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Turkey is a top priority for home cooks this time of year, especially if you’re hosting on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.If you already have, that’s a good thing.But this means the turkey is likely hiding in the freezer and needs to be thawed properly before the feast – some days In fact, before the feast.
Safely defrosting a turkey isn’t difficult, but it does take some time (and patience), so planning and setting reminders is a good idea.
The good news is that the best way to defrost a turkey happens to be the easiest, but also the slowest. No. (And no, one of them is No of.) Here are the best ways to safely thaw a turkey before Christmas this year.
See the following guides for turkey tips.When Additionally, you can check out .
Can you defrost a turkey on your kitchen counter?
Thawing turkey or chicken at room temperature is unsafe and not recommended. The key to safely defrosting turkey is not letting any part of the meat rise to about 40 degrees F for an extended period of time. Turkeys are usually very large and take a long time to defrost, so you can’t defrost them on the kitchen counter.
Best way to defrost turkey: use the refrigerator
This method is the slowest option but gives the best results: USDA suggests. Refrigerate every 4-5 pounds for 24 hours Set to 40 degrees Fahrenheit That means you should set aside a few days or up to a week for larger birds. All you have to do is put the turkey in a container to catch the drippings and hang it in the fridge.
To make sure the turkey (and other meats) you’re serving are safe to eat, get a meat thermometer. An affordable investment to help and keep your guests safe.
Turkey Thaw Time Snapshot
- 4-8 lbs: 24 hours
- 8-12 lbs: 36 hours
- 12-16 lbs: 4 days
- 16-20 lbs: 5 days
- 20-24 lbs: 6 days
The fastest (and safest) way to defrost a turkey: use cold water
This method of defrosting the turkey gives faster results than refrigeration, but requires a few more steps. (e.g. Recycle Bin). The USDA recommends changing the water every 30 minutes. I’ve found that turkey is easiest to defrost in a cooler with a tap. This allows you to easily drain the water and make room for fresh water. Alternatively, completely drain the bird once it has thawed. It takes about 30 minutes per pound to fully defrost a turkey this way.
Can you defrost turkey in the microwave?
USDA says you can defrost turkey in the microwave As long as you follow the instructions on the product and cook immediately after thawing.Even if you manage to get that big bird inside, relying on the microwave to defrost such a big piece of meat is very discreet. Even chickens are difficult to thaw well in the microwave and are usually a fraction of their size.
If anything, start by using the defrost setting for a few minutes, then combine the cold water bath and refrigerator methods above to defrost the turkey. don’t use all the time to It’s not pretty, I promise you.