3 Ways to Thaw your Thanksgiving Turkey Fast

Did you forget to thaw your Thanksgiving turkey? Depending on the size of your bird, you may have required to begin thawing it several days ago.

Don’t worry if you forgot to take it out of the freezer or if you did it too late!

The USDA has some helpful thawing instructions for turkeys. USDA recommends to submerge the wrapped turkey in cold tap water after placing it in a water-tight bag. Then, every 30 minutes, change the water until it has thawed.

How long does it take to thaw turkey with cold water?

Here is how long it takes to thaw a turkey using water:

4 to 12 pounds — 2 to 6 hours

12 to 16 pounds — 6 to 8 hours

16 to 20 pounds — 8 to 10 hours

20 to 24 pounds — 10 to 12 hours

The USDA states that once a turkey has been thawed, it must be cooked within one to two days or it will become infected. On the other hand, here is a rough rule of thumb for when to move your turkey from the freezer to the refrigerator:

4 to 12 pounds — 1 to 3 days

12 to 16 pounds — 3 to 4 days

16 to 20 pounds — 4 to 5 days

20 to 24 pounds —5 to 6 days

What are other ways to thaw a turkey?

Thawing using refrigerator

You can also thaw your turkey in the refrigerator. The turkey will thaw at a steady, safe temperature using this procedure.

Here, you should allow one day for every 4 – 5 pounds of weight lost using this method. It will take around four days to defrost a 16-pound turkey.

Moreover, the turkey is safe for another two days after it has been thawed, so you can begin thawing it six days before Thanksgiving (the Friday before Thanksgiving).

The other two techniques (cold water and microwave) must be completed right before beginning to cook the turkey, which means you’ll have to wait until Thanksgiving morning.

Thawing using microwave

Remove the turkey’s outer covering and lay it on a microwave-safe dish to catch any juices that may spill. Use the weight-based defrost function. When thawing a frozen turkey in the microwave, allow 6 minutes per pound. During the thawing process, spin it numerous times and even flip it.

Next, allow the turkey to rest for 5 minutes before resuming thawing if it begins to cook rather than just defrost.

Cover the tips of the wings and drumsticks with a small piece chicken foil halfway through thawing to protect them from the microwaves and keep them from frying. You should cook the turkey as soon as it has thawed.

Can I still cook a frozen turkey on Thanksgiving?

Don’t worry if your turkey is still ice on Thanksgiving morning!

It is entirely safe to cook a frozen turkey; it will simply take longer to cook. A frozen turkey will take at least half as long to cook as a thawed bird.

Just remember that if your turkey is only half frozen, it will take a little longer to cook. Use your food thermometer to check the temperature of your bird in the innermost portion of the thigh, the innermost part of the wing, and the thickest section of the breast.

Enjoy your Turkey this thanksgiving!

And that’s how you thaw a turkey! We’re guessing you’ve got a fridge full of leftover turkey after thanksgiving! Here’s a tip – don’t throw out those leftovers as you prepare for the upcoming winter holidays, as sandwiches, spreads, salads and other sumptuous meals are always ideal in the table!