How to cook a turkey

How to cook a turkey

Turkey meat is considered dietary. It has a high nutritional value, as it contains a lot of protein, it does not have too much fat, and it does not cause allergic reactions in children or adults. In the diet, it can replace both white and red meat, while it costs much cheaper than beef, it turns out to be softer and better absorbed. It is not surprising that many housewives think about the inclusion of the meat of this bird in the daily diet. Knowing how to cook a turkey, you will always have tasty, hearty and healthy meat dishes on the table.

Cooking Features

The principles of cooking turkey in a saucepan are similar to the rules for boiling other poultry, the main difference is the cooking time. Knowing how to determine the correct cooking time for turkey and some other nuances of cooking this bird, even an inexperienced cook will perfectly cope with the task.

  • A tasty dish is made only from fresh turkey. The most recent products arrive on the shelves of markets and shops in the fall. Fresh turkey has light skin, often pink in color, firm meat and a pleasant smell. Flabby, slippery, exuding an unpleasant smell pieces of turkey should not be taken. The flesh of a young bird is more tender than the old one, and cooks faster. Fresh and chilled turkey dishes are more succulent than frozen ones. If you have purchased a frozen product, let it thaw in natural conditions, then the risk that it will lose juiciness will be minimized.
  • Turkey cooking time depends on the size of its pieces and the age of the bird. If you want to cook it whole, you have to spend 2-3 hours on it, and the weight of the carcass should not exceed 2 kg. If you have a larger bird, it is advisable to cut it into pieces weighing up to 1 kg (preferably even smaller). The pieces on the bone are boiled for 40-60 minutes, their size also matters. Turkey fillet (boneless) is enough to cook for 30-40 minutes. The use of a double boiler or pressure cooker will speed up the process - in these devices the turkey cooks about 20-25% faster. In a slow cooker, turkey fillets are cooked for 45 minutes, pieces of bone are not less than an hour. If you cook turkey aspic, it is advisable to increase the cooking time of the turkey by a factor of 2-3.
  • Turkey cooking technology depends on the purpose for which the bird is cooked. If you cook soup from it, then the meat is poured with cold water and only then put on the stove and brought to a boil. If your goal is to get juicy turkey meat to make a salad or second course, first boil the water and then lower the turkey into it.
  • Salt food preferably shortly before the readiness of the dish. Due to this, the poultry meat will remain juicy, and you will not over-salt the broth.
  • To make the turkey more fragrant, onions, carrots, celery root or parsley, spices are added to the broth.
  • The first 20 minutes, the turkey is cooked on medium heat without a lid, the remaining time is cooked, covered with a saucepan with a lid, over low heat. At the first stage of cooking, foam appears on the surface of the broth - it must be removed with a slotted spoon.
  • For baby or dietary food, turkey is cooked longer than usual. Cooking fillet for half an hour, the water is drained. Poultry meat is poured with clean water and cooked for another hour. When preparing a turkey for a child, no spices or roots are added to the broth.
  • If the turkey is boiled in jelly, it is not cleaned from the skin, but to obtain dietary dishes, the skin must be removed.

Boiled turkey is tasty on its own, but it is often used to cook other dishes, frying in a pan or baking. Cooked poultry snacks are prepared much faster than raw, have a slightly different taste.

Turkey cooked whole or in pieces with meat on the bone


  • turkey carcass - 2 kg;
  • carrots - 100-150 g;
  • onions - 100-150 g;
  • black pepper peas - 5 pcs .;
  • allspice peas - 5 pcs .;
  • water - how much will leave;
  • salt - to taste.

Method of preparation:

  • Rinse the gutted and cleaned carcass, blot with a napkin.
  • Boil water in a large saucepan.
  • Dip a turkey into the water. All carcass should be covered with liquid. If the liquid is not enough, pour warm boiled water. If necessary, water will have to be added later, as it evaporates during boiling. It is necessary to use exactly warm and boiled liquid, cold tap water will not work.
  • On medium heat, bring the water to the boil in a saucepan. Cook the turkey for 20 minutes, removing the foam from the surface.
  • Peel the carrots and onions, cut off the tips of the vegetables. Cut the carrots in thick circles, leave the onions intact.
  • Put the vegetables in the pan with the turkey, add the pepper. Turn down the heat. Cover the pot with a lid, leaving a gap.
  • Cook the turkey for about 2 hours. Check the bird's readiness by piercing the carcass with a knife. If the knife enters easily, the turkey is ready.
  • Salt the broth, cook the turkey in it for another 10 minutes.
  • Remove poultry from broth, strain broth.

Once the boiled turkey has cooled, it can be used for its intended purpose. The technology of cooking pieces of turkey with bones will be similar, only the cooking time will be 2-3 times less (depending on the size of the pieces).

Boiled Turkey Fillet for Diet and Baby Food


  • turkey breast fillets - 0.5 kg;
  • water - how much will leave;
  • salt - to taste (no more than 5 g per 1 l of water).

Method of preparation:

  • Rinse the turkey fillet well, pat dry with a kitchen towel.
  • Dip fillet in boiling water, cook for 20-30 minutes over medium heat.
  • Drain the broth, fill the poultry meat with fresh water, bring to the boil again. Boil 40-60 minutes. 10 minutes before cooked salted broth.

If the turkey is boiled for feeding the baby, no salt is needed at all.

Boiled turkey with sauce


  • turkey fillet - 1 kg;
  • water - 2-3 liters;
  • onions - 70-90 g;
  • carrots - 80-120 g;
  • butter - 40 g;
  • cream - 50 ml;
  • wheat flour - 20-40 g;
  • salt, spices - to taste.

Method of preparation:

  • Turkey fillet, washed and dried, cut into portions.
  • Dip the pieces of boiling water. Cook for 20 minutes, removing the foam, on medium heat.
  • Add onions and carrots, salt and spices, turn down the heat, cover the pan with a lid, cook the fillet pieces for another 10-15 minutes.
  • Carefully remove the boiled fillet from the broth, arrange it in plates.
  • Melt butter in a saucepan, fry the flour in it, pour 0, 5-0, 7 l of broth, cook it until thick. Mix with cream.

It remains to pour the meat with sauce and serve. A good addition to this dish will be a vegetable stew or mashed potatoes.

The process of cooking boiled turkey is not very complex. Knowledge of the features of the cooking technology of this bird will allow to get the expected result even to an inexperienced cook.

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