How to cook a 15 lb butterball turkey? - Chef's Resource (2024)

How to Cook a 15 lb Butterball Turkey?

Cooking a 15 lb Butterball turkey can be a delightful and rewarding experience. With the right techniques and a bit of planning, you can achieve a juicy and flavorful turkey that will be the highlight of your Thanksgiving meal. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to cook a 15 lb Butterball turkey to perfection.

1. **Thawing the Turkey**: The first and most important step is to thaw the turkey. Place the frozen turkey in the refrigerator, allowing 24 hours of thawing time for every 4-5 pounds of turkey. A 15 lb turkey will take approximately 3-4 days to thaw fully.

2. **Preparing the Turkey**: Before cooking, remove the giblets and neck from the turkey cavity and rinse the turkey thoroughly inside and out with cold water. Pat it dry using paper towels.

3. **Seasoning the Turkey**: Liberally season the turkey with salt, pepper, and your desired herbs and spices. You can create a flavorful rub by combining herbs like rosemary, thyme, sage, and garlic powder.

4. **Preheating the Oven**: Preheat your oven to 325°F (165°C). Ensure the oven rack is positioned in the lower-third of your oven to allow even cooking.

5. **Using a Roasting Pan**: Place the seasoned turkey in a roasting pan with the breast side facing up. If desired, elevate the turkey on a roasting rack to allow heat circulation.

6. **Basting the Turkey**: While not necessary, basting the turkey every hour with pan juices or melted butter can add extra flavor and help keep the meat moist. Be cautious when opening the oven to avoid temperature fluctuations.

7. **Using a Meat Thermometer**: Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the turkey’s thigh without touching the bone. The turkey is safe to consume when the thermometer reads 165°F (74°C) for both the thigh and the stuffing.

8. **Cooking Time**: Turkeys typically cook around 13-15 minutes per pound. Therefore, a 15 lb turkey will take approximately 3-4 hours to cook. However, it’s crucial to rely on the meat thermometer for accurate cooking times.

9. **Taking Rest**: Once the turkey reaches the desired temperature, remove it from the oven and let it rest for about 15-20 minutes before carving. This allows the juices to distribute evenly throughout the meat.

10. **Carving the Turkey**: Begin carving by removing the legs, followed by the wings. Then, slice the breast meat against the grain into thin, even pieces. Serve and enjoy!

After covering the main steps, here are a few frequently asked questions about cooking a Butterball turkey:

Contents

  • 1 1. Can I cook a frozen Butterball turkey?
  • 2 2. What can I use to season the turkey stuffing?
  • 3 3. Should I cover the turkey with foil while cooking?
  • 4 4. Can I stuff the turkey?
  • 5 5. How often should I baste the turkey?
  • 6 6. Can I cook the turkey at a higher temperature to cook it faster?
  • 7 7. Do I need to use a roasting rack?
  • 8 8. How do I know when the turkey is done?
  • 9 9. Can I cook the turkey on a grill?
  • 10 10. Can I let the turkey rest for longer than 20 minutes?
  • 11 11. Can I cook a Butterball turkey breast-side-down?
  • 12 12. Can I use a convection oven to cook the turkey?

1. Can I cook a frozen Butterball turkey?

It is essential to thaw the turkey fully before cooking for safe and even cooking.

2. What can I use to season the turkey stuffing?

Season the stuffing with herbs and spices such as sage, rosemary, thyme, or poultry seasoning, along with onions, celery, and bread cubes.

3. Should I cover the turkey with foil while cooking?

Covering the turkey with foil during the first half of cooking helps prevent the skin from browning too quickly and drying out.

4. Can I stuff the turkey?

Yes, you can stuff the turkey. Ensure the stuffing reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).

5. How often should I baste the turkey?

Basting the turkey every hour adds flavor and keeps the meat moist. However, frequent oven door openings can affect cooking time, so it’s not strictly necessary.

6. Can I cook the turkey at a higher temperature to cook it faster?

It’s recommended to cook the turkey at a lower temperature (325°F) for even cooking. Cooking at a higher temperature can result in unevenly cooked meat.

7. Do I need to use a roasting rack?

While not essential, using a roasting rack elevates the turkey, allowing hot air to circulate around it for even cooking.

8. How do I know when the turkey is done?

Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. The turkey should reach 165°F (74°C) in the thigh and stuffing.

9. Can I cook the turkey on a grill?

Yes, you can cook a Butterball turkey on a grill using indirect heat. Follow the same temperature guidelines and use a meat thermometer for accuracy.

10. Can I let the turkey rest for longer than 20 minutes?

Yes, you can extend the resting time up to 30 minutes without affecting the overall quality of the turkey.

11. Can I cook a Butterball turkey breast-side-down?

It’s generally recommended to cook the turkey breast-side-up to allow the breast meat to self-baste. However, some cooks prefer cooking breast-side-down for a juicier breast.

12. Can I use a convection oven to cook the turkey?

Yes, you can use a convection oven to cook the turkey. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and adjust cooking times accordingly.

How to cook a 15 lb butterball turkey? - Chef's Resource (2024)

FAQs

How long to cook a 15 lb turkey butterball? ›

Regular Oven 325°
WeightCook Time (Unstuffed)Cook Time (Stuffed)
7-10 lbs.2½-3 hrs.2¾-3½ hrs.
10-18 lbs.3-3½ hrs.3¾-4½ hrs.
18-22 lbs.3½-4 hrs.4½-5 hrs.
22-24 lbs.4-4½ hrs.5-5½ hrs.
2 more rows

Do you cook a turkey covered or uncovered butterball? ›

Place turkey in pre-heated oven and heat until hot (140° F). Cover pan completely with foil for the entire cooking time. Cover breast loosely with foil after 1 to 1 1/4 hours to prevent over-browning and drying. Begin checking the turkey for doneness about 30 minutes before the recommended cook time.

How many hours do you cook a 15 pound turkey? ›

How Long to Cook a Turkey
Turkey WeightServingsCooking Time
10 to 12 lb6 to 82 1/4 to 2 3/4 hours
12 to 14 lb8 to 102 3/4 to 3 hours
15 to 18 lb10 to 123 1/4 to 4 hours
18 to 20 lb12 to 144 to 4 1/4 hours
2 more rows
Sep 26, 2023

Is it better to cook a turkey at 325 or 350? ›

Oven-Roasted Turkey

We recommend starting the turkey in a 425 degree oven for 30-45 minutes before tenting the pan with foil and lowering the temperature to 350 degrees until a meat thermometer reads 165 degrees when inserted into the thickest part of the bird.

Do you cook a butterball turkey at 325 or 350? ›

Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Place roasting rack or foil ring on pan, and place turkey on top. In a small bowl, combine butter, garlic, salt, thyme, and parsley.

What is the best temperature to cook a 15lb turkey? ›

Calculate turkey cooking time and temperature. The simplest way to figure out turkey roasting times is to calculate 13 minutes per pound at 350°F for an unstuffed turkey (that's about 3 hours for a 12- to 14-lb. turkey), or 15 minutes per pound for a stuffed turkey.

Do you put water in the bottom of the roasting pan for turkey? ›

"Often, consumers will inquire about adding water to the bottom of their roasting pans. We do not recommend adding water to the bottom of the pan. Cooking a turkey with steam is a moist heat-cook method and is acceptable, sure, but is not the preferred method for cooking your turkey."

What is the most common way to cook a turkey according to Butterball? ›

Roasting is the most common way to cook a turkey. Follow our tips and tricks to create a delicious roast! Grilling is a great way to bring friends together. Add a Butterball® turkey, and your next outdoor gathering will become a memorable feast.

Should I baste a Butterball turkey? ›

Butterball Cook from Frozen Premium Whole Turkeys do not need to be basted, brined or seasoned; they are ready to roast straight from the packaging and result in a tasty and tender Thanksgiving turkey.

How many people will a 15 lb turkey feed? ›

You'll want to plan on about 1.25 pounds of turkey per person. That means if you're expecting 12 guests, plan for a 15-pound bird. To make things simple, we've created a guide to help you pick the perfect-sized turkey for your Thanksgiving dinner menu.

How often should you baste a 15-pound turkey? ›

Basting a turkey every 30 to 45 minutes is standard, especially if you wait until the last hour or so of cooking to begin basting. Remember that basting too often can greatly increase the turkey's cook time, so don't baste anymore often than every 30 minutes. When you do baste the bird, be sure to work quickly.

How long does it take to cook a 15 lb turkey at 325? ›

How Long Do You Cook a 15-Pound Turkey at 325 Degrees? An unstuffed bird of 15 pounds will likely finish at around the 4-hour mark (or just before). A stuffed turkey will take at least 4 hours to cook, and typically takes an extra 15 minutes until you've hit that desired internal temperature.

Should I cover turkey with foil? ›

To achieve a perfectly golden, juicy turkey, let the bird spend time both covered and uncovered in the oven. We recommend covering your bird for most of the cooking time to prevent it from drying out; then, during the last 30 minutes or so of cooking, remove the cover so the skin crisps in the hot oven.

How long do you cook a 15 pound turkey at 350 degrees? ›

How long to cook a turkey at 350°:
  1. 8–12 lb. turkey: 1¾–3 hours.
  2. 12–14 lb. turkey: 3–3¼ hours.
  3. 15–16 lb. turkey: 3½–3¾ hours.
  4. 18–20 lb. turkey: 4–4¼ hours.
  5. 21–22 lb. turkey: 4½–4¾ hours.
Oct 25, 2023

How long to cook a 14 lb unstuffed turkey at 325? ›

How Long To Cook A Turkey: A Pound-By-Pound Guide
How Long To Cook Your Turkey
Turkey SizeUnstuffed Cooking Time
8 - 12 pounds2 hours, 45 minutes - 3 hours
12 - 14 pounds3 hours - 3 hours, 45 minutes
14 - 18 pounds3 hours, 45 minutes - 4 hours, 15 minutes
2 more rows
Oct 20, 2023

How long does it take to cook a 15 lb turkey at 350 in the oven? ›

The simplest way to roast a whole turkey: The most straightforward approach is to roast an unstuffed turkey, breast-side up, for 13 minutes per pound of turkey at 350°.

How long to cook a 15 lb unstuffed turkey at 325? ›

An unstuffed 15-pound turkey will take about 3 ¾ hours at the recommended oven temperature of 325°F. If the turkey is stuffed, add an extra 20 to 30 minutes. How Long to Cook 18 lb Turkey? An unstuffed 18-pound turkey will take about 4 ¼ hours at the recommended oven temperature of 325°F.

How long to cook a 15 lb turkey at 350 in the oven? ›

For whole, unstuffed turkeys in oven cooking bags, cook at 350 °F for the following approximate times:
  1. 8-12 lb turkey: 1 1/2 to 2 hours;
  2. 12 to 16 lb turkey: 2 to 2 1/2 hours;
  3. 16-20 lb turkey: 2 1/2 to 3 hours;
  4. 20-24 lb turkey: 3 to 3 1/2 hours.
Apr 5, 2024

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