Chef Carmen’s Tried & True Turkey Cooking How-to

To brine or not to brine? Deep fry? Turduckin? The myriad ways to prepare a Thanksgiving turkey range from subtle deviations from the standard roast bird to the more adventurous (i.e. a deboned chicken stuffed into a deboned duck stuffed into a deboned turkey!). Chef Carmen from our Provender, however, keeps it classic with a butter and herb-seasoned turkey.




Chef Carmen’s Turkey Cooking Instructions:


  • Whether you’re preparing a fresh or defrosted bird, be sure to rinse the turkey well and pat dry before seasoning and dressing.
  • Preheat oven to 450 ºF. Place turkey into a roasting pan with the breast up and tie legs together.
  • Season the turkey using melted butter and your choice of herbs—be sure to get the butter and seasoning under the skin but be careful not to tear it!
  • Cook for approximately 20 minutes, until light browning occurs, then reduce oven temperature to 350 ºF for remaining cooking time. Cooking time is weight-based: plan for approximately 12-14 minutes per lb. of turkey.
  • Baste every 15-20 minutes and rotate the pan every half hour.
  • Bake until inner temperature is 165 ºF at the thickest point. For a true temperature, insert meat thermometer into the thigh and push into the densest part of the breast.
  • Don’t forget to check the stuffing (if using)! It should also be 165 ºF.
  • Once at temperature, remove from oven. Let turkey rest for 20 minutes before slicing. Reserve the pan drippings to make your gravy!

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