Deep Frying a Turkey Safely

Deep frying a turkey can be a dangerous task if you don’t know what you’re doing. Although a turkey fryer is an awesome tool to prepare turkey, chicken, and other holiday foods, you need to follow some rules in order to avoid injuries and accidents. 

deep frying a turkey

©Tim Sackton via Flickr cc


Deep Frying a Turkey Safety

There are three options to turkey fryers—electric, gas, and propane. A new fryer will be in top condition, but if you’re going to use a borrowed fryer or one that’s older, check it out prior to using it. Pay close attention to the cords. If the wires are frayed or exposed, don’t use it. You’ll only put yourself at risk of an injury. If you plan on using a propane fryer, make sure the tank is full and you have the right connections. Either type of turkey fryer will give you a great fried turkey so the choice is yours.

When deep frying a turkey turkey outdoors, make sure to be at least 50 feet away from your home or any buildings. There shouldn’t be any obstructions that could catch fire like trees, sheds, or play sets. Wear safety goggles, fryer gloves, as well as long-sleeved clothing that will minimize exposure to hot oil. Use a long match stick to light propane tanks, and keep a fire extinguisher handy.

Best Oil for Deep Frying a Turkey

Masterbuilt 23011014 Butterball Indoor Gen III Electric Fryer Cooker Large Capacity

Peanut oil is generally considered the best oil for deep frying a turkey. It has a high smoke point and is cholesterol free. It’s known to do the job without adding any funny aftertaste. It also has a high flash point so it’s less likely to catch fire. Make sure you have a properly-working thermometer and measure the oil to adequately fry the turkey.

Your turkey must be fully thawed. Trying to cook a frozen or semi-frozen turkey is a sure recipe for disaster–water, oil, and fire don’t mix well.

To get flavor throughout your bird, clean and dry it inside and out before seasoning. Use a marinade injector to get flavor throughout the entire bird. You can make your own marinade or buy a commercial brand, but this is an important step for taste.

Now that deep frying a turkey has become popular, indoor fryers are easier to find. No more standing outside in the snow watching over your bird as it cooks. Appliances like the Masterbuilt Butterball Indoor Electric Fryer Cooker have built in safety features like a porcelain pot, two thermostats, break-away cord, and a stainless steel exterior. This brand of fryer also uses less oil than conventional turkey fryers.

If you’re thinking of deep frying a turkey this year, don’t be intimidated by the preparation. It’s easier and safer to do now than ever before.


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  1. TheBrit

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