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Roast Turkey

  • 16 pounds turkey
  • 2 Old-Fashioned Bread Stuffing
  1. Rinse the bird well on the outside, as well as inside the body and neck cavities.  Pat dry with paper towels. 
  2. Stuff bird just before cooking.  To stuff, spoon some of the stuffing loosely into the neck cavity; fasten the neck skin with a small skewer.  Lightly spoon stuffing into the body cavity.  (Put any remaining stuffing into a casserole and refrigerate.  Bake the stuffing in a 325 oven for 40 to 45 minutes or a 375 oven for 20 to 30 minutes).  If a band of skin crosses the tail, tuck the drumsticks under the band.  If there is no band, tie the drumsticks securely to the tail.  Twist the wing tips under the back.
  3. Place the bird, breast side up, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan.  Brush the bird with cooking oil or melted margarine or butter.  Insert the meat thermometer into the center of one of the inside thigh muscles, not touching a bone.
  4. Cover with foil, leaving an air space between the bird and the foil.  Press the foil lightly at the end of the drumsticks and the neck.
  5. Roast in an uncovered pan @ 325 for (8 to 12 pounds -- 3:30 to 4:45 hours) (12-16 pounds -- 4:30 to 5:45 hours) (16 to 20 pounds -- 4:45 to 5:45).  When the bird is 2/3rds done, cut the band of skin or string between the drumsticks so the thighs will cook evenly.  Uncover the bird the last 45 minutes of cooking.
  6. Continue roasting until the meat thermometer registers 180 to 185.  At this time, the drumsticks should move easily in their sockets and the thickest parts of the drumsticks should feel very soft when pressed.
  7. When the bird is done, remove it from the oven.  Remove stuffing  and cover stuffing and bird with foil.  Let stand for 15 to 20 minutes before carving.
  8. Store poultry and stuffing separately as soon as possible.