2-hour turkey, really.

★★★★★ 80 Reviews
Torrey avatar
By Torrey Moseley
from Dallas, TX

I ran across this recipe a few years back from my local grocery store. I was VERY skeptical that one could actually cook an entire turkey (regardless of size) in about 2 hours and have it be edible. Well, not only does this actually work, it produces the BEST roasted turkey I've had to date. NO MORE GETTING UP AT 4 a.m. to start the holiday turkey, NO MORE BASTING. It's so incredibly fast and easy. It has become the only way I roast turkeys. Turkey...it's not JUST for holidays, anymore. The biggest turkey I made this way was 22.5 pounds. It took about 2 hours 15 minutes to cook. WOW.

Blue Ribbon Recipe

The flavor is all that you would expect from a well-cooked Thanksgiving turkey, but the technique is so wonderfully different! The trick is roasting it on high heat and having the turkey wide open. A great time-saver on a holiday when the stove gets a workout. If you find the oven smoking, definitely follow the tip of keeping an inch of water in the pan. The one drawback with this method is you won't have the yummy drippings for gravy as you do from a slow-roasted turkey.

— The Test Kitchen @kitchencrew
★★★★★ 80 Reviews
prep time 10 Min
cook time 2 Hr
method Bake

Ingredients For 2-hour turkey, really.

  • 1
    thawed, whole turkey (from 10 - 24 pounds)
  • 2 Tbsp
    olive oil, extra virgin
  • 1 to 3 tsp
    coarsely ground salt (Kosher or sea)
  • freshly ground pepper

How To Make 2-hour turkey, really.

  • Clean oven set to preheat to 475 degrees.
    1
    PREHEAT OVEN TO 475 degrees F (240-250 degrees C). This is what you'll roast it at for the ENTIRE time. Since this employs the use of a VERY hot oven, make sure your oven is CLEAN before you start, AND put about 1 inch of water in the bottom of the roasting pan to reduce the risk of smoking your family out of the house. NOTE: Even WITH a pristine oven, I still smoked out my house last Thanksgiving... so a tip to cut down on the smoke issue is to add about an inch of water (or broth) to the roaster pan...and keep replenishing it as needed. By doing this, not only was the smoking problem eliminated, but I had terrific drippings for gravy! Place oven rack on LOWEST or SECOND-TO-LOWEST position in oven. The lowest position may be too hot in some ovens since it's directly above the heating elements.
  • Rinsing and prepping the turkey.
    2
    Remove all giblets, neck, pop-up thermometer (if there is one), and any trussing (like the plastic thing that holds the legs together). Rinse turkey THOROUGHLY, inside and out with cool water, letting all water drain out of neck and body cavities. Pat dry, inside and out, with paper towels.
  • Rack placed in a roasting pan.
    3
    Place on V or U-shaped wire rack in roasting pan, so that turkey doesn't rest on the bottom of the pan. The first time I made this I didn't have a rack, so I just slapped it in my grandmother's old-fashioned blue-enamel roaster pan and it turned out FINE. If you don't have a rack...take a long piece of aluminum foil and wad it up into a long rope, then coil it in the bottom of the pan and rest your turkey on that. NOTE: I STRONGLY RECOMMEND KEEPING 1-2 INCHES OF WATER IN THE BOTTOM OF YOUR ROASTING PAN DURING COOKING. This will GREATLY reduce smoking (which can be brutal). The first year I made this, I didn't put water in the bottom of the pan...and I smoked out my house. The turkey was fabulous, but the house was SO smoky.
  • Turkey rubbed in oil and seasoned.
    4
    Rub the entire outside of dried-off turkey with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. I use Kosher salt because it has large, coarse grains.
  • Tucking the wings.
    5
    Pull wing tips AWAY from the body, twist them and tuck them, backward, under the bird... up by its neck.
  • Covering drumsticks in foil.
    6
    Using aluminum foil, form caps over the end of each drumstick. If any parts of the turkey extend beyond the pan rim, make a foil "collar" underneath to make sure drippings flow back into the pan. Do NOT tie legs together, do NOT add stuffing, do NOT close body cavity. It's probably okay to put a little seasoning in the cavity (herbs, lemon, onion) but don't fill up the cavity.
  • Adding water to the bottom of the roasting pan.
    7
    Pour 2 inches of water into the bottom of the pan.
  • Turkey in a roasting pan in the oven.
    8
    Bake on the 2nd to lowest rack in the oven.
  • Rotating the turkey while roasting.
    9
    Halfway through cooking time, turn the roasting pan around 180 degrees to ensure even cooking. Do NOT flip the bird over.
  • Roasting the turkey until 160 degrees.
    10
    It's done when the internal temp (in the thickest part of BOTH the THIGH and BREAST is 160 degrees. Make certain they are BOTH at temp. Sometimes the thighs take a bit longer. When done, remove from the oven. Approximate Cooking Timing: 10-13 lbs. = 50 minutes to 1 1/4 hrs. 13-16 lbs. = 1 1/4 hrs to 1 hour 50 minutes. 16-19 lbs. = 1 1/2 hrs to 2 hrs. 19-22 lbs. = 1 3/4 hrs to 2 1/4 hrs. 22-24 lbs. = 2 hrs to 2 1/2 hrs. 25+ lbs. = 2 1/4 to 2 3/4 hrs...or a bit more depending on how humongous it is. Are you sure it's not an ostrich you're roasting? If not, call the Guinness Book of Records.
  • Turkey covered in foil and resting.
    11
    Cover completely with foil and let rest 30-45 minutes before carving. The internal temp will continue to rise to the recommended 165 degrees. After resting, transfer to a platter for carving. NOTE: There will likely be a lot of juices in the cavity. Drain them before transferring the bird to a platter. Save the juices to make gravy or moisten dressing.
  • https://youtu.be/Thx8qtu4NMo
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