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With the holidays quickly approaching you may want to brush up on your turkey knowledge!  This can be a stressful time of year, so lets make it easier on ourselves!  Use these helpful tips and tricks – from thawing to carving – for a smooth and relaxing holiday season.

Turkey Tips:

  • Purchase one pound of turkey for each guest.
  • Allow enough time for the turkey to thaw (see charts below).
  • Cook the bird until a meat thermometer reaches 180 degrees F in the thickest part of the thigh.
  • If the bird is stuffed, the stuffing must reach 165 degrees F.
  • Allow the bird to cool for about 10 minutes before carving.
  • Use a long, sharp knife and a two-pronged fork for carving.
  • Have an idea of how to carve a turkey (see video below).
  • Leftovers should be stored in shallow containers within two hours of cooking.
  • Use leftovers or freeze within four days.
  • Save your turkey carcass for delicious homemade bone broth.

Thawing a Turkey:

In the refrigerator (40 degrees F or below): Allow about 24 hours for every 4 to 5 pounds.

4 to 12 lbs1 to 3 days
12 to 16 lbs3 to 4 days
16 to 20 lbs4 to 5 days
20 to 24 lbs5 to 6 days

Keep the turkey in its original wrapping.  Place in a tray or pan to catch any juices that may leak.  Once the turkey has thawed, it can remain in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days.  A turkey thawed in this manner can safely be refrozen, according to the USDA.

In cold water: Allow about 30 minutes per pound.

4 to 12 lbs2 to 6 hours
12 to 16 lbs6 to 8 hours
16 to 20 lbs8 to 10 hours
20 to 24 lbs10 to 12 hours

Wrap the turkey well so that water is not able to leak through the wrapping.  Submerge turkey in cold water and change the water every 30 minutes.  Cook the turkey immediately after thawing.  Do not refreeze.

Guide To Roasting Your Turkey

Watch the following video for a guide to cooking your holiday turkey.

How to Carve a Turkey:

The thought of carving a turkey can bring on an anxiety attack for some.  Instead, watch this quick video and take the guess-work out of properly carving a bird.

We wish you a wonderful and joyous holiday season!

If you haven’t tried pasture raised turkey, check out our wide variety for families large or small. Remember to save the bones for a healthy, rich flavored bone broth.

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