How To Thaw A Turkey Safely

how to thaw a turkey


How to thaw a turkey. Before preparing your turkey you should make sure that it is fully thawed. Using a safe method to thaw your turkey is an essential step in preparing your turkey dinner.

Using the wrong method to thaw the bird can cross contaminate your fridge or cause salmonella bacteria to grow. However, you shouldn’t despair as thawing a turkey is pretty easy.

There Are Two Methods To Safely Thaw A Turkey:

  • The first is the refrigerator thawing method, it’s the least labor intensive of the two but takes the most time.
  • The second is the cold water thawing method, which is a relatively quick method but also the most labor intensive one.

Warning! Never thaw a turkey at room temperature because temperatures above 41 degrees Fahrenheit can start the growth of Salmonella and Campylobacter bacteria.

As you probably know these bacteria can cause severe food poisoning.

Refrigerator Thawing

  • For this you first need to make sure you have enough space in your fridge to accommodate your turkey. The turkey needs to be placed in a tray, breast side up and in an unopened wrapper and then put in the fridge.
  • Every 4 Lb of turkey will take at least 1 day to thaw, so take plenty of time for the thawing process. A quick calculation tells that an 18 pound bird will take at least 4 days to thaw in the refrigerator

Cold Water Thawing

This method is a lot quicker than refrigerator thawing, you need a container or bucket which is large enough to completely submerge your turkey.

  • With this method the turkey must be placed breast side down (unopened wrapper) in a container filled with cold water. Make sure that the bird is completely covered in water.
  • The water needs to be changed about every 30 minutes to keep the turkey chilled. Never use warm water. This thawing method takes an estimated 30 minutes thawing time per Lb of turkey.

For those really hating the idea of having to thaw a turkey, you could always buy a fresh bird. Just make sure you order it well in advance.

Enjoy your turkey!

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