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by Chef Jason from 5280 Culinary

From the oven to the grill we’ll give you the considerations and tips to the time it takes to cook a turkey.

How Long To Cook A Turkey

Let Ace’s Grilling Expert, Chef Jason, shows you how to make the perfect turkey this season.

Click To Print Tip Sheet: TimeTable 2020

  • We suggest covering your turkey (foil or lid) during roasting to keep moisture in, then uncover during the last hour of roasting to cook the skin and give it that golden finish. Rest the bird UNCOVERED.
  • To bacon wrap or not to bacon wrap? Always a great flavor, but be careful with brines, seasoning and a bacon blanket as the added salt from the bacon may cause a saltier than desired turkey.
  • Adding some smoke to your turkey before roasting? Here are a couple things to remember
    • Smoke at low temp of 165˚ – 180˚
    • Smoke time is not part of the cooking time
      • If you need to cook for 3 hours and want to smoke it for an hour, add that hour to the total cook time.
    • Use fruit woods (cherry, apple or maple) for a more well rounded smoke flavor
    • Use hardwoods (alder, mesquite or hickory) for that heartier smoke flavor
  • Turkey Breast ONLY COOKING – 350 Degrees for 20 minutes, turn down to 275 until done.
    • 4 – 6 Pounds             2 Hours
    • 6 – 8 Pounds             3 Hours
  • Allow the turkey to rest for about 15 minutes prior to carving to allow the juices to settle.
  • Approx Traeger Cooking times per pound: 11-18 mins per pound, set at 350 degrees
  • Approx Big Green Egg Cooking times per pound: 11-15 mins per pound, set at 350 degrees INDIRECT
    • Big Green Egg Direct Cooking 8-10 Minutes per pound, set at 375 degrees DIRECT
  • Approx Weber Grill Cooking times per pound 11- 18 mins per pound, set at 350 degrees INDIRECT
    • Weber Direct Cooking 8-10 Minutes per pound, set at 375 degrees DIRECT
  • Save those pan drippings, they make the best gravy.

The National Turkey Federation also offers these safety recommendations:

  1. Do not roast the turkey in a oven temperature lower than 325° F. Poultry should be roasted at Minimum 325° F. or higher to avoid potential food safety problems.
  2. Do not roast the turkey in a brown paper grocery bag. Present day grocery bags may be made of recycled materials and are not considered safe for food preparation.
  3. Do use a meat thermometer (available at most grocery stores and kitchen shops) to determine the correct degree of doneness. Turkey is done when meat in the thigh reaches 180°F or (meat in the breast in finished at 165˚ – 170°F).



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