Have you ever wondered if God forbid, you forget to unthaw the Thanksgiving bird, can you still cook it?

Imagine if you will the horror.  You wake up at 7 am on Thanksgiving morning to put the turkey in the oven and you forgot to unthaw the bird.  That golden turkey you were hoping to really impress the inlaws with is sure to fail right?  You begin to picture images from the movie Christmas Vacation and the family sitting around the dining room table trying to chew a turkey that has the consistency of jerky.  YIKES.  What can you do?

I know this happened to us before and I'm here to tell you there is hope. 

First off don't panic.  You CAN cook a frozen turkey or even a partially frozen turkey without a lot of things going wrong.  In my experience, you will have to cook your bird about twice as long.  If the bird is partially frozen, then you'll knock off a quarter of that time.

Now, you won't be able to do any fancy rubs or brines, but to be honest that is something that needed to be done the day before anyway.  You can still marinate the bird with butter while you cook it and season it.  WARNING, never deep-fry a frozen turkey.  Unless you want the fireman showing up at your house over Thanksgiving.

You'll want to cook the bird at the same temperature that you would've anyway. 

325 degrees, but as I said earlier, you can expect that it will take the bird twice as long to cook if completely frozen.  So, in other words, an 8 to 12-pound turkey will take you 4 to 4 and half hours.  Not so terrible.  Remember, 165 degrees is the golden rule for a done turkey.  Since the bird cooks from the outside to the inside, you'll want to take several temperatures readings around the bird.

For a complete list of cooking times for FROZEN turkeys see this article from Kitchn.  Happy Thanksgiving everybody and dig in!


 

 

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