How to Thaw a Turkey

How to Thaw a Turkey - Defrosted turkey in panThanksgiving is almost upon us and many people will be buying a frozen turkey to cook and serve on Thanksgiving Day. If you plan on buying a frozen turkey, you’ll need to defrost it in the refrigerator and allow 24 hours for every four to five pounds.

Be sure to place the unwrapped turkey in a pan (breast side up) to contain any dripping from the defrost process. Place the pan on the lowest shelf of the refrigerator which is the coldest place in your fridge where all meats should be stored.

You can even see if your refrigerator veggie or crisper drawer can contain your turkey. Depending on your refrigerator’s size and the size of your turkey, it could work. Some people even use this drawer to brine their turkey.

Check your vegetable drawer for any cracks and line it with a plastic bag in order to catch any drippings from the defrost process. If you refrigerator drawer is cracked or missing, you can purchase a replacement one using your refrigerator’s model number to find the correct part.

Once your turkey has finished thawing, it can be kept in the refrigerator for one or two days before roasting.

You can also thaw the turkey under cold running water at 40F or lower. You’ll need to allow approximately 30 minutes per pound. Check out this online calculator from Butterball to determine how long it will take to defrost your frozen turkey according to your chosen method.

Some extra tips from the Toledo Blade and Chef Jim Rhegness:

On the day before cooking, uncover the turkey and leave it in the refrigerator overnight to dry out the skin; this will make it extra crisp once cooked.

Do not put the turkey into the microwave; Mr. Rhegness succinctly says that this is “not a good idea.”

Read more: Welcome to Turkey 101:






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