Turkey Cooking Instructions

The Holiday’s are around the corner!

Check out our instructions for how to clean, prep and cook the perfect turkey for your guests! Whether you are BBQing or Roasting your bird these quick tips will help make sure your bird is perfect! Need a meat thermometer? We have you covered! Pop by your local Halenda’s today!

Weight as Purchased
Open Pan 160C
(325F) Oven Hours
Covered Pan 180C
(350F) oven Hours
2-4 kg/5-8 lbs 3 1/2 – 4 2 1/2 – 3
4-5 kg/8-11 lbs 4 – 4 1/4 3 – 3 1/2
5-6.5 kg/11-14 lbs 4 1/4 – 4 1/2 3 1/2 – 4
6.5-7.5 kg/14-16 lbs 4 1/2 – 5 4 – 4 1/2
7.5-9 kg/16-20 lbs 5 – 5 1/4 4 1/4 – 4 1/2
9-11 kg/19-24 lbs 5 1/4 – 6 1/2 4 1/2 – 5

We recommend 1lb per person for a turkey under 18lb  and  1/2lb per person for turkeys over 20lbs (the larger the turkey, the more meat you yield) Look for the SIZE that best suits your needs.

These guidelines will give you approximately 3lbs of leftovers. The ratio is based on adults. Reduce in half for young children:

4 to 10 people:  10 – 15lb (4 – 7 kg)

12 to 30 people:  16 –  26lb (9 – 12kg)


CARVING the turkey can seem like a daunting task.  Following these tips will make it much easier.

Begin with a very sharp knife. Use a cutting board with a towel underneath to prevent slipping. Cut the drums/legs off, then the wings. Using a carving fork (has two long prongs) put fork deeply into  breast. On a slight angle, start slicing the other  breast 1/2 inch thick. Until getting close to bone. Carve other breast in same angle against the grain. Use secure meat with fork in thigh. Continue carving thighs with same procedure. Spoon some juices from the pan  over the turkey. Cover and return to oven to keep warm.


REFRIGERATE the cooked meat within 2 hours of cooking. Once carcass is cooled, put  in plastic bag and freeze. It will make a great soup stock later.

There are many great recipes that are available for turkey leftovers. Prepare casseroles and freeze before left over turkey gets dried out.

Leftover  Turkey should be consumed within 3 – 4 days. Enjoy!


When prepping the turkey, it important to wash all kitchen surfaces that will come into contact with the turkey. WASH YOUR HANDS THOROUGHLY with SOAP and water for 20 seconds. Wash kitchen surfaces with dish soap, then rinse with a sanitizing solution of 1 capful of chlorine bleach in a sink full of warm water. Follow with a rinse of hot water.

PREHEAT the oven to 400 degrees. You may want to remove the middle and top racks.

REMOVE THE PLASTIC wrap from the thawed turkey. Take the giblets and neck from the body cavity.

If you are STUFFING, either use a prepared mix or make your own. Stuff the turkey loosely, as stuffing expands as it cooks. See Recipe section for a stuffing recipe. We do not recommend that you stuff your bird if you are BBQing. It will take too long to cook.


Place the turkey in either a roasting PAN or in a disposable foil pan. If the turkey is very large, sometimes a foil pan works better. Use a baking sheet for support . You can mold the pan around the turkey. Massage your bird with butter and herbs. You may want to add a small amount (up to 1 cup) of water, broth, beer or ginger ale to the pan. Cover with lid or foil.

Place the turkey on the bottom shelf of the oven. Let the turkey cook at 400 degrees for approximately 30 minutes for the smaller turkey up to 1 hour for the larger turkey UNTIL you hear the turkey start to crackle.Baste the turkey throughout cooking process. REDUCE TEMPERATURE TO 325 F. for the remainder of the cooking time. Check for doneness by inserting a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the breast. It should read 170 F (77 C).

After the turkey has finished cooking, remove from oven, cover with foil and LET THE TURKEY REST for about 15 minutes before carving.

Remove the STUFFING and place in a bowl. Place in oven to keep warm.

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