How To Fry A Turkey
You've heard all about deep fried birds for Thanksgiving, and now you want to learn how to fry a turkey? With the right equipment and a few safety tips, you’ll be able to serve a tasty fried turkey for this year’s holiday. Most people who’ve never had fried turkey think it will be greasy, but it’s moist and flavorful instead.
To fry a turkey you will need:
- An outdoor fryer kit – a burner unit, a large metal pot, a turkey rack, a hook, and a fryer thermometer.
- A full propane tank
- Meat thermometer
- five gallons of peanut oil
- A fully thawed twelve to fourteen pound turkey
- Dry seasoning for the outside of the turkey
- Liquid marinade for the inside of the turkey
- Two large aluminum pans
- Aluminum foil
- A sharp knife
- A safe surface for frying. Don’t choose your deck or inside your garage. Never try to fry a turkey inside the house.
- Determine how much oil should go in the fryer the day before frying. Place the turkey in the deep fryer pot. Fill pot with water until the turkey is covered by about two inches. Remove turkey and measure water. You will need the same amount of oil as the water.
- Season the turkey the night before frying. Inject the liquid marinade using the injector inside the turkey. Some liquid will run out of the turkey, but most will stay inside. Inject each breast two to three times and the legs, wings, and thighs one to two times.
- Place the turkey in one of the aluminum pans, cover with foil, and place in the refrigerator.
- Bring turkey to room temperature. On frying day, remove the turkey from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature. This will minimize the chances of oil spillover by placing a cold bird in hot oil.
- Assemble the fryer kit. Place the burner on a safe, flat, outdoor surface away from anything flammable. Attach the propane tank to the burner unit.
- Fill pot with oil. Only fill the pot half way or less. It will look like you don’t have enough oil, but the turkey will displace a lot of space and the oil level will rise.
- Bring the oil to between 325 to 350 degrees. Place the pot on the burner unit. Attach the thermometer to the side of the pot with the tip in the oil. Turn the burner on and monitor the oil temperature. Slowly bring the oil to temperature. Adjust the burner accordingly so that the oil heats, but doesn’t heat too fast.
- Place the turkey on the turkey rack. Put the turkey on the rack neck up. It will look like the turkey is sitting on the rack a rod sticking up through the neck. Cut away any skin that is blocking the neck so that the oil can fountain up through the neck.
- Lower the turkey slowly into the hot oil. Use the hook to lift the turkey rack and slowly lower it into the hot oil. Make sure you have a steady oil temperature. Cook slowly to make sure that oil does not boil over the tank. Too much oil, a turkey that is too cold, or dropping the turkey too fast can quickly ruin your day.
- Maintain the oil’s temperature. You may have to turn the burner up slightly to maintain the 325 to 350 degree temperature of the oil.
- Monitor the turkey to see when it is done. Frying a turkey takes three to four minutes per pound. Time it, but also check the turkey with a meat thermometer. The turkey is done when the temperature reaches between 170 and 180 degrees.
- Remove the turkey from the oil. Turn the burner off. Carefully place the hook in the upper loop of the turkey rack and slowly pull up allowing the oil to drain from the turkey. Place the turkey rack on an aluminum pan and take inside. Allow to cook until it can be handled safely.
- Allow the oil to cool. Once the oil is cooled, disassemble the fryer kit and prepare for storage.