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How to Bake a Turkey

Updated on November 21, 2013
How to Bake a Turkey
How to Bake a Turkey

Wondering how to bake a turkey? Baking a turkey is often intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Once you’ve done it the first time, it's really pretty easy. Just follow these instructions for a delicious turkey for the holidays or anytime.

You Need:

  • 1 Turkey
  • 1 Roasting Pan
  • Non-stick spray
  • 1/2 pound of butter
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Delicious Turkey for Holiday Meals

Learn How to Bake a Turkey for Your Next Holiday Meal
Learn How to Bake a Turkey for Your Next Holiday Meal | Source

Follow These Simple Steps to Bake a Turkey


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Rinse the turkey and pat it dry.
  3. Stuff the turkey cavity with stuffing.
  4. Soften the butter and rub it over the turkey.
  5. Sprinkle the turkey with salt and pepper.
  6. Spray the roasting pan rack with non-stick spray.
  7. Place the turkey breast-down on the rack.
  8. Put the turkey in the oven.
  9. Melt the remaining butter and add 1/4 cup of water to it.
  10. Baste the turkey every 20 minutes by brushing the butter and water mixture on the turkey. Once you have pan drippings, you can use those to baste the turkey.
  11. After one hour, turn the turkey breast-side up and continue baking.
  12. Cook the turkey 15 minutes for every pound if the turkey weighs less than 16 pounds. If the turkey is heavier than 16 pounds, cook it for 12 minutes per pound. The turkey is finished baking when a meat thermometer reads 170 degrees Fahrenheit in the breast and 185 degrees Fahrenheit in the thigh.
  13. Remove the turkey and place it on a platter. Let the turkey rest for 15 minutes before carving.


You're Finished!

That's all there is to it. To make sure your turkey is ready on time for your dinner, remember to thaw the turkey in the refrigerator two days before you plan on cooking it.

Also, look on the tag of your turkey to find the weight of your turkey. Multiply that amount by 12-15 minutes, depending on the size of the turkey. For example, if your turkey weighs 10 pounds, you'll need to cook it at 325 for 2 1/2 hours. Decide the time of your meal and count the cooking time backwards so you know what time to put your turkey in to cook.

After you do this one time, you'll realize there's really not that much to learn when it comes to how to bake a turkey. Soon, you'll be volunteering to do all the holiday meals.

Learn How to Carve Your Turkey!

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