Learn How Long You Should Thaw A Turkey For Thanksgiving

Learn how to thaw a turkey properly for Thanksgiving
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Thanksgiving is coming up quickly. If you’re cooking this year, you might be wondering when you should get out the turkey. You’ll need to thaw your turkey ahead of time so you can cook it properly for Thanksgiving. Keep in mind the general size for a turkey is 10 pounds.

The easiest way to thaw a turkey is in the refrigerator. All you need to do is leave the turkey in its packaging, put it in a pan and leave it in the fridge. It should take about two days to thaw completely and properly. If your turkey is slightly smaller, it may only take one day. If it is slightly larger, it may take 3-4 days.

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Different ways of thawing a turkey

how to thaw a turkey infographic
Thaw a turkey / Flickr

If you completely forget to put your turkey in the fridge, you need to do a little more work. You can thaw it properly in the kitchen sink. You’ll need to fill a bucket or the entire sink with cold water. However, you need to change the water every 30 minutes to keep it fresh. Never use hot water because it could risk the turkey growing bacteria.

RELATED: Don’t Make These 13 Turkey Mistakes Most People Make On Thanksgiving

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butterball frozen turkey
Frozen turkey / Facebook

Once the sink is full of cold water, place the packaged turkey in a large ziplock bag and get it completely under the water. You might have to put something heavy on top to keep it fully submerged. Cans work well for this. It should be thawed in about five hours, but you’ll need to cook it ASAP after. Small turkeys may take 1-4 hours and larger turkeys may take about 6-8 hours to thaw.

thanksgiving turkey
Thanksgiving turkey / Facebook

If you need to thaw your turkey… well, yesterday, you can put it in the microwave. You will need to remove the turkey from the packaging fully and take out all of the metal parts. Put it on a microwave-safe plate and change the settings for thawing. This should take about an hour and then you’ll need to cook it right after. You will also need to disinfect your microwave afterward. Keep in mind, this isn’t really recommended if you can avoid it.

Happy early Thanksgiving!

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