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A Guide to Thanksgiving Turkey: Thawing and Roasting

By Shauna Hanus Created: November 19, 2012 Last Updated: November 25, 2012
Related articles: Life » Food
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It can be overwhelming wondering how much turkey to serve per person. Try to have enough so each person can have at least two servings and enough for turkey leftovers. (Eugene Bochkarev/Photos.com)

It can be overwhelming wondering how much turkey to serve per person. Try to have enough so each person can have at least two servings and enough for turkey leftovers. (Eugene Bochkarev/Photos.com)

As Thanksgiving approaches and you begin to prepare for your Thanksgiving turkey dinner, you may be having questions about how much turkey you need per person, or how long it takes to thaw a frozen turkey. Finally, there is the all-important “How long do I need to roast my turkey?” 

Here are three guides to follow to help you achieve your perfect Thanksgiving turkey. 

When you are planning your Thanksgiving turkey dinner, it can be overwhelming wondering how much to serve per person. You will want to have enough for each person to have at least two servings and enough for turkey leftovers.

Turkey

Up to 12 pound turkey = 1 pound per person 
Over 12 pound turkey = 3/4 pounds per person 
Bone-in breast = 1/2 pound per person 
Boneless breast = 1/3 pound per person

Turkey Thawing Guide

Refrigerator thawing is the recommended method for thawing turkey. It used to be common practice to thaw turkey in the sink with cold water. The problem with this method is that bacteria can grow on the turkey while it is thawing. This is the reason that refrigerator thawing is recommended.

6 to 8 pounds = 1 to 1 3/4 days 
8 to 12 pounds = 1 to 2 days 
12 to 16 pounds = 2 to 3 days 
16 to 20 pounds = 3 to 4 days 
Bone and breast = 1 to 2 days 
Boneless breast roll = 1 1/2 to 2 days

Turkey Roasting Guide

Preheated 325 degrees F oven. 

6 to 8 pounds = 2 1/4 to 3 1/4 hours 
8 to 12 pounds = 3 to 4 hours 
12 to 16 pounds = 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 hours 
16 to 20 pounds = 4 to 5 hours 
Bone and breast = 1 1/2 to 2 1/4 hours 
Boneless breast roll = 1 3/4 to 2 1/2 hours

Shauna Hanus is a gourmet cook who specializes in creating gourmet recipes. She has extensive experience cooking with easy-to-find grocery items to create delightful gourmet meals. Permission to reprint article given by Momsmenu.com.

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