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Nov 25, 2010 05:35 AM

Turkey - does it need to sit out?

Does a turkey need to sit out/be brought to room temp before cooking? If yes, how long? Thanks in advance!

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  1. I don't bring mine to room temp but it's usually out of the frig about a 1/2 hour before cooking. I rinse, pat dry and get it in the roaster.

    1. Yes, it should sit out but more important is a rinse if the cavity seems at all icy. Counter time is also a function of size so that part of your question is impossible to answer.

      1 Reply
      1. re: greygarious

        Thank you so much for the quick responses! It's 17 lbs.

      2. Eh, an hour or so, two hours.

        1 Reply
        1. re: jaykayen

          That's how long my 17lb bird was on the counter. I agree!

        2. Yipes, I have never let the turkey sit out, since the bad old days when we thought that was how to thaw it!

          I thaw it in fridge and it's out just long enough to rinse, stuff, stick in the pan and get in the oven.

          1. If it's not frozen - no need to let it sit out. Just use a thermometer in the deepest part of the thigh and wait for 165F. Then let it sit under AL foil for 30min out of the oven. It will be great!
            17lbs should take ~2hrs.

            4 Replies
            1. re: DHall001

              You may not know how cold the deepest section of the breast meat is. It could be partially frozen while the meat you can feel is thawed. Hence the advisability of letting it sit at room temp or rinsing the cavity. It is not helpful to suggest cooking time when you don't specify oven temp.

              1. re: greygarious

                I completely believe what you say. I've been surprised more than once when the inside wasn't completely thawed. I also never cook so many minutes per pound. My meat thermometer is my most indispensable kitchen tool when cooking meats.

              2. re: DHall001

                7 minutes per pound? At what temperature?