Holiday Cooking


Turkey is one of our basic holiday foods and it’s important to handle and cook turkey safely to avoid any illness. Here are a few helpful tips.

Thawing a Turkey 

  • Never thaw a turkey at room temperature.
  • Leave it in the original plastic package.
  • Place turkey on a tray on the bottom shelf  in the fridge, allowing 5 hours per pound defrost time OR
    Place turkey in a large container, cover turkey completely with cold water, change water every hour, allowing 1 hour per pound defrosting time.

Handling a Turkey 

  • Always wash your hands thoroughly in hot soapy water before and after handling the raw meat.
  • Do not let raw meat juices come in contact with ready to eat foods in the fridge or during preparation.
  • Do not put cooked foods on the same plate that held the raw meat.

Cooking a Turkey

  • Roast turkey (unstuffed) for about 20 minutes per pound at 325°F (160°C) until the inside temperature of the turkey reaches 180°F(82°C).
  • Insert an oven-safe probe thermometer into the thickest part of the meat (breast or thigh) to check the temperature – do not touch bone.

Cooling and Storing Turkey Leftovers

  • Do not leave cooked turkey at room temperature for more than 2 hours.
  • Refrigerate or freeze all leftovers within two hours.
  • Make sure the refrigerator is set at a temperature of 4°C (40°F) or lower, and keep the freezer at minus 18°C (0°F) or lower. 
  • Cooked turkey may be stored in a covered container or aluminium foil for up to 4 days in a fridge, or up to 3 months in a freezer.

 Stay Safe and enjoy your turkey!




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Registered Nurse --- Vaccine Preventable Diseases

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