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cooking turkeyDefrosting your turkey

If your turkey is frozen, it is essential that the bird is defrosted completely before cooking.

Calculate your defrosting time:

• In a fridge at 4 °C, allow about 10-12 hours per kg.

• In a cool room below 17 °C, allow about 3-4 hours per kg.

• At room temperature, allow about 2 hours per kg.


Test with a thermometer to ensure there are no ice crystals. When fully defrosted refrigerate until ready to cook.


cooking turkeyCooking your turkey

Pre-heat your oven to 180 °C, remember ovens vary, so it is important to check your turkey is cooked properly, the safest way to do this is by using a meat thermometer.

Calculate your cooking time for an unstuffed turkey:

• Under 4.5 kg, allow 45 minutes per kg plus 20 minutes.

• Between 4.5 and 6.5 kg, allow 40 minutes per kg.

• Over 6.5 kg, allow 35 minutes per kg.

Cover your turkey with bacon/foil during cooking and uncover for the last 30 minutes to brown.

cooking turkey guideTesting your turkey is cooked

Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the bird, between the breast and thigh (without touching the bone), the temperature should read 74 °C.


Rest the bird for 15-20 minutes before carving. When cool, cover and refrigerate as quickly as possible. If left out at room temperature, food poisoning bacteria can quickly multiply.


Click here to download this guide as a PDF

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