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Thanksgiving is both a time come relax through family and friends and also stress around the meal that"s at danger of either burning in the stove or exposing love ones come salmonella. While cooking a turkey deserve to seem prefer a daunting task that"s complete of mystery, figuring out exactly how long the bird should roast is actually rather easy.

You are watching: How long to cook a 12 pound butterball turkey

Similarly to various other pieces that poultry and also meat, the food preparation time is dependency on a few factors, one of which is the size. The larger the bird, the longer the chef needs to reserve stove space. But, determining just how long the star that the Thanksgiving meal requirements to chef is dependency on much more than just size. Food preparation time additionally depends top top the type of cooktop that"s gift used.

If you"re using a consistent oven it"s going to take slightly much longer than a convection oven, therefore it"s ideal to pick the cooking an approach ahead that time. Butterball argued cooking the bird at 325 levels Fahrenheit in a constant oven.

But, the cooking time isn"t just dependent top top the size of the bird or the stove that"s gift used. It"s likewise dependent ~ above if the chief has made decision to stuff the bird prior to putting that in to cook. For an unstuffed bird, Butterball recommended the following food preparation times:

6-7 pounds: 2-2½ hours7-10 pounds: 2½-3 hours10-18 pounds: 3-3½ hours18-22 pounds: 3½-4 hours22-24 pounds: 4-4½ hours24-30 pounds: 4½-5 hours


A chef areas fresh turkeys in the oven, just a portion of the 700 that have actually been ready for Thanksgiving. Cooking times because that turkey rely on the size of the bird, the stove being used and also if the bird has actually been stuffed.TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty ImagesCook times boost slightly if the bird was stuffed before being cooked and readjust to:

6-7 pounds: 2¼-2¾hours7-10 pounds: 2¾-3½ hours10-18 pounds: 3¾-4½ hours18-22 pounds: 4½-5hours22-24 pounds: 5-5½ hours24-30 pounds: 5½-6¼ hours

If many dishes room being cooked and oven an are needs to it is in freed up or if the chef find themselves in a time crunch, it"s much better to switch the cooktop to the "convection" setting, if possible. It must still be set to 325 degrees Fahrenheit, follow to Butterball, but it cuts down on the required food preparation time. For an unstuffed turkey, Butterball recommended:

6-10 pounds: 1½ -2 hours10-18 pounds: 2-2½ hours18-22 pounds: 2½-3 hours22-24 pounds: 3-3½ hours

If the turkey is stuffed and a convection stove is being used, cooking times change to:

6-10 pounds: 1¾-2½ hours10-18 pounds: 2½-3¼ hours18-22 pounds: 3¼-3¾ hours22-24 pounds: 3¾-4¼ hours

Although these room recommended cooking times, the best way to understand if a turkey is excellent roasting in the oven and also ready come be offered is to look in ~ its interior temperature. Once a turkey is completely cooked, the thigh will certainly register in ~ 180 degrees Fahrenheit on a meat thermometer and also the chest or stuffing will certainly be 170 levels Fahrenheit.

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Turkey meat that appears pink deserve to be worrisome to some civilization who believe that it method the bird isn"t totally cooked. However, the United says Department of agriculture explained the as long as the meat has actually reached the suitable temperature, it"s for sure to eat.