SOLVED W/PICS--->HELP! My slaughtered turkey weighs 45-50lbs, how do I cook it? Time? Temp? Etc?


6 Years
Apr 3, 2015
OMG this thing is HUGE. Guess we went past the 18 week mark by a few months. I also let him free eat so he and his partner ate 50lbs per week. They were eating machines!


I cannot find any info on extra large birds and cooking times. I am guessing 325f for 9-10 hours. I also made the mistake of bringing it for 4 days. I forgot about it when we had a massive wind storm and loss of power (its cold here so turkey is OK). Should I soak it in fresh water overnight to pull some of the salt out?


On edit......

The bird turned out AWESOME!!!!! Best turkey I have ever eaten. We fed all the folks and had 15-20lbs left over. Brine was awesome and it cooked in 6.5hrs.

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Rule of thumb is about 15 minutes per pound at 325 degrees. You may be looking at 11-12 hours, maybe less.

Definitely cover with foil during most of the roasting time to reduce dryness and pull off the last 1/2 to 1 hour to allow it to brown up. Make sure you have a meat thermometer in good working order so you can ensure proper and safe temp. I usually do the leg test (pull leg and check the juices) when the juices are running clear and/or it pops out of the joint almost effortlessly then it's done. I also inject butter or olive oil under the skin of the breast (don't puncture the meat) so it stays moist during cooking. You can baste every 20 minutes if you want but I've never been successful with that.

That's how I handle a big bird and still have it come out tender and juicy and completely cooked through. Oh, and do not stuff a bird that size or you will not get it safely cooked on the inside.

Best of luck
To get the brine out should I soak for 8 hours in fresh water? I rinsed it just now. I have it soaking in fresh water.
Couple of issues with doing it that way.

1.) I have 25 people waiting to eat the bird, so if anything goes wrong its a disaster!!!!
2.) I live in North Idaho and the ground is frozen.
3.) The night temps are single digit 9f.
4.) No experimenting with a bird I raised and people are waiting to eat.

Maybe later during the summer I can try that with another store bought gmo bird.

Man, 25 people. That's a lot of pressure!
Frozen ground does pose a bit of a problem.
Can you really fit a 50 lb turkey in your oven?

No matter what you do, it's going to take many hours.
To get the brine out should I soak for 8 hours in fresh water? I rinsed it just now. I have it soaking in fresh water.
@IdahoPrepper Sorry so late I got pretty busy. Just rinse it well - don't soak. You just want to get rid of excess salt but it's not necessary to remove all of it. If you can inject butter or olive oil under the skin over the breast and cover with foil that will help keep it from drying out while roasting.
I'm really late to the party, but I would have pieced it out and cooked the parts separately, just to make sure that it cooks evenly.
A breast off a 50 pound turkey must be HUGE!
I have put stuffing in a baking dish and place the breasts on top of it and baked it that way to get that "Baked in the turkey" flavor to the stuffing.

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