2-Hour Oven Roasted Turkey

Recipe Rating:
 2 Ratings
Serves: a bunch!
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Cooking Method: Bake


1 16 to 18 pound turkey, thawed and don't forget to remove giblets
olive oil
favorite herbs

The Cook

Diane Hopson Smith Recipe
Well Seasoned
Pine Mountain, GA (pop. 1,304)
Member Since Aug 2011
Diane Hopson's notes for this recipe:
Why spend most of your time in the kitchen roasting a turkey when you can do it in 2 hours. And, end up not only with a very moist turkey but more time to spend with your family!

A friend and former co-worker shared this recipe with me several years ago. If we don't smoke a turkey this is the only way to prepare it!

Give this a try, you won't be disappointed!
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You will be baking at a very high temperature, there’s no room for error, so, make sure your oven is clean or it will smoke up the house. Also, the oven must register accurate temperatures. If you are uncertain about this, test your oven with an oven thermometer.

Do NOT bake any side dishes in oven while turkey is roasting.

Roasting Pan with Rack (big enough for turkey)

You will need a meat thermometer: the kind you leave in during baking (not an instant-read).
Thaw turkey in the fridge breast side down. NOTE: this could take a couple of days. Remove 30 minutes prior to roasting and turn breast side up.

NOTE Do NOT rush the thawing process by trying to thaw on the counter. This is not safe!
Remove giblets and anything in the cavity of the turkey; set aside for making giblet gravy and/or stock.

Cut off any excess fat around the body cavity. There's always a big hunk right at the main cavity entrance. Discard it.
Rinse off the turkey and dry inside and out with paper towels. It must be dry as you are going to oil the skin. Oil the turkey on all sides (oil will help keep moisture in), place breast-up and prop the vent open with an eating fork. The fork will stay in the turkey during roasting. Do not tie the legs together and do not stuff. You want the heat to circulate.

NOTE: If you do not have Olive Oil, use some other kind of oil, do not use butter, it tends to burn.
Preheat oven to 475 degrees.
Place breast-up on an oiled rack and place inside roasting pan. Do not salt (salt draws out moisture), however, you may pat herbs and pepper on the oiled skin or place in cavity. Insert meat thermometer at the breast bone. Push all the way until it touches the breast bone. It should not touch any part of the pan or the inside of the oven.

NOTE: Optional: Spray pan and rack with PAM. Line with aluminum foil and spray the foil as well. This will make for a much easier clean up.
Lay a greased sheet of aluminum foil loosely on top of the turkey; do not tuck or wrap; just let it lie on top.
Pour 3/4-inch of water or stock into bottom of roasting pan. This should not touch the turkey, adjust rack if necessary. Check that ¾" of liquid remains in the bottom of the pan throughout roasting. Do not baste and open the oven as SELDOM as possible.
Roast turkey for 2 hours (16- to 18-pound bird). Remove from oven when the thermometer reads 160°. NOTE: For a larger turkey, you may need some more time. Watch thermometer.
Let turkey rest for 10 to 20 minutes before carving. NOTE: if meat at leg/thigh joint seems excessively red, return this portion to oven while craving the rest.

About this Recipe


1-5 of 19 comments

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user Diane Hopson Smith DeeDee2011 - Nov 22, 2011
Diane Smith [DeeDee2011] has shared this recipe with discussion group:
Giveaway! ($50 Grocery Gift Card)
user Bonnie D. Utahn - Nov 23, 2011
I have never heard of this method, Diane! Very interesting!
user Diane Hopson Smith DeeDee2011 - Nov 23, 2011
It works and the turkey meat is moist.
user Carol Junkins CarolAJ - Nov 23, 2011
Sounds great and great directions ! Will try at some point, hubby won't let me try tomorrow, to risky for him, hahha men

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