Why fry a turkey? Because it's delicious. And fast. Now that I've fried a turkey for Thanksgiving, I'm not sure if I could go back. Not only is it extremely tender and flavorful with perfectly crisp skin, but we were able to prepare a Thanksgiving meal for 15 in less than two hours start to finish. When cooking a traditional Thanksgiving feast there are often traffic jams for oven time, so being able to free up your oven is one of the biggest advantages to frying. Plus, it's fun!

Step 1: Safety

Safety, who needs that? Safety third! But seriously, people burn down their houses every year from doing something dumb with a turkey fryer. As long as you follow basic safety concepts regarding frying oil over an open flame, you're gonna be fine.

Safety Tips:
• Fry your turkey outside, away from anything flammable. As in, not on your wooden deck, inside your garage, in your kitchen, or anywhere that overflowing flaming oil would be catastrophic to your home. Read: concrete, dirt, gravel away from everything, on level ground. Put the propane tank as far away from the fryer as possible.

• Make sure your turkey is thawed and dry. A frozen turkey can explode, and a wet turkey will make the oil bubble to the point of overflowing when lowing in the turkey.

• Do not use too much oil. If the oil overflows, you've got potential for an oil fire. Most turkey fryers will have an oil line to save you the trouble, but when in doubt, put your turkey in the fryer, fill with water until turkey is covered, take out the turkey, and mark the water line so you know exactly how much oil to use.

• Don't leave the fryer unattended. Once the flame is on, keep an eye on the turkey and the temperature. If the oil starts smoking, turn down your heat. You want to cook at a steady 350 degrees.

• Lower turkey into the fryer slowly to avoid oil overflowing. You can turn off the burner during this process so if oil does spill it doesn't catch fire, then turn it back on once the turkey is in.

• Keep a fire extinguisher handy. Oil catches on fire if it exceeds a certain temperature. First it will smoke, so if you see the oil start to smoke turn down your heat. If there is a fire, it is an oil fire so do not use water to extinguish. If there is a fire, kill the flame and cover the pot if it's safe to do so, and if not call the fire department immediately.

Image courtesy of this site, which has further reading on safety guidelines.

<p>Looks delicious!!!</p>
Nice tips, never fried a turkey before, how long do you fry it for, say a 15 pound turkey? Thanks.
<p>Around 45 minutes. See step 5 for more information. Good luck!</p>
<p>by the way your fryer is not just for turkey! i have pulled all kinds of goodies out of mine</p>
<p>Yep! We cooked our whole dinner in the fryer in under 2 hours. It's the best.</p>
<p>wow!<br>Look it very delecious.</p>
<p>ive read that to fast thought it said how to fly a turkey. saw this manytimes before and theres always a ball of fire</p>
<p>If you are using a propane cooker, make sure your gas lines are clear. Seems like spiders like these lines and leave their silk to clog the lines. Otherwise, you will get a sooty, yellow flame that won't get hot enough, and the soot will mix with any oil that splashes out of your pot, and will make an asphalt-like coating on the outside of your pot. Which will probably further insulate your pot. I bought one of those electric fryers and it works great for this. I've heard the infra-red oilless fryers work well, but I haven't tried one.</p>
<p>be sure to wear GOOD leather gloves when lowering bird in oil, bird will act like old faithful if you lower to fast and oil hurts like h311 when it gets you. </p>
<p>My sister and BIL (a firefighter) set up a turkey fry assembly line every year to serve the whole neighborhood. Get more out of the oil. They have two people and a long 2x4 for lifting. I used Alton Brown's Turkey Derrick. <a href="http://www.altonbrown.com/pdfs/AB_turkey_derrick.pdf" rel="nofollow"> http://www.altonbrown.com/pdfs/AB_turkey_derrick....</a></p><p>I already had the ladder, so it only cost a few dollars for the extra parts.</p>
<p>Since I'm safety conscious (or paranoid), we lower the turkey into the oil by using a broom stick through the handle and one person holds each side of the stick and we lower the bird in that way. This keeps you away from the top of the fryer. I like the tip on turning off the burner.</p>
I've done about 6 or 7 now. I really like that you mentioned turning off the burner while adding the bird. I think its the best safety tip around, and my manual didn't mention it. I discovered it myself on my third attempt which was a bit oversize and could have been bad if we weren't paying attention.
Duck is sublime, goose is still goose (not a fan of goose cooked in any way). I like to fry spam while the bird cooks ( I use a long hot dog fork) to help fend off the teenager appetites...they got hooked on spam a few years back on a camping trip!
nice,I have been deep frying birds for over 15 years.IMO it is the only way to do turkeys or even chicken(never tried a duck or goose).I use an empty beer keg and 5 gallons of peanut oil, the bottom of the keg fits snugly on the rim of the burner so no chance of it falling off.I have cooked a 23 lb turkey in it and had plenty of room.Also I have never used a basket just have a round stainless steel rack on the bottom to keep the bird from contacting the keg,works great.
Thanks for the tip. Seems like any method to keep the bird from having direct contact with the bottom will work, good suggestion.

About This Instructable


130 favorites


Bio: I'm a designer at Instructables. I have a degree in fashion design and like to sew, get crafty, and attempt to use power tools.
More by Natalina: Copy Your Clothes! Fiber Optic Coat Make a Tent Footprint
Add instructable to: