How to Make a
Deeply Flavorful
Deep-Fried Turkey

Learn how to deep-fry turkey for an impressive, delicious, no-bake Thanksgiving recipe.

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Deep Fried Turkey

A Tasty Twist on Tradition

Add excitement to your Thanksgiving dinner with deep-fried turkey! This daring culinary adventure is much quicker than a traditional oven-roasted turkey and yields a bird with moist, flavorful meat and extra-crispy skin. Use our deep-frying tips to put a tasty twist on traditional turkey!

Prep for Success
For deep-frying a turkey, you’ll need:

  • A fresh or frozen turkey free from solutions or seasonings (if frozen, thaw completely)
  • Peanut oil (best choice due to its high smoke point)
    • To determine how much oil you’ll need to cover the entire bird without spillage, put the unflavored turkey in a large sealed bag in the fryer pot and take it outside. Fill the pot with water until the bird is completely covered. Remove the turkey and mark the waterline on the outside of the fryer.
  • A large enough pot to hold a whole turkey (if brining)
  • A large aluminum fryer pot
  • A propane burner (read manufacturer’s manual carefully and follow safety precautions)
  • An instant-read thermometer
  • A fire extinguisher

Bold Brines for Extra Flavor
Brines are salt-water solutions that infuse meats with flavor—inside and out! Boost your turkey’s flavor using ingredients like butter, stock, lemon juice, tea, beer, and seasonings like rosemary, sage, and thyme. Heat the brine until ingredients dissolve, then pour over the turkey in the large pot. Make sure the brine coats the entire bird, then refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours.

Like brines, injection marinades infuse a variety of flavors into turkey; however, avoid marinades containing corn syrup, sugar, or honey, as that may burn the turkey’s surface while frying. Using a syringe or meat injector, inject the marinade into each side of the breast and smaller amounts into the legs and thighs. Be sure to inject deeper than just under the skin to avoid excessive splattering during frying, and wipe off any excess moisture before deep-frying.

Deep-Fried Turkey Tips
While deep-frying turkey is fun, it also presents unique hazards. Follow our Deep-Fried Turkey recipe or use these safety and preparation tips to fry your own deep-fried Thanksgiving masterpiece:

  • Set turkey fryer and propane tank outside on a hard, flat surface a safe distance from the house, garage or wooden deck.
  • Wear long sleeves and oven mitts and attend to the fryer at all times; most fryers have an automatic shut-off valve that needs to be re-lit every 15 minutes.
  • Starting with a clean, dry fryer pot, add the oil, cover the pot, light the fryer and heat oil to 375°.
  • With turkey and lifting hooks, carefully lower the turkey into and out of the hot oil very slowly.
  • Turkey will take approximately 3 to 3½ minutes per pound to reach an internal temperature of 165° (about 40 to 50 minutes for a 12- to 14-pound turkey).
  • To check the temperature, lift the turkey out of the fryer and insert an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh, ensuring the thermometer doesn’t touch bone.

After enjoying this more adventurous and delicious deep-fried turkey recipe, you may never go traditional again! Find more turkey tips and everything you need for your holiday celebrations at a Giant Eagle or Market District near you.

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