Oven Baked Turkey
Oven baked turkey is something our family has grown up making for the holidays. Easter, Christmas and Thanksgiving are known to have a turkey or a ham. Sometimes both are served.
Baking a turkey in the oven is not difficult, it just takes time. Check out how we make a simple turkey in the oven, no brine required for a juicy bird.
How Long Should You Thaw a Turkey?
For every 4 pounds of turkey, you will need 24 hours of thawing time. So if you have a 14 pound turkey, you should plan you thawing your turkey for 5 days. Thaw the turkey in the fridge with a towel below it (or in a shallow pan).
Tip: Figure this out and then set a reminder on your phone to get the turkey out of the freezer to thaw on time.
How Long to Cook a Turkey
Note: I will not be telling you how to cook giblets or the neck. Those are a hard pass in our house.
Check that your oven racks are in the right position for baking a turkey.
Preheat the oven to 425F.
You will want to have:
- sharp knife
- cutting board
- paper towel
- olive oil
- turkey bag
- roasting pan
- bowl of prepared stuffing
- halved large onion or quartered oranges/lemons (optional)
Remove the turkey from the fridge and place on the cutting board.
Remove the turkey from the bag and discard the bag, gizzards and neck.
Pat the turkey down with the paper towel to dry.
Cut any excess skin from the neck area of the turkey.
Rub 2 tablespoons of butter on the turkey. It won’t work, so leave it at the top of the turkey.
Pour about 2-4 tablespoons of olive oil over the turkey and rub into the outside of the bird.
Take about a tablespoon of pepper and sprinkle it over the outside of the turkey.
Place the turkey into the turkey bag and place the turkey into the roasting pan.
If you want, you can put the cut onion or fruits into the cavity of the turkey.
Place the stuffing around the turkey (but not inside).
Make sure the bag has some air to it and seal it closed.
Cooking Your Turkey
Start out cooking your turkey at 425F.
After 40 minutes, turn the heat down to 325F.
Plan on 15-20 minutes for every pound. Confirm it is done if the temp is 165-170F in the thickest part of the thigh. Remove and allow the turkey to sit. The turkey will continue to cook after being removed from the oven.
Tip: I buy those turkeys who have the pop out timer, so I know it’s done and we don’t dry the turkey out.
Slice the turkey nicely and enjoy with a side of turkey gravy.