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How To Cook Turkey Legs and Homemade Stuffing

Updated on December 4, 2016
viking305 profile image

L.M.Reid is an Irish writer who has published many articles. She has a keen interest in creating delicious recipes

Christmas Dinner

I like to buy a Turkey for the Christmas Dinner

I do not cook it all together though.

I prefer to separate the legs from the turkey breast and bone and stuff them.

Turkey Leg With Stuffing
Turkey Leg With Stuffing

How to Bone, Stuff and Roll Turkey Legs

This is a safer way to cook turkey because the parts between the legs and the breast are always the hardest to cook right through if still attached to the main body.

But I do it mainly so that I can enjoy the browner meat of the turkey leg without the inconvenience of the bones.

I can also add my own Homemade stuffing

In this recipe article I explain in detail how to remove the legs from the main body of the turkey and take out the remaining bones from the legs.

I show you how to make my own homemade stuffing and place it into the leg flesh.

There are step by step instructions with lots of photos of the process.

Roast Turkey Dinner
Roast Turkey Dinner


  • 1 large Fresh Turkey, Free Range if possible
  • 2 packets of Breadcrumbs
  • 4 Large Onions
  • 1 ½ pounds of Butter
  • Large amount of Fresh Parsley, or dried if fresh is unavailable
  • Packet of Dried Mixed Herbs
  • Box of Aluminium Tin Foil
  • Box of Bisto Gravy Powder
Fresh Turkey for Christmas
Fresh Turkey for Christmas
 Turkey Breast
Turkey Breast


  • Pre heat the oven to 325 f
  • Remove any unnecessary objects from the kitchen counter before you open the turkey.
  • This will save you touching anything once you have the turkey out of its wrapping.
  • Remove the turkey from the wrapping
  • Cut the string that is holding the legs together
  • Remove the giblets from inside the Turkey.
  • These are usually inside the cavity in a bag
  • Wash under a lukewarm tap in the sink
  • Make sure to wash inside the cavity as well.
  • Place the turkey onto a chopping board and pat dry with throw away paper towels

How to Cut the Legs off the Turkey

Turkey Legs
Turkey Legs
Turkey Leg
Turkey Leg
Boning the Turkey Leg
Boning the Turkey Leg
Gently Pull  the Turkey Meat
Gently Pull the Turkey Meat

Instructions Continued

  • Take hold of one of the legs in one hand pulling it away from the main body.
  • Use a very sharp knife to cut around the skin that is keeping it attached.
  • Gently pull away the leg and place on a plate
  • Do the same for the other leg
  • Take one leg and hold it by the largest bone.
  • Use the knife to cut the meat away from the leg bone.
  • Twist the leg around as needed until all the bones have been removed
  • Place the meat onto some aluminium foil

Turkey Legs with Stuffing

Stuffing Recipe
Stuffing Recipe

How to Add the Stuffing

  • Spread it out as much as possible and add the stuffing
  • Roll the top leg meat over so that you have the stuffing in the centre with the meat on both sides.
  • Do the same for the other leg
  • Cover with the tin foil and place in the oven on the lowest shelf.
  • This can be cooked at the same time as the main turkey breast
  • The stuffed turkey legs should only take about two hours to cook through
  • Check them after about one and a half hours to make sure as each oven if different.
  • If you have a fan oven they will take shorter time to cook.
  • Leave in the tin foil to cool until you are ready to serve.
  • When you carve the turkey legs you will find it is very easy to keep the meat and stuffing together

Turkey Legs
Turkey Legs
Turkey Christmas Dinner
Turkey Christmas Dinner

How To Roast the Turkey Breast


  • Spread the butter, which should be softened at room temperature, all over the outside of the turkey
  • Add sprinkles of salt and pepper if required
  • Put the turkey into a cooking bag if you have one and put in a roasting tin.
  • If you do not have a cooking bag then add about an inch of water to the roasting tin and then place the turkey in the middle of it.
  • Cover the turkey with aluminium foil.

Some people would add an onion cut in half and some other vegetables to the roasting tin at this stage too. This is up to you if you want to do so. I prefer to leave the turkey alone to cook in the oven.

  • Put the roasting tin in the middle shelf of the oven at 400 F for 20 minutes.
  • Then lower the temperature to 325 F until an hour before the turkey is due to finish roasting.

Roast Turkey Breast
Roast Turkey Breast
Roast Turkey Dinner
Roast Turkey Dinner

Cooking Time

A turkey which includes the legs attached would normally take approximately 15 minutes for every pound.

Because the turkey only has the breasts and wings it will be more like 10 minutes to every pound.

  • Check on the progress of the turkey an hour before it is due to be finished cooking.
  • You can add some of the juice from around the turkey to the top of it to make it more succulent.
  • At this stage if it is not in a roasting bag and is covered with aluminium tin foil then I remove this in order to allow the breasts to brown
  • The final hour or so lower the temperature to about 250 F
  • Check the turkey is completely roasted by sticking a knife into the meat.
  • If it comes out clean with no runny pink juice then it has roasted thoroughly.
  • The meat between the wings should not be pink either.

The cooking times are always only approximate so go by your common sense when deciding if the turkey is fully cooked not by the times given.

  • Remove from the roasting tin and bag if you used one, and put onto a large serving dish.
  • Cover loosely with fresh aluminium tin foil and leave to cool for at least half an hour before carving.
  • Pour the juices into a pot to use later when making the gravy

How to Make Homemade Stuffing

I prefer to buy the breadcrumbs ready made these days. But if you wish to make your own it is easy enough.

  • Break the bread up into small pieces and put in a blender.
  • Turn this on until the bread has turned into breadcrumbs of your desired size.
  • Peel and chop up the onions into small pieces.
  • Add halve the butter to a large pot and heat until nearly melted
  • Add the chopped onions and cook until soft and slightly brown

Homemade Stuffing
Homemade Stuffing

Stuffing Recipe

  • Add half the the parsley over the onions. I prefer to use fresh parsley because it tastes better but if you are unable to buy this then use dried parsley.
  • Add some mixed herbs too.
  • Stir in well
  • Put the remaining butter into the pot and stir until melted

If you are making stuffing for the first time you will know once you have tasted it whether you need to add more or less of the seasoning for the next time. It all depends on your own taste

  • Now add in the breadcrumbs and mix until all the wet ingredients have dissolved into them.
  • Add the remaining parsley and mixed herbs and stir in well

Cooking Stuffing
Cooking Stuffing
Homemade Stuffing
Homemade Stuffing

Turkey Breast and Legs

5 stars from 2 ratings of Turkey Legs Stuffed and Boned

This year I bought two aluminium dishes to use for the stuffing. You can use a roasting dish if you wish.

  • If using the aluminium dishes grease the bottom and sides with butter and then pour the stuffing into the dishes.
  • Cover with some tin foil
  • If using a roasting dish grease the bottom and sides first.
  • Then add a large sheet of aluminium foil making sure there is enough in it so you can cover the stuffing.
  • Add the stuffing to the tin foil and cover over.
  • Put the stuffing into the oven on the lowest shelf and cook for one hour.
  • Remove the trays from the oven and gently stir until the crispy parts on top have moved further down.
  • Put back in the oven for a further one hour

This allows the rest of the stuffing to become crusty too. Because it is on the lowest shelf in the oven it can be returned there to stay warm until you need it.

All Images are the copyright of L.M.Reid

Christmas Dinner

Turkey Dinner with Gravy
Turkey Dinner with Gravy

My Mother Shows How To Bone and Stuff Turkey Legs


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    • Susan Recipes profile image

      Susan 2 years ago from India

      Wow... Yummy hub and the photos are amazing.

    • viking305 profile image

      L M Reid 2 years ago from Ireland

      Thanks Susan yes it did taste so nice. The brown meat of the turkey is always a lot tender and juicy than the breast

    • Jaypyramid profile image

      Jaypyramid 2 years ago

      Your articles are so easy to follow, I love the photos and oh my, that looks so delicious. The stuffing, must try it. Well done and Thank you

    • viking305 profile image

      L M Reid 2 years ago from Ireland

      Cooking Turkey Legs once they are boned is a pleasure especially when I fill them with my own stuffing.

      Thanks Jay for your comment, it is appreciated

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      you could open up a restaurant for this yummy turkey recipes

    • viking305 profile image

      L M Reid 2 years ago from Ireland

      Yes Turkey Legs Stuffed with homemade stuffing does taste so good

      Thank you peachpurple for taking the time to leave a comment

    • Casangel profile image

      Casangel 18 months ago

      Yummy yummy going to try that with turkey legs, I usely just cook them and hubby has them but this year im going to try your way, wish me luck.

    • viking305 profile image

      L M Reid 17 months ago from Ireland

      Hello Casangel.

      Yes if you cook your turkey legs that way then the kids can have some too. There is no need to worry about the bones. The turkey meat on the leg is a completely different taste to the turkey breast.

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