Thanksgiving is a time to think about all the things we’re thankful for—including the amazing people in our lives who taught us how to prepare a delicious turkey. There's no one perfect method for making a turkey, but there’s plenty of good advice on how to cook the best bird for your own holiday celebration. Here are a few of our favorite turkey tips and tricks to get you going!

Prepare and cook your meal like a pro this year with our Thanksgiving turkey tips!

Turkey Tips Infographic
Turkey Tips
How to Prep & Cook Like a Pro
Size
Timing
Preparation
Cooking
Gobble it up!
FOOD FOR
THOUGHT
One pound per person to
make sure that you'll have enough
for leftovers.
Turkey Weight
# of People Served
4-12
12-16
16-20
20-24
1-3
3-4
4-5
5-6
Trust us, you're going to
want leftovers to create
this amazing sandwich!
Plan accordingly! Give yourself time to defrost your turkey (in a refrigerator).
Turkey Weight
Days to Defrost
4-12
12-16
16-20
20-24
1-3
3-4
4-5
5-6
Season Ahead
Room
Temperature
For the most flavorful bird, season
the turkey a day ahead.
Make sure
your turkey is totally defrosted before
seasoning!
Let the turkey reach room
temperature an hour before
roasting
so it cooks more evenly.
FOOD FOR
THOUGHT
At 350°F, cook your bird for about
13 minutes per pound. See our
roasting guide below
350°
13 min.
Turkey Weight
(lbs)
Approx. Cook Time
(hr)
9-11
12-14
15-17
18-20
21-23
24+
2.5
3
3.5
4
4.5
5+
Take the turkey out of the oven at least 30 minutes to two hours
before the meal.
Giving the turkey time to rest ensures juiciness once it's carved.
If you want the skin to stay golden and crisp, don't cover it while it rests.
For bigger crowds, roast two smaller
turkey (12 pounds or less) instead
of one large bird. Smaller turkeys cook more
quickly and evenly. You can try a
couple different seasonings, too!
Keep the oven door closed
as much as possible. This goes for
basting and checking the temperature of the
turkey too. Opening the door lets out heat
and prevents the bird from cooking properly.
Invest in a digital thermometer
that stays inside the turkey so
you can monitor the temperature
remotely. Once the thermometer hits
165°, it's ready.
165°
FOR GIFT GUIDES, RECIPES AND MORE
VISIT HICKORYFARMS.BLOG

Don't forget to shop our Thanksgiving Gift Ideas & Guide for more hosting and gifting ideas. And while you're at it, check out a few of our favorite Thanksgiving Day recipes from the blog:

Sources: Bon Appétit, Whole Foods, Food Network

 

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