For some, Turkey is a savory and succulent holiday centerpiece, while it is merely a vehicle for gravy for others.
Although, cooking for Thanksgiving – and other holidays – is stressful enough without having to worry about how long the main course, turkey, will take to cook. However, if you know the correct turkey temperature and how to roast a turkey properly, you will definitely have a turkey that will come out terrific or fantastic.
Follow my tips and recommendations for how to cook a turkey to make sure it’s safe to eat. I also highlighted the turkey timing tip you need, whether you’re cooking a stuffed or unstuffed turkey.
In addition, you should note that this guide is specifically for a 14-pound turkey.
Turkey Nutrition Facts
Tips To Cook A 14 Pound Turkey
- The refrigerator is the best place to thaw a frozen turkey, which can take up to a week, depending on the size of the bird. An average 14-pound turkey takes 3 to 4 days to thaw in the refrigerator.
- Cooking a completely frozen turkey is safe, but it will take 50% longer than a fully thawed turkey. Remove the giblet packet with tongs approximately halfway through if cooking from frozen.
- Cook the turkey with the breast side up. The liquids from the turkey roast down to the breast, resulting in the most delicious meat. The breast is also better shielded from the heat, preventing it from becoming overly dry.
- The turkey skin over the breast will not brown well if you roast the turkey breast down. Turn the turkey over in the pan and brown it in the last few minutes of cooking if you want browning on the breast.
- Use a meat thermometer to eliminate any guesswork about when the turkey is done. A temperature test will tell you when the turkey is done. The stuffing should reach 165°F in the center.
- Cook the turkey stuffing separately from the turkey, rather than in the cavity, so that the turkey cooks evenly.
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How To Cook A 14 Pound Turkey
Step 1: Preparation
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Remove the giblets from the hollow in the neck and the neck from the main cavity. Then proceed to rinse and dry the cavities.
Step 2: Cooking The Turkey
You should typically allow 12-15 minutes per pound for stuffed turkeys. A turkey weighing 15 pounds or more will take closer to 12 minutes per pound to cook.
You can estimate the amount of time it will take to roast the turkey based on the minimum minutes per pound and check it one hour before it is done – or you can simply adapt the cooking time that has been provided in the table down below.
Moreover, someday birds cook quickly, and I can tell you one fact – no one enjoys an over-cooked turkey. It is safe and preferable for the flavor to roast for a shorter time.
You may always resume roasting. The skin of the bird will be colored by basting it during the cooking process.
Step 3: Checking For Doneness
You can utilize two methods to check for doneness. Check the temperature or the color of the juices to see whether they’re done.
Temperature readings will be much more precise. When the internal temperature of the breast reaches 158-160 degrees Fahrenheit, we recommend pulling the bird out.
You can stick a paring knife into the thickest section of the thigh at an upward angle to see the juices as they exit the cut to evaluate the color. If the turkey is done, clear juices will flow.
I like to see a few pink drops in the juice, but not too many, to signify that we aren’t quite finished.
Step 4: Finishing Touches
Take the turkey out of the oven.
Get 8 inches of dish towels, coats, or sweaters, then it should be draped over turkey. This will allow the bird to reabsorb the liquids trapped between the skin and the meat and aid in the delayed completion of the cooking process.
While the turkey is resting, cook up the rest of your dishes in the oven. Your turkey will be ready to cut and serve after 30 minutes to an hour.
The timing for cooking the turkey can be found here. It will be much easier to get to the stage of carving the bird if you use these times as a reference.
|14 Pound (Stuffed)||325°F||3¾ hours|
|14 Pound (Unstuffed)||325°F||4 hours|
According to the USDA, the standard for an unstuffed turkey (fresh or defrosted) is 15 minutes per pound at a 325°F conventional oven. Though your turkey will cook somewhat faster if you use a convection oven.Print
- 1 hour before roasting, remove the turkey from the refrigerator, and the giblets should be removed from the body cavity or the neck cavity. Using paper towels, pat dry. It’s fine if your turkey is still cold after sitting at room temperature for a while.
- Combine the softened butter, garlic, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the turkey all over. After that, massage it with olive oil – spoon it into the turkey’s neck end if you have stuffing.
- In the lowest third of the oven, place an oven rack. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. In a roasting pan, place a wire rack. Then, breast side up set the turkey on the rack. Insert an ovenproof meat thermometer all the way into the thigh if one is available, and leave it in during baking.
- When the oven is hot, place the turkey inside and reduce the heat to 325°F right away.
- Halfway through the cooking time, baste the turkey with pan juices. After 2 hours, begin testing the turkey’s internal temperature regularly.
- Check the temperature of the turkey thigh and breast using a meat thermometer or an instant-read thermometer. When your turkey reaches 165°F, it’s done. Put the turkey back in the oven if it isn’t done yet – after 140°F, the temperature might swiftly climb.
- Remove the turkey from the oven once it has finished baking. Lift one end of the roasting pan lengthwise with an oven mitt to allow liquids from the cavity to pour out. Place the turkey on a chopping board and set it aside. Before carving, cover with aluminum foil and set aside for 30 to 60 minutes.
You can watch this video recipe to know how to cook a 14-pound turkey.