The Best Deep Fried Turkey Recipe

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You’re missing out if you’ve never deep-fried a turkey. It’s the best technique to obtain the crispiest exterior while keeping the meat moist and tasty.

It is also far quicker than oven-roasting or smoking a turkey, so it will save you a significant amount of time on Thanksgiving day, which is always a good thing.

Deep frying an entire turkey might be frightening, but don’t be. I’ll show you everything you’ll need, how to season it, and walk you through the steps to properly deep fried your turkey.

Deep fried whole turkey

The Best Deep Fried Turkey Recipe

Equipment you’ll need to deep fry a turkey

The Best Deep Fried Turkey Recipe

  • A fryer for turkeys I adore my Bayou Classic Stainless Steel Turkey Fryer, which comes in sizes ranging from 30-42 gallons depending on the size of the turkey you want to deep fried.
  • Oil from peanuts Ideal for frying at high temperatures for a lengthy amount of time. I buy LouAna Peanut Oil in 3-gallon containers.
  • The propane stove If your frying set does not contain one, you will need to purchase one. I suggest the GasOne Heavy Duty Burner. It is quite portable and may be used for a number of purposes. a camp stove, a burner for crab boils, and a deep fryer
  • Injector Some store-bought turkey injections come with an injector, but if you want to do it yourself, you’ll need a meat injector.
  • Thermometer for meat You’ll need a decent meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of your turkey so it doesn’t overcook, as well as a thermometer to check the temperature of the oil if your frying set doesn’t come with one.

Choosing your turkey

When purchasing a turkey, there are several factors to consider. The weight you choose is mostly determined by the number of people you want to serve. 1 to 1 pound of turkey per person is a good starting point.

This is plenty to accommodate for the weight of the bones while still leaving enough of turkey for your guests to eat, and who doesn’t love Thanksgiving leftovers?

I used a free-range turkey from Crowd Cow for this dish.

Free-raised turkey is the juiciest and best-tasting turkey I’ve found, and Crowd Cow always has superb meat and fish available all year.

13 for assured Thanksgiving delivery*Please order your turkey by 11 a.m.

We offer a turkey purchasing guide if you want to learn more about all the various sorts of turkeys.

How long to fry the turkey?

Allow three to four minutes per pound for the turkey to fry. This is only a broad guideline. I strongly advise using a decent meat thermometer.

Even though deep frying is one of the more forgiving ways, you don’t want to overcook the turkey.

My turkey took 52 minutes to cook before reaching 160 degrees Fahrenheit for this recipe. If you pull the turkey out at 160 degrees Fahrenheit, it will easily reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit by the time it has rested.

How to make Deep Fried Turkey

1. Defrost your turkey (very important)

The first and most important step in frying a turkey is to make sure it is properly defrosted. We all know that oil and water do not mix, yet heated oil and freezing water do.

If your turkey is still partly frozen or has bits of ice in its cavity, you risk an explosion that would not only destroy your Thanksgiving but can also badly damage the person conducting the frying.

Do you still not trust me? If you see this little film, I believe you will reconsider.

A reasonable rule of thumb is that a turkey will thaw in the fridge in around 1 day for 4-5lbs of flesh.

So, if you have a 17lb turkey, as I did for this recipe, it will take at least four days to thoroughly thaw in the fridge.

When the turkey has completely defrosted, remove the neck and giblets.

The giblets are usually stored in a sack towards the top of the bird. It may take some digging, but I can nearly guarantee that it’s in there. You don’t want to cook it with the bag inside, so remove it!

2. Injecting & seasoning your turkey

While many people like to brine their turkey before cooking it, I don’t see a significant difference when I fried it.

Frying is one of the quickest ways to cook a whole turkey, so you don’t lose much moisture or taste throughout the cooking process.

I like injecting my fried turkeys. An injection is a fast and simple approach to add flavor to the meat.

I used Zatarain’s Creole Garlic Cajun injector for this dish. It’s available at most grocery shops and comes with enough shots for a complete turkey, as well as an injector and needle, so you’ll have everything you need.

If you have your own injector, you may also do the DIY method.

When injecting a turkey, be certain that you inject every significant area of the bird. Begin with the breasts, then go on to the legs, thighs, and wings.

It’s time to season your turkey once it’s been injected. You may use any store-bought poultry-specific barbecue rub, or make your own using our Smoked Turkey Rub recipe.

I used Whiskey Bent BBQ The Bird spice on this bird. It’s both sweet and salty, and it leaves an incredible taste when frying a turkey.

Season all sides of the turkey. You want to season every inch of your turkey to obtain the most flavor in that delectable, crispy skin.

Once the turkey has been injected and seasoned, let it aside at room temperature while you heat the oil.

3. Preheating the oil for deep frying

Heat your oil while the turkey is lying on the counter. I prefer to fried my turkey in peanut oil. It’s ideal for frying at high temperatures for a lengthy period of time.

Bayou Classic Stainless Steel Turkey Fryer is the name of my turkey fryer. The primary pot is 32 gallons in size and can easily cook an 18-pound turkey.

You’ll also need a propane-powered outdoor burner.

If your crab boil kettle does not come with a propane stove, I suggest the GasOne Heavy Duty Burner.There are several turkey fryers.

Pour in your oil once you’ve connected your propane tank to the burner. To begin, heat the oil to roughly 250 degrees Fahrenheit before adding the turkey.

4. Frying your turkey

Turn off the propane gas when the oil in your fryer reaches 250°F before adding your turkey.

This is a precautionary measure to safeguard you if your turkey was not completely thawed or if ice chunks remain in the bird’s cavity.

If the oil boils over or, God forbid, the turkey explodes, you don’t want to give fuel to the fire by keeping the propane on.

Hang the turkey on the hooks that came with your turkey fryer and SLOWLY lower it into the oil.

It will bubble a lot, but just keep lowering it until the turkey is completely immersed. Once the turkey is in the oil, turn the propane back on and crank it up until the oil hits 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Check the internal temperature of your turkey in the thickest portion of the breast after approximately 30 minutes using an instant read thermometer. Lift it out of the oil to check the temperature.

Remove the turkey from the oil and set it aside for 10 to 15 minutes to rest. During this time, the internal temperature of the turkey will continue to rise until it reaches a final internal temperature of 165F to 170F.

You may now dish it, cut it to your preference, and tuck into some wonderful deep-fried turkey!

What to serve with deep fried turkey

  • Smoked cranberry sauce
  • Smoked sausage stuffing with herbs
  • Smoked bacon wrapped carrots with maple glaze
  • Smoked beer mustard potatoes
  • Loaded potato salad


How long should I inject my turkey before deep frying?

Inject the turkey anywhere between 24 hours and 5 minutes before cooking. We got terrific results when we injected two hours before frying.

Is it better to deep fry a turkey brine or inject?

Because no extra liquid is added, a dry brine is ideal for deep frying. Dry brines also remove a significant amount of moisture from the skin, resulting in a crispy bite. My advice for frying is to inject the turkey.

Should you inject a turkey before deep frying?

Absolutely! In fact, I’d argue that it’s required! Injecting turkey spices the flesh from inside, tenderizing it while progressively dispersing the tastes throughout the bird. Injection marinades may be used with regular turkey marinades, rubs, and brines.

Should I season my turkey before deep-frying?

Before beginning, dry the turkey well, inside and out, after estimating the quantity of oil required for the deep fryer. In a mixing bowl, combine the smoked paprika, salt, garlic powder, black pepper, onion powder, cayenne pepper, and thyme. Sprinkle the spice rub into the turkey cavity and on the skin.

Should you put butter under turkey skin?

Should I put butter beneath my turkey’s skin? Yes. Putting butter beneath the skin of the meat helps to give moisture and taste.

What is the best oil to deep fry a turkey in?

Tip: Although peanut oil is the most often used oil for deep frying a turkey, any oil having a smoke temperature of 450 degrees Fahrenheit will suffice. If you don’t like peanut oil or are tolerating a peanut allergy, use safflower or corn oil.

Is 3 gallons of oil enough to fry a turkey?

For a 32-quart saucepan, use 3 gallons of oil.You’ll need enough oil to cover the whole turkey without it spilling over. A common rule of thumb is to use 3 gallons of oil for a 30 qt. pot and 3 12 gallons for a 15 qt. pot.

Do you fry a turkey at 325 or 350?

Heat oil in a saucepan (enough space in the pot for the turkey; too much oil may cause overflow), to at least 375 degrees F. The placement of the turkey will reduce the temperature, so maintain it around 325 degrees F. during cooking.

Do you brine or inject turkey first?

Benefits of injecting turkey:

Injecting is more efficient than brining. You may inject the chicken just before grilling it. What exactly is this? Melted butter, duck fat, or olive oil may be injected deep into the breast flesh to improve its succulence.


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