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How To Cook A 20 Pound Turkey

All you need to know about: How To Cook A 20 Pound Turkey.

Preparing the Turkey

Before you get started, you’ll need to thaw the turkey. If it is frozen, allow 24 hours for every 5 lbs of poultry in the refrigerator. Once your turkey is thawed, you can begin to prepare it.

Remove the giblets and neck from inside the turkey, rinse it with cold water, and pat it dry with paper towels. Rub the outside of the turkey with softened butter or oil, and season generously with salt and pepper.

Stuffing the Turkey

If you plan to stuff your turkey, now is the time. Use a stuffing that can be cooked safely inside the turkey, such as one made with cooked sausage. Stuff the turkey loosely, as it will expand as it cooks.

Cooking the Turkey

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the turkey, breast side up, on a roasting rack in a roasting pan. The roasting pan should be large enough to hold the turkey comfortably.

Cover the turkey loosely with aluminum foil. Place in the oven and roast for 15 minutes per pound. For a 20-pound turkey, this will take about 5 hours.

Checking for Doneness

When the turkey is about 2 hours from being done, you can check for doneness. Insert an instant-read thermometer into the thickest parts of the turkey (the thighs and the breast). The turkey is done when the thermometer reads 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

If the thermometer doesn’t reach 165 degrees, place the turkey back in the oven and continue cooking. Check the temperature every 30 minutes until it reaches 165 degrees.

Resting the Turkey

When the turkey is done, remove it from the oven and let it rest for at least 20 minutes before carving. This will allow the juices to redistribute and the meat to become even more tender and juicy.

Finally, carve the turkey and serve with your favorite side dishes. Enjoy!

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