Roasting Frozen Turkey – In this post, I will show you how to roast a turkey while it’s frozen, the tools you will need to keep the cooking process pleasant and safe, and how to make silky, smooth gravy that your family and guests will fall in love with.
The information and tips I’ll share in this post are for 8lbs to 11lbs frozen turkey.
To some, roasting frozen turkey may sound crazy, but in reality, roasting a frozen turkey will result in a moist, juicy, and delicious turkey, reason being, the turkey will take its time to cook in low heat which helps the turkey maintain its juices. Slowly cooked meat is always tender in texture.
What to expect when roasting frozen turkey:
The texture will be moist and juicy if not overcooked.
The skin will be crispy and tasty.
The flavor won’t be different than when roasting a fresh turkey.
The roasting time will be longer since the bird is frozen.
You will not be able to stuff the Turkey.
You will roast the turkey while the giblet bag inside it (don’t worry you’ll be able to remove it before it starts to cook) but make sure that the giblets are not in a plastic bag, you might run the risk of melting the plastic bag.
You won’t be able to rub the turkey with butter while frozen but can brush it with butter after roasting for two hours and a half.
You won’t be able to tuck the wings under the bird.
Of course, you won’t be able to brine the bird but it is not a big deal.
How To Roast Frozen Turkey
You might feel that you are missing a lot of flavors when roasting frozen turkey. You can’t tuck the seasoned butter under and over the turkey skin, or even stuff it but I want you to rest assure that you can add flavor to your turkey and make it delicious!
Now! There is a tool which you have to have. A good meat thermometer. Undercooked bird will make you and your family sick for days and to avoid this horrible experience you need to measure the temperature of your bird while roasting.
Most turkeys come with pop up timer, it is usually located in the thickest part of the breast, I personally do not trust it since it pops after the breast is almost overcooked.
While roasting frozen turkey, often the breast is cooked faster than the thighs, so what happens is that the timer pop up when the breast is almost dry and the thighs might not be completely cooked.
Since you are roasting a frozen bird, and it won’t cook as evenly as when roasting a fresh turkey, you need a reliable thermometer.
When using a thermometer, measure the thickest part of the breast and make sure it reaches the safe and perfect temperature which is 165F (It will keep on cooking and reach 170F while it’s resting.)
After taking the breast’s reading, measure both thighs’ internal temperature which should read 170F or 175F. If the breast is done but the thighs temperature registers a lower number, you have two options:
*Cover the turkey breast with aluminum foil, form the aluminum foil into a tent-like or a V shape and place it over the breast, this way you won’t lose much moisture from the breast and continue cooking the bird.
*Bring out the turkey from the oven and cut the thighs off the turkey. Place the breast on the counter covered with aluminum foil to rest and return the thighs back in the oven to continue cooking.
Keep in mind that it is not important to serve a whole turkey, it’s important to serve a juicy and perfectly cooked turkey!
Preheat the oven to 325F/165C. Unwrap the turkey and place it in a roasting pan with roasting rack. At this point, all you have to do is to place the bird on the shelf above the lowest in the oven and forget about it for 2 ½ hours.
Bring out the bird and now you can remove the bag containing turkey giblets from the cavity. Tilt the bird to bring out any excess juices from the cavity, this will help the turkey cook faster.
Keep the giblets aside because we are going to use it for making the gravy. Brush the turkey with the butter and spice mixture (recipe below) and place it in the oven for another 2 hours.
Before the 2 hours are up it’s time to measure the internal temperature of the breast and both thighs, if it registers (165F) for the breast and 170 for both thighs, your bird is perfectly cooked. Allow the turkey to rest for 30 minutes while loosely covered with aluminum foil.
Roasting frozen turkey is not a difficult task as long as you have the right tools. I have used Cave Tools Rib Roast BBQ Rack. I used it for roasting my turkey but you can use it for roasting chicken, and ribs. The rack was strong and the handles made transferring the turkey from the oven to the counter easy.
Cave Tools Rib Roast BBQ Rack can be used in the oven and on a grill. Get 15% off when you purchase this rib roast rack when using this code: RIBROAST15
Here it is, the recipe for roasting frozen turkey!
This page may contain affiliate links, which pay me a small commission
For my referral at no extra cost to you.
Thanks for supporting Arinacooking.com