So you bought your turkey and you need to cook it, but how do you know when it is done? There are some common methods for determining if the turkey is done or not which include visual and temperature checking

Correct Temperature Check

The best way to determine if you have a cooked meal that is not raw is by internal temperature.  A properly cooked turkey will have an internal temperature reading of 165 degrees.  Use a properly calibrated meat thermometer to be sure your turkey is the correct temperature.

To test to see if your thermometer is properly calibrated, boil some water and dip the tip of your thermometer in it.  A proper thermometer should measure 212 degrees at sea level.

Turkey temperature: 165º
This is the correct oven cooked turkey temp as recommended by the government!


How the turkey should look

Visually, your turkey should be running clear juices, if the juices from your bird are red from blood then your dinner is not done yet.  The easiest way to check on this is when you check the temperature – just stick your thermometer in the thigh muscle for a temperature reading – if the juices that flow out are pinkish, the turkey is still not properly cooked.


How the turkey should feel

Another method to quickly check your turkey for doneness is by wiggling the legs back and forth, if the leg feel loose enough that they would probably come right off the bone with a little pressure then it is probably ready to come out of the over.

What temperature should the turkey cook at anyway?

The temperature recommended by the government for properly cooking a turkey is 325 degrees.  The length of time depends on how many pounds of turkey you have.  Read the packaging on your turkey for the proper cook length.  It will give you a fairly decent estimate on how long it will need to cook for.  Remember, turkeys take a long time to cook properly!

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