The 5 Most Important Turkey Tips from a Butterball Talk-Line ExpertSkills
Including what to do if you forgot to thaw your turkey.
Nov 23, 2022
Truss Your Turkey Without Twine with Sohla El-Waylly’s Easy TrickSkills
Save some time by not having to pick up twine!
Nov 22, 2022
Exactly When to Take Your Turkey Out of the FreezerSkills
Three words: Thaw. The. Turkey.
Nov 21, 2022
How to Properly Check a Turkey’s Temperature for DonenessSkills
Here's how to take the temperature of your turkey and make sure that it's arrived at the safe internal temperature for eating.
Nov 20, 2022
For a Perfectly Roasted Turkey, Skip the Roasting PanSkills
Use this instead.
Nov 19, 2022
How Much Turkey per Person? Use This Rule of Thumb.Skills
Plus, how to make sure you have plenty of leftovers.
Nov 19, 2022
Ina Garten’s Ingenious Hack Will Keep Your Turkey Nice and Juicy, Even After You Slice ItSkills
Dry, cold turkey will be no longer be a problem!
Nov 18, 2022
Why Does Turkey Make You Sleepy? Skills
A sleep expert weighs in.
Nov 5, 2022
We Tried 8 Methods for Getting Crispy Turkey Skin and a Clear Winner EmergedSkills
It was super-juicy and delicious, too!
Nov 5, 2022
The 5 Biggest Mistakes to Avoid When Deep-Frying a TurkeySkills
Plus, what to do instead.
Nov 3, 2022
Alex Guarnaschelli’s Butter-Soaked Cheesecloth Hack Will Make Your Turkey the Star of ThanksgivingSkills
There won't be a dry turkey in sight with this hack.
Nov 12, 2021
How to Baste a Turkey or ChickenSkills
Basting is an easy way to add flavor and moisture — here's how to do it!
Nov 12, 2021
Here’s What to Do If Your Turkey Is Still Frozen on Thanksgiving Morning
Don't Panic!
Here's what you can do about it, whether you have a few hours to spare or absolutely no time at all.
Nov 26, 2020
Yes, You Should Still Roast a Whole Turkey This Year — Then Turn It into 9 Dinners to Stash in the Freezer
Power Hour Meal Prep
Think big this Thanksgiving, even if your holiday table is small. Your future self will thank you.
Nov 13, 2020
The Wrong Ways to Thaw a TurkeySkills
Spoiler: No, you cannot leave a turkey out to thaw overnight.
Nov 12, 2020
The Best Way to Get a Hot Turkey Out of the PanSkills
Here's a method that requires zero special equipment.
Nov 28, 2019
Here’s a Simple Trick for Trussing a TurkeySkills
This is our least complicated string theory.
Nov 24, 2019
*Never* Cook Stuffing Inside the Turkey: It’s DangerousSkills
There's a better, safer way to get turkey-flavored stuffing.
Nov 22, 2019
Why You Should Never Thaw a Turkey in Warm WaterSkills
The last thing you want after your holiday gathering is everyone getting sick.
Nov 12, 2019
José Andrés Fell for the Turkey-in-the-Microwave PrankSkills
“How long does it take to microwave a 25lb turkey?” Carlota Andrés messaged to the family WhatsApp. Her famous father, chef, and humanitarian José Andrés, responded, aghast, in a mixture of English and Spanish that encompasses a horror perhaps not able to be contained in just one language. In fact, the younger Andrés was simply enacting the same prank that other young adults around the country have been all week.
Nov 20, 2018
Here’s How to (Actually) Microwave a TurkeySkills
I first saw the viral “microwaving a turkey” meme on Instagram, where my friend had posted a screenshot of her hilarious conversation with her mom. (If you aren’t aware of the trend, people are texting their moms asking how long it would take to cook a 25-pound turkey in the microwave in hopes of getting a funny response, then posting a photo of the conversation on social media.
Nov 20, 2018
This Is the Secret to a Better Turkey-Based Meat SauceSkills
Because ground turkey is so low in fat, it’s not exactly a meat with a reputation for big flavor. But I’m here to change your mind because I recently used it to make some of the most delicious meat sauce I’ve had in ages. And it’s all thanks to a trick that is going to make you a true believer in turkey meat sauce once and for all. Wanna know my secret?
May 31, 2018
Don’t Forget to Do This If You’re Roasting Turkey in a Foil PanSkills
If you’re making your turkey in a foil pan this year for the ease of cleanup it promises, there’s one smart tip you need to make this cooking method not only easier on yourself but also just smarter overall. This tip falls under the “useful but obvious” category, but we figured if it’s something we find ourselves forgetting then you might too.
Nov 21, 2017
Start Brining Your Turkey TodaySkills
So, you’ve decided to brine your turkey this year. Great choice — you will not regret it one bit. This simple extra step means you are in for a juicy, succulent, full-flavored turkey. And now that we’re a couple days out from Thanksgiving, it is time to get started. Here is what you need to know. The Tuesday evening before Thanksgiving is a great time to start brining your turkey. As a rule of thumb, we always recommend brining the turkey for one to two days.
Nov 21, 2017
5 Easy Ways to Season Turkey with Stuff You (Probably) Already HaveSkills
As Thanksgiving draws near, perhaps the biggest question that looms is just how you’ll prepare your prized turkey. You could go completely no-frills and stick with nothing but salt and pepper, or you could embrace brining. But what about trying something new? This may sounds risky if you’ve had a tried-and-true method for countless Thanksgivings, but there’s not much risk at all if trying something new just involves any seasonings you already have in your kitchen.
Nov 18, 2017
Cheap, Disposable Gloves Make Carving Turkey a BreezeSkills
There’s one tool that chefs around the world use and most of us don’t keep in our kitchens, but we should. This inexpensive disposable product can be found in grocery stores, drug stores, and online — and once you’ve got it in the house, you’ll surely use it for everything from pumpkin carving to turkey carving. Can you guess what it is?
Nov 10, 2017
How To Carve a Turkey: The Simplest, Easiest MethodSkills
All you need is a sharp knife and a steady workstation, and we'll show you the rest.
Nov 9, 2017
The Art of the Free Thanksgiving TurkeySkills
For the first 31 years of my life, I thought turkeys were like toothbrushes, pens, and matches — just things you got for free. Dentists hand out toothbrushes like they’re candy (hehe!), hotels leave out pens for the taking, restaurants practically beg you to take matches on your way out the door, and turkeys, well, my mom had never paid a dime for any of our Thanksgiving turkeys.
Nov 6, 2017
Butterball Is Begging for a Turkey EmojiSkills
How many times do you think you’ll say the word “turkey” during the week of Thanksgiving? I usually say it twice: “When will the turkey be ready?” and “Why isn’t the turkey ready yet?” But the experts who man the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line say or type that particular word more than 5,000 times – and they’re ready to give their vocal cords and their texting fingers a break.
Oct 16, 2017
Is the Turkey Thawed Yet? A Short GuideSkills
Thawing a turkey is a critical first step in roasting your Thanksgiving turkey. You should allow a minimum of three days for a standard 12- to 15-pound bird to thaw. However, other factors, like the temperature of your fridge and your turkey’s location in that fridge, will affect how long it takes your turkey to actually thaw. Given those other factors, it can be weirdly difficult to tell whether, after all this time, your big bird is actually thawed all the way through.
Nov 22, 2016
The Turkey Game PlanSkills
Thanksgiving week is finally here, which means it’s time to get your turkey ready for the big day. Whether it’s your first time cooking a turkey or you’ve tackled it a few times before, this is the day-by-day plan that will set you up for success. From thawing a frozen turkey to roasting, carving, and beyond, this is what you need to know. Welcome to Thanksgiving week! Dinner isn’t for another few days, but now is the time to start prepping the turkey.
Nov 21, 2016
3 Ways to Serve Turkey at a Small Thanksgiving GatheringSkills
If your Thanksgiving is a small-scale celebration, cooking a whole turkey for just a few people feels like overkill. No need to skip the turkey — just rethink your cooking strategy. Here are three ways to serve turkey this Thanksgiving without cooking the whole bird. If the highlight of Thanksgiving dinner for you is thin slices of turkey topped with gravy, look no further than a traditional roast turkey breast.
Nov 18, 2016
Turkey Is Gross. But Turkey Stock Is from God.Skills
My friends, I am not a lover of the turkey, that mascot of a picture-perfect Thanksgiving. Like Norman Rockwell, I appreciate the propaganda effect of a gleaming bird on a platter; the trophy of the cook who has, by god, laid to rest Thanksgiving, her mother-in-law (and ghosts of grandmothers past) in one highly effective display of crackling burnished skin. But it’s all for show, like a military rally of puffer fish.
Nov 12, 2016
5 Mistakes to Avoid with Ground TurkeySkills
Ground turkey is a versatile ingredient that can be rolled into meatballs, shaped into burgers and meatloaf, and crumbled into sauces. And in the right form, it proves to be the lean, lighter alternative to ground beef. It has the potential to make for a flavorful meal, as long as it’s used correctly. Ground turkey can be notorious for its dry texture and bland flavor, but just like ground beef, ground turkey can be purchased with different ratios of meat to fat.
Mar 15, 2016
Why Didn’t My Roasting Turkey Smell? A Post-Thanksgiving Tell-AllSkills
I will be forever haunted by memories of Thanksgiving 2015. While so much of my Thanksgiving was just right — my grandmother’s china, a pecan pie from a hip bakery, carefully cooked Brussels sprouts and chestnuts — one major element was missing. My turkey didn’t smell! No, my guests were not greeted with the fragrance of perfect heritage turkey roasting with apples, onions, and sage.
Dec 2, 2015
5 Smart Ways to Make Your Turkey Cook FasterSkills
Cooking the turkey for Thanksgiving dinner is an important task. If you fall behind schedule on the big day, don’t panic (we’ve all been there) — here are five smart ways to help your turkey cook faster, so you can get it on the table in time. Skip cooking the stuffing in the bird. Not only can it pose food safety issues if not cooked properly, but stuffing cooked inside the turkey also slows down cooking time considerably, as it blocks the flow of heat.
Nov 24, 2015
3 Simple Steps for Crispy Skin on Your Turkey Every TimeSkills
PSA: Moisture is the enemy of crispy skin.
Nov 20, 2015
Your Gravy Cheat SheetSkills
While a recipe is a great route for making gravy, sometimes your pan drippings never turn out to be the perfect one-cup amount most recipes are based on. That’s why it’s particularly important to know how to make gravy without one. This ratio is a guide to get you started so you can scale your recipe up or down to fit the needs of your team.
Nov 19, 2015
What Can I Do with a Lot of Ground Turkey?Skills
Q: Despite your recent posts on how to shop at Costco, I got sucked into the bulk mayhem recently and bought eight pounds of ground turkey. I think I’ve cooked with ground turkey once. I stuck some in the freezer, but will need to use the rest soon. What do I do with all this ground turkey? Sent by Emily Editor: I think anyone that’s ever shopped at Costco has certainly been in your shoes at some point. I certainly have.
Nov 18, 2015
Your Turkey Buying Cheat SheetSkills
There are two schools of opinion when it comes to buying the Thanksgiving turkey: Find the biggest bird possible and feast on the leftovers, or do the math and plan for a turkey that will precisely fulfill your Thanksgiving needs — leftovers, optional. Here’s a handy guide to help you, whichever path you choose. If you’re of the former persuasion, go forth and find a big bird.
Nov 17, 2015
How Do I Cook a Summery Turkey Dinner?Skills
Q: My husband and I are moving next month, and I have a frozen turkey in the freezer that I’d like to use up before we go. I’d like to throw one last dinner party for some friends, but I need help finding a summer-appropriate turkey recipe that doesn’t scream Thanksgiving. I know deep-frying is an option, but I don’t have a deep-fryer and I’m a little afraid of all that hot oil.
Jul 24, 2015
Can You Freeze Baked Turkey Breast?Skills
Q: I baked a turkey breast, which was completely unthawed. Is it safe to freeze some of the slices from that turkey breast to use in a month or later? Sent by Thellma Editor: Yes, as long as the turkey breast was completely cooked through, you can freeze it for another time! Keep it tightly wrapped to prevent freezer burn. Readers, any tips on freezing cooked turkey?
Jun 18, 2015
Yes, You Can Thaw and Brine Your Turkey at the Same TimeSkills
You might think that brining is something you only do once a year with the Thanksgiving turkey, but think again! It’s an easy way to season meat and help keep it moist at the same time. While brining recipes usually assume you’re using fresh or thawed meat, did you know that you can actually wet-brine meat directly from the freezer? Since one common method of thawing meat quickly is to place it in cool water, you can use that same principle but just swap out plain water for brine.
Mar 9, 2015
Here’s What You Should Do with Your Turkey Immediately After Dinner TodaySkills
Yes, that leftover Thanksgiving turkey, carcass and all, is going to be staring you in the face on Thursday night. Do you know the best way to take it apart and store it? Or do you just loosely drape some plastic wrap or foil on top, shove it into the fridge, and plan to deal with it another time? Let’s walk through the best ways to take apart and store your leftover turkey! The first thing you have to ask yourself, before you even touch the turkey, is what you plan to do with it.
Nov 25, 2014
5 Smart Ways to Salvage an Overcooked TurkeySkills
Like it or not, turkey is the star of Thanksgiving dinner. If you pull your bird out of the oven to find it’s overcooked, you may have the urge to shed a few tears (been there, done that), but don’t panic. You’re not the first person to overcook a turkey and you certainly won’t be the last. Unfortunately there’s no way to turn back the clock and undo what’s been done. The good news, however, is that there are a few ways to salvage your overcooked turkey.
Nov 25, 2014
Your Thanksgiving Turkey TimelineSkills
People feel a lot of pressure when it comes to making Thanksgiving turkey. While some make it the same way year after year, others are tackling the big bird for the first time and even doing a practice run. How long does it take to defrost? How do you brine or dry-brine it? When do you put it in the oven?
Nov 24, 2014
7 Tips for Easy Turkey That I Learned from the Ladies of the Butterball HotlineSkills
Every holiday season the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line receives over 3 million questions by phone, email, and chat from turkey-anxious cooks. (You can call and ask about any turkey — not just a Butterball.) I visited their headquarters in Naperville, Illinois, and it was exactly how you’d picture it: There was an aroma of turkey, and everyone was on the phone or computer talking with callers or researching questions.
Nov 19, 2014
7 Mistakes to Avoid When Cooking a TurkeySkills
Turkey is certainly the masterpiece of the Thanksgiving table, presented with flourish and praise for the cook. Despite the idyllic image we’ve created of roasted turkey, it is essentially the same as roasting your Sunday chicken, albeit on a much larger scale. While there are lots of opinions about (and some sound advice for) roasting a turkey, there are just a few key steps to avoid for a terrific Thanksgiving turkey.
Nov 18, 2014
The One Thing You Shouldn’t Forget When Making a Thanksgiving TurkeySkills
If your stuffing, mashed potatoes, or pie don’t turn out well on Thanksgiving, that’s a bummer. But if your turkey is inedible and can’t be served? That’s a major problem. Despite the fact turkey is relatively easy to make, it’s this pressure that makes cooking the bird a little intimidating. Nobody wants to be responsible for messing up the main attraction.
Nov 18, 2014
The Best Place to Brine Your Thanksgiving Turkey Is in Your Refrigerator DrawerSkills
When I was at the grocery store last week, I noticed the meat department was selling plastic buckets for turkey brining that looked like the ones sold at hardware stores. They were probably about five gallons in size and two feet tall. How in the world would you fit that in your refrigerator? Unless you’re lucky enough to have a second refrigerator, the only way a bucket large enough to brine a turkey would fit in the fridge is if a lot of the shelves were removed.
Nov 17, 2014
Everything You Need to Know About Buying a TurkeySkills
You have turkey questions, and we have answers.
Nov 5, 2014
A Turkey Is Just Like a Chicken, Except BiggerSkills
It’s a little embarrassing to admit how long it took me, culinarily speaking, to get around to roasting a turkey for the first time. I had written two cookbooks and was well into a third before I actually attempted to roast a full-sized, naked turkey in all its glory. (Neither cookbook, I hasten to add, had much to do with poultry.) Are you a turkey novice too? Looking on from the side dish sidelines? Let me pull you into the game. A turkey may be big, but it’s not a big deal.
Nov 4, 2014
4 Essential Tips for Making a Better Turkey BurgerSkills
I love a good burger any time of year, but there’s something about summer that makes them even better. Lately I’ve been changing things up with lean, flavor-packed turkey burgers. Creating a good turkey burger can be tricky because ground turkey, while leaner than the beef in traditional burgers, needs a little extra loving care. Here are four tips for a juicy, satisfying turkey burger.
Jul 10, 2014
Why You Should Buy a Second Turkey, Not a Bigger TurkeySkills
Is it just me or do turkeys seem to get bigger every year? Here’s the thing: bigger isn’t always better. In fact, if you’re feeding a crowd at Thanksgiving, my advice is to buy a second turkey rather than one of those mammoth ones, and here’s why. With a big turkey, you start running into some big problems. It takes longer to thaw if it’s frozen and then exponentially longer to cook. Plus, it tends to cook less evenly, leaving you with a platter of dry meat.
Nov 26, 2013
The Science of Roasting Turkey: Nathan Myhrvold Explains the Maillard ReactionSkills
Of course you know that the iconic image of Thanksgiving dinner is the turkey, roasted brown and crisp-skinned, sitting proudly on a platter. But what you might not know is the science behind what goes on in the oven, the process that transforms a pale, flabby bird into something fragrant and irresistible.
Nov 25, 2013
Choosing a Thanksgiving Turkey: How to Plan for the Right Amount of LeftoversSkills
Turkey-stuffing sandwiches, turkey casserole, turkey chili, turkey pasta, turkey tacos, turkey soup… Sure, I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving dinner — it’s my favorite holiday, both culinary and otherwise! But it’s those delicious leftovers I’ll be dreaming about in my late afternoon tryptophan nap. In some families, the tradition of a late night Thanksgiving snack is almost as important as the meal itself.
Nov 12, 2013
Turkey Eggs: Have You Tried Them?Skills
duckquail turkey I recently picked up a few turkey eggs at my local market, struck by how big they were — between 25 and 50 percent larger than a typical chicken egg. They were pretty, too, with speckled brown shells. Cooking with them, the first thing I noticed was the thick shell, making them harder to crack (no suave, one-handed crack for me!). Inside, the yolk-to-white ratio was much higher.
May 6, 2013
What’s the Best Way to Keep a Turkey Warm?Skills
Much of the challenge associated with Thanksgiving has little to do with recipes or actual cooking; culinarily-speaking, it’s a pretty straightforward meal. Logistically, however, cooking so many dishes for a large crowd of people can feel overwhelming. Here’s one question that invariably comes up: How do I keep the turkey warm while getting the rest of the meal on the table?
Nov 23, 2011
Against Trussing: Turkey Advice from Fine CookingSkills
Trussing is that final step in turkey prep when you wrap the turkey neatly in twine and tie the legs together. Your grandma trussed. Your mom trussed. You probably truss, too. But in a recent Fine Cooking article, food science gurus David Joachim and Andrew Schlosss explain that trussing…well, it’s just not that worth it.Joachim and Schloss say that trussing prevents hot air from circulating around the legs.
Nov 3, 2011
Unexpectedly Useful: 3 Uses for a Turkey BasterSkills
A bulb turkey baster is not the most elegant of kitchen tools, but it does have its uses! Here are the big three we can think of. Do you know of others?1. Basting…Of Course – While basting a turkey may conjure images from 1970’s print ads for new ovens, basting is still alive and well in kitchens today! Here’s how to do it properly, along with basting schedules for turkeys, chickens, and other roasts.2.
Mar 30, 2011
What Is the Best Way To: Cook a Turkey?Skills
Most cooks only cook a whole turkey once or twice a year. So it’s a kitchen task that fills them with dread; it’s so big! So unwieldy! So fraught with culinary terror! Well, the turkey shouldn’t be so scary, even though it is indeed very big. What is the very best way to cook a moist, tender turkey — on Thanksgiving, or any day of the year? Do you have a failproof method?Here are a few more posts on cooking that big bird.
Feb 18, 2010
Turkey Giblets: We Got Robbed!Skills
This is our turkey, and it was missing one very important thing that we were looking forward to: the giblets! We love giblets in stuffing, and we were looking forward to putting them in our turkey stock (for gravy) and in the bread dressing itself. Well, lo and behold, when we went in to get them there was only a lone neck – no giblets.But it turns out that, given the kind of turkey we bought, we should have been ready for this. Read on to learn why.See?
Dec 1, 2008
Good Question: Basting Turkey with BrandySkills
Has anyone tried brandy as a marinade for turkey? On an old Martha Stewart show I recall Martha Stewart was in the home of an elderly Cuban woman who showed her how she prepared her turkey. The woman either marinated it or basted it with brandy. She placed the turkey in a roaster with the breast part laying down basting in the brandy. Martha had never heard of this before but did comment on how delicious and tender this bird came out.I was wondering if anyone knew this recipe?
Dec 22, 2006
Good Question: Ground Turkey PackagingSkills
Dear Kitchen,I noticed that ground turkey is now sold in these bubble-like packages. Is it safe? What is it?Stephen(To All Good Questions)There is something a bit frightening about these meat packages. We’ve long been tough to avoid canned goods that have bulging sides, but this time it’s intentional.I emailed your question to Shadybrook Farms, a main seller of ground turkey in the stores here in NYC. Shadybrok is owned by agricultural giant Cargill.
Oct 27, 2006
Getting Ready for Thanksgiving: Turkey TipsSkills
(We promise, this is the last discussion of turkey until next year.) To determine what size turkey to buy, count on each person eating 1/2 – 3/4 pounds of meat. If you want guaranteed leftovers, plan on 1 pound for each person. Remove the your fresh turkey from the refrigerator at least a half hour (no more than an hour) before putting it in the oven.
Nov 21, 2005