How To Deep Fry

Deep-frying a turkey has become more and more popular in recent years. This method turns out an irresistibly tender and delicious turkey, and is a great alternative to traditional cooking methods. It is especially important, however, to follow instructions carefully and take precautions.


Deep-Frying Indoors

Using an electric fryer indoors is a great way to get that crispy texture and delicious flavor without having to brave the elements. Given the high temperatures and dangers, be sure to follow these simple instructions:

  • Completely thaw your turkey, or use a fresh turkey.
  • Take the wrapper off of the turkey, and remove and discard the neck and giblets.
  • Add oil to the fryer, but do not exceed the maximum fill line. Preheat oil in the fryer to 400° F.
  • While the oil is heating, pat the turkey dry with paper towels and prepare your turkey with any seasonings, marinades, or injected flavors.
  • Once the oil is heated, slowly lower the turkey into the fryer. The turkey may not be totally immersed in the oil. This may cause the top part of the breast to remain white even though it is cooked to the proper end temperature.
  • Set the timer and cook the turkey about 3 to 4 minutes per pound.
  • Cook all dark meat to an internal temperature of 175° F to 180° F, and all white meat to an internal temperature of 165° F to 170° F.
  • When the turkey is done, slowly lift it from the pot and place it in a pan or on paper towels to drain.
  • Let the turkey stand for 20 minutes before removing it from the rack or basket to carve.
Deep Frying Tips
If your turkey is 14 lbs. or less, you can deep-fry it whole. If it’s 15 lbs. or more, separate the legs and thighs from the breast and fry them separately; or use a Butterball XL Turkey Fryer.
Be sure your turkey is completely thawed.
Remove any excess fat.
Do not stuff you turkey when deep-frying. Cook the stuffing separately.
To minimize sticking to the basket, submerge the empty basket in the hot oil for about 30 seconds; remove and place turkey inside and resubmerge.
Note
When cooking turkey parts, oil temperature should be 325° F; may take 4 to 5 minutes per pound to reach the recommended temperatures (dark meat to an internal temperature of 175° F to 180° F, and white meat to an internal temperature of 165° F to 170° F).
Note
There should be at least 3 to 5 inches from the fill line to the top of the pot so oil doesn’t boil over.
Note
When cooking turkey parts, oil temperature should be 325° F; may take 4 to 5 minutes per pound to reach the recommended temperatures (dark meat to an internal temperature of 175° F to 180° F, and white meat to an internal temperature of 165° F to 170° F).

Deep-frying Outdoors

Although you’re outdoors, using a propane deep fryer can be very dangerous. Never leave your deep fryer unattended and be sure to carefully follow these instructions:

  • To start, take the wrapper off of the turkey, and remove and discard the neck and giblets.
  • Deep-fry your turkey outside on a flat surface, far away from homes, garages, wooden decks, etc.
  • To determine how much oil is needed for frying, place the thawed turkey in the fryer basket and place it in the fryer. Add water until the top of the turkey is barely covered. Remove the turkey, allowing the water to drain from the turkey back into the fryer. Measure and mark the water line, and use that line as a guide when adding oil to the propane fryer.
  • Pat the turkey dry with paper towels.
  • Add oil to the fryer (based on the water line).
  • Preheat oil in the fryer to 375° F.
  • While the oil is heating, prepare your turkey with any seasonings, marinades, or injected flavor that you desire.
  • When the oil is hot, turn the burner off and slowly lower the turkey into the hot oil. Slowly lowering the basket helps prevent the oil from bubbling over. Turn the burner back on.
  • Cook the turkey about 3 to 4 minutes per pound.
  • The turkey is done when the dark meat is at an internal temperature of 175° F to 180° F and all white meat is at an internal temperature of 165° F to 170° F.
  • When the turkey is done, slowly lift it from the pot and place it in a pan or on paper towels to drain. Let the turkey stand for 20 minutes before removing it from the rack or basket.