for every pound. When you put your thermometer into the center of your cooked turkey it should read 165 degrees. At that time turn off the heat. If you don't and you take the turkey out of the pot with all the oil dripping from it, you could start a fire. Again, don't be "That Guy," be smart.

Turkey Time. It should only take you about an hour to fry your turkey, give or take a few minutes due to its size. Pat the bird down with a dry rag to remove any extra oil that has clung to the outside and let the bird sit until it is cool enough to carve.

This will be the best turkey you will ever have.

Thanks to my husband last year for letting me take these ridiculous pictures of him while he man handled my turkey. You are the best!


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