Which Side Of Turkey Is Breast Side Up?

The United States Department of Agriculture advises to cook a whole turkey breast side up during the entire cooking time. Turning over a large, hot bird can be dangerous and it’s very easy to tear the skin, making the finished product less attractive.

Why you should not cook your turkey upside down

Your oven is probably set between 375°F and 400°F when roasting a turkey. This implies that a hot upside-down turkey, probably weighing around 12 lbs, is being held up by a hot roasting rack inside a hot roasting pan.

Could there be a safe, simple way to turn your turkey right side up? The answer is no. Do you grab a wooden spoon and a stack of paper towels when you’re ready to flip it? Do you cover your oven mitts in foil?

It is safe to say that cooking a turkey upside down will present challenges when you attempt to flip it back up, running the risk of splattering hot turkey fat all over yourself or causing a burn to your hand on the roasting rack.

Prep the Turkey for Cooking

Rinse the bird thoroughly inside and out if you chose a dry brine to get rid of extra seasoning. Pat the bird nice and dry with paper towels.

If you didn’t dry brine the bird, now is the time to salt and pepper it inside and out. Important: If you used a dry brine, there’s no need to season the turkey again; it already has enough seasoning!

To prevent them from getting in the way when you flip the turkey, tuck the wings under it and tie the drumsticks together with kitchen twine. Tying the bird also helps the meat cook evenly. Give the prepared bird an hour to stand at room temperature.

How to Cook a Turkey Upside Down

For the best flavor throughout and extra-moist meat, we prefer to start with a dry brine, but you can also choose to season the meat with salt and pepper just before cooking.

Combining salt and pepper to make the simplest dry brine, rub the mixture all over the bird, including the body cavity, cover, and chill for up to 24 hours in advance to let the seasoning penetrate the meat.

Plan ahead and allow four days for a 14-pound frozen turkey to thaw in the refrigerator if you’re using that. When people learn that the turkey is still frozen for Thanksgiving, they don’t want to postpone the meal.

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