Overnight Turkey Recipe

25 servings
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 hours
Total Time 10 hours 30 minutes

Easy Overnight Turkey with easy gravy is crispy and golden brown on the outside, moist and juicy on the inside, and no basting is needed!

The Overnight Turkey Recipe, a hallmark of American cuisine, is celebrated for its comforting flavors and often features as the centerpiece in family and holiday gatherings. A holiday classic, most people are used to the Traditional Roast Turkey Recipe. Along with other easy Holiday Recipes you can make in your slow cooker, you could put the recipes together the night before and wake up to a fully prepared feast without any of the extra work! Plus, this recipe is perfect for those of you who like to serve Thanksgiving lunch!

Flavor-wise, Overnight Roasted Turkey is a medley of savory and aromatic tones, thanks to a blend of garlic, rosemary, and sage. The low-temperature overnight roasting not only infuses deep flavors but also ensures a moist, tender outcome, making it perfect for family meals and larger gatherings. While it’s synonymous with Thanksgiving and Christmas, its simplicity and appealing taste have made it a year-round favorite for both formal and casual dining.

Overnight Turkey vs. Classic Turkey

A typical roasting temperature is around 325º F for 4 to 5 hours depending on the size of the turkey.  

As the turkey slowly roasts at around 200º F for almost 10 hours, the lower temperature and moisture are basting your turkey while you sleep. No need to baste the turkey! So easy!

Video: How to Make Overnight Turkey

How to Cook a Turkey Overnight

Sabrina’s Overnight Turkey Recipe

This Overnight Turkey Recipe is a contemporary twist on the traditional Holiday turkey. Originating from the festive feasts of early America, this dish is a staple of Thanksgiving, symbolizing prosperity. While variations exist, such as brining or deep-frying, this recipe sticks to simplicity, focusing on the natural flavors of the turkey, seasoned with herbs like rosemary and sage. It’s versatile and suitable for both grand celebrations and casual family dinners.

This version of the turkey recipe stands out for its straightforward overnight roasting method, appealing to cooks of all skill levels. Avoiding the need for constant basting, it delivers a moist and delicious bird with minimal effort. 


  • 14-16 pounds Whole Turkey: The centerpiece of the dish, a whole turkey provides a substantial amount of meat that’s ideal for feeding a large group.
  • ½ cup Unsalted Butter: Butter adds richness and helps to brown the skin of the turkey. 
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher Salt: Kosher salt is ideal for seasoning the turkey evenly without being overpowering. It also helps in retaining moisture within the meat. 
  • 1 teaspoon Coarse Ground Black Pepper: Adds a mild heat and depth to the flavor profile. Coarse-ground pepper provides a more pronounced flavor than finely ground pepper. 
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder: Garlic powder offers a concentrated flavor that infuses the turkey with a subtle garlicky aroma and taste. Substitution: Minced fresh garlic can be used, but keep in mind it will have a more pungent flavor.
  • 1 teaspoon Dried Rosemary: Rosemary provides a woody, citrusy aroma, complementing the turkey’s savory flavors. Dried herbs are more potent than fresh, so they work well in a slow-cooked dish. Substitution: Fresh rosemary can be used; triple the amount since fresh herbs are less concentrated.
  • 1 teaspoon Dried Sage: Sage brings a slightly peppery, earthy note, traditional in poultry seasoning. Like rosemary, its dried form is more concentrated, ideal for slow cooking. Substitution: Fresh sage can be substituted in a 3:1 ratio.
  • 32 ounces Chicken Broth: Adds moisture to the turkey during the cooking process and forms the base for the gravy. The broth’s savory flavor complements the turkey’s richness. Substitution: Vegetable broth can be used for a lighter flavor profile.

Kitchen Tools & Equipment

  1. Roasting Pan with Rack: A large roasting pan fitted with a rack is essential for cooking the turkey. The rack elevates the turkey, allowing heat to circulate evenly. A pan approximately 16 x 13 inches or larger is recommended, depending on the size of the turkey.
  2. Meat Thermometer: Crucial for ensuring the turkey reaches the safe internal temperature of 160°F before the final browning stage. 
  3. Aluminum Foil: Used to tent the turkey during the initial long, slow cooking process to prevent excessive browning. 
  4. Medium Bowl: Needed for mixing the butter, salt, pepper, garlic powder, rosemary, and sage. Any standard kitchen bowl will suffice.
  5. Paper Towels: For drying the turkey inside and out before applying the herb-butter mixture. 
  6. Kitchen Utensils (Spatula, Spoon, or Brush): To apply and spread the butter mixture evenly over the turkey. Substitution: Clean hands can be just as effective for rubbing the mixture onto the turkey.

How to Roast an Overnight Turkey

Time needed: 10 hours.

  1. Preheat Oven

    Set to 180 degrees (or 200 degrees if that’s the minimum).making herb butter for Overnight Turkey

  2. Dry and Butter the Turkey

    Thoroughly dry a 14-16 pound thawed turkey, then rub it with the herb butter.

  3. Set in Pan and Add Broth

    Place the turkey breast side up in a roasting pan, pour 32 ounces of chicken broth into the pan.

  4. Tent with Foil and Roast

    Cover with foil, cook for 9 hours.covering turkey with tinfoil for Overnight Turkey

  5. Check and Crisp

    After 9 hours, check internal temperature for 160 degrees. Then, increase oven to 450 degrees, remove foil, and roast for another 15-20 minutes for a crispy skin.crisping turkey for Overnight Turkey

  6. Rest and Serve

    Let the turkey rest for 30 minutes before carving. Enjoy your succulent and flavorful turkey!cutting turkey for Overnight Turkey

Nutritional Facts

Nutrition Facts
Overnight Turkey Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 292 Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value*
Fat 8g12%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Cholesterol 147mg49%
Sodium 936mg41%
Potassium 645mg18%
Carbohydrates 1g0%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 55g110%
Vitamin A 164IU3%
Vitamin C 3mg4%
Calcium 39mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Tips & Tricks

  • Ensure Complete Thawing: Start with a completely thawed turkey to ensure even cooking. A partially frozen turkey can cook unevenly, resulting in some parts being overcooked while others remain undercooked. Thaw the turkey in cold water in the refrigerator for several days prior to cooking, allocating about 24 hours for every 4-5 pounds of turkey.
  • Crispy Skin Trick: For a juicy turkey with extra crispy skin, brush or spray a little oil over the turkey skin before increasing the oven temperature for the final browning phase.
  • Avoid Opening the Oven Too Often: This causes temperature fluctuations that can lead to uneven cooking. When needed, keep the oven door opening to a minimum.

Storing Leftover Turkey

To keep leftover Overnight Turkey fresh, carve and store the meat in airtight containers in the fridge within two hours of cooking. Adding a bit of chicken broth can help maintain moisture. Consume within three to four days for best flavor.

Reheating Overnight Turkey

For reheating, warm the turkey in a 325°F oven, covered with foil and a splash of broth to prevent drying. Heat until the internal temperature reaches 165°F, ensuring the turkey stays juicy and flavorful. Reheating time will be about 30 minutes if the bird has not been carved. Check internal temp with a thermometer. 

Freezing Overnight Turkey

To freeze, wrap carved turkey pieces tightly in freezer-safe materials and store in airtight containers. It can be kept frozen for up to 4 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight to preserve taste and texture for later enjoyment.

Cooking Turkey Overnight in large pan

Stuffing for Overnight Turkey

It is not recommended to stuff a slow-cooked turkey. Grandma’s favorite stuffing recipe (normally cooked in the cavity of the turkey) will be a flop because the low temperature and moisture overnight will make it a soggy mess.

Stuffing is best cooked separately at all times for food safety reasons. By the time the liquid from the turkey (that the stuffing has absorbed) reaches a food-safe temperature, the white meat of the turkey will be overcooked. It is always best to cook them separately.

This Thanksgiving be kind to yourself. Plan for Thanksgiving dinner to be around Noon.  Both the Overnight Turkey and the Slow Cooker Stuffing will be hot and ready to enjoy.

Gravy for Overnight Turkey

This recipe calls for 32 oz. of broth to roast your Thanksgiving Turkey in all night long.  Cooked low and slow, the turkey juices will be full and rich with flavor.

This year’s gravy might just be the best gravy you’ve ever had.  Here’s a tried and true recipe tested for years for you to use.

  • Pour the liquid left behind in the roasting pan into a measuring cup and remove as much of the fat (reserve two tablespoons) as you can.
  • Add two tablespoons of your turkey fat into a saucepan on medium-high heat and combine with 2 tablespoons of flour.
  • Whisk and let cook on medium for a minute to cook out the raw flour taste.
  • Add in the rest of the turkey broth and let it cook until thickened approximately 3 – 5 minutes.
  • Season to taste.

Alternative Size & Cooking Times

25-pound Turkey Cooking Time 

Under normal circumstances, expect the cooking time of a thawed 25-pound turkey to be the same as the 15-pound turkey as this is slow-cooked. 

10-12 pound Turkey Cooking Time

At 180°F (82°C), the cooking time will naturally be shorter than that of a larger turkey. Estimate around 5 go 6 hours for an unstuffed turkey of this size, but always verify the internal temperature with a meat thermometer for food safety.

Cooking Two 10-12 pound Turkeys

When cooking two 10-12 pound turkeys simultaneously at 180°F (82°C), the cooking time will be the same as the recipe instructions here. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What other seasonings can I use for Overnight Turkey?

If you’re in a pinch and don’t have the seasonings called for in this recipe, you can swap 1 tbsp of poultry seasoning for 2 tsp sage and 1 tsp either dried thyme or marjoram.

What if I don’t have enough chicken broth for this recipe?

You’ve been to the store so many times already and you don’t want to run back for chicken broth? No worries, if you have 1 bouillon cube or 1 teaspoon of instant bouillon granules, pour into 1 cup of water, and Voila! you have 1 cup broth. You’ll need 4 cups of broth to cook a 14 – 16 lb bird.

Should I put anything in the turkey cavity while cooking?

Some place a celery stalk, small onion, and a small peeled carrot in the cavity of the turkey while cooking to add flavor. But, unless cooking potatoes, we recommend avoiding this as the vegetables tend to become too soggy for enjoyment. 

Overnight Turkey on plate with stuffing and gravy

Overnight Turkey Recipe

Easy Overnight Turkey with easy gravy is crispy and golden brown on the outside, moist and juicy on the inside, and no basting is needed!
Yield 25 servings
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 hours
Total Time 10 hours 30 minutes
Course Main
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 14-16 pounds turkey , thawed
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter , softened
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 32 ounces chicken broth


  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees. (If your oven has a minimum temperature of 200 degrees, set it to 200, but the turkey will likely be done sooner, so use a meat thermometer).
  • In a medium bowl, mash together the butter, salt, pepper, garlic powder, rosemary and sage.
  • Dry your turkey well inside and out with paper towels, then rub the butter mixture all over the outside of the turkey.
  • Put the turkey on a rack in a roasting pan breast side up then pour the chicken broth into the bottom of the pan.
  • Tent the roasting pan with aluminum foil but make sure the foil is not touching the turkey.
  • Cook the turkey for 9 hours.
  • Use a meat thermometer to check the turkey's internal temperature and make sure the thickest part of the turkey thigh is at 160 degrees.
  • Raise the oven temperature to 450 degrees, remove the foil tent and cook an additional 15-20 minutes until the skin is browned and crispy.
  • Remove the turkey from the oven and allow to rest for 30 minutes, with the foil loosely covering the turkey.



Calories: 292kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 55g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 147mg | Sodium: 936mg | Potassium: 645mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 164IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 39mg | Iron: 1mg
Keyword: Cook Overnight Turkey, Cooking a Turkey Overnight, Overnight Turkey

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Variations on Overnight Turkey

  • Herb Variations: Swap out rosemary and sage for other herbs like thyme, oregano, or tarragon for a different aromatic experience. Fresh herbs can also be used for a more subtle flavor.
  • Citrus Twist: Add lemon or orange zest to the herb butter for a refreshing citrus note. The acidity of the citrus balances the richness of the turkey.
  • Spicy Rub: Incorporate spices like smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, or a Cajun seasoning blend into the herb butter for a kick of heat.

More Interesting Turkey Recipes

Overnight Turkey Pin

Photos used in a previous version of this post.

Overnight Turkey Collage
How to Cook Turkey Overnight collage
Overnight Roasted Turkey with juicy turkey meat

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. Great recipe Sabrina. Followed it precisely with a 14 lb turkey for 9 hours. (Added oranges and onions in cavity) New oven (actual temp was 184) Internal temp after 9 hours- 140. Raised oven temp to 375 and cooked turkey for another hour without foil. Then the internal temps were around 185. Used the drippings to make gravy as suggested. Very good gravy. I’d say this was the juiciest turkey I’ve ever cooked. Will use this method again next year – but will probably cook at 200 instead next time. Thank you Sabrina for sharing this excellent turkey recipe. Glad I found it.

    1. You are so kind! Thank you so much for coming back to leave a review! I am going to be testing the recipe for 14, 16, 18, 20 and 22 pound turkeys before next Thanksgiving, so I’ll be ready to answer and help with more turkey questions. My original turkey was 16 pounds. Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Mine isn’t finished yet. It’s been on 180 for 12 hours and the internal temp is only reaching 140. Hopefully it’s done soon. It’s smells amazing!

  3. I cannot comment on how the turkey tastes, but it smells amazing. It has been cooking for 10 1/2 hours and the thigh still doesn’t reach 160 degrees. Hopefully it will be done soon.

  4. Good god. Enough with the crap on the screen. There’s a video that loads on top. (Using my Data!) There’s a flashing banner at the bottom. A border slides in from all four sides for an ad. Search button. Like button. Ads every second paragraph.

    I feel like I’m getting shaken down at the fairgrounds over and over instead of someone sharing something helpful.

    Unlikely to be back

    1. Hi Terry, I’m sorry the ads were so overwhelming. An ad company controls for them me so I don’t pick them out but because the recipes are all free it is the only source of income we have. I’m sorry to have lost you as a reader. Have a happy thanksgiving.

  5. Beware when using a small turkey. We have 11.66 lb turkey so I put it in as late as I could before bed (1:00 am). Slept in a bit and checked it at 8:22 am and the thigh was already at 172 and the breast was already over 180. We plan on eating around 1:00 or 2:00 pm, so for a small bird this could easily have been started early in the morning (5 or 6 am) then go back to bed for a bit. One disclaimer…..we used one of those traditional roasting pans (like ma and grandma used…..black oval pan with its own lid). Any comments on whether it makes a difference using one of these vs tented aluminum foil would be appreciated.

    1. UPDATE….Even though the small turkey was over cooked and sat for so long before lunch, it still turned out better than conventional cooking. It was only slightly dry and just before we sat down we carved the meat and drizzled some of the pan drippings on the breast meat and popped the platter in the oven to reheat. No one complained about dryness, and the flavor was delicious. My only concern was how long it sat on the counter in the roasting pan before lunch. We actually ate around 2:00 pm so it sat on the counter for about 5 and a half hours. No one is sick yet…LOL. In the end however, I will start this process early in the morning if ever cooking a smaller turkey. My guess is that the 11.66 lb turkey reached 160 degrees in the thigh in about 7 hours or less. Leftovers at around 8:00 pm were just as good!

      1. Glad it still turned out well and thank you so much for coming and letting me know how it turned out! I am so glad you had a good Thanksgiving dinner!

  6. After 10 hours you still couldn’t tell you were cooking a turkey, usually the house smells like turkey.
    Wasn’t sure what to do since I needed this turkey done by now so I turned up the oven and I’m hoping for the best.

    1. You should have a browned and delicious turkey. Have you taken the temperature of it? I would test the temperature before turning up the oven? How does it look?

    1. Hi Ray, I’ve only tested this for a 14-16 pound turkey but in the comments more people have experience with larger birds. Hope that helps! Next year I’ll have more weights tested. Happy thanksgiving!

  7. I do the exact same thing as Diane. It is the best turkey. I cook a 20 pound turkey and put on at midnight and eat at noon.

  8. This seems like a great idea and is currently in the works, but I have a concern.

    The “danger zone” for foodborne illness is 130f for about 4 hours if I am correct. Would this not be an issue at such a low temperature. The turkey is currently in the oven at 250 for the first few minutes to attempt to mitigate this issue to get past 130 and then I will drop it down to about 180-200 for the long cook.


    I love that you are making replying to comments on this!

    1. That’s a similar concern for people who use slow cookers. How do we ensure food safety with how long it may take that roast to come to temperature. When I tested the recipe I did it with a thermometer probe in it to watch the temps over time. I found it left the danger zone before 2 hours and stayed at a safe temperature throughout the cooking process. This depends on the fact that we are using a specific turkey size, any larger is not tested to be safe (which I mentioned too) and of course no stuffing which would be a food safety issue. I think if you try it with the right sized bird you’ll see it passes the timing test. Happy thanksgiving!

    1. No, the overnight recipe really does depend on the smaller size. I wouldn’t know the right timing/instructions to give to you to ensure it was safe to eat. I wish I could help more! Happy Thanksgiving!

      1. Hi,
        I have roasted a 20-22 pound Turkey overnight for the last 30 years. You take the normal cooking time for the size bird you are cooking and multiply it by 3. this will give you the correct time. Preheat oven to 350 and cook bird at that temperature for 1 hr then lower the temp to 180-200 degrees. Your bird will self base. If you stuff it the stuffing can be soggy. I also place the bird breast side down . I know this is not the conventional way to roast the Turkey. But it is the best way if you are roasting your bird all night. When the Turkey reaches the correct Temp you may leave it in the oven until you are ready to take it out to rest before carving. Good Morning Ce ?

        1. Thank you for this Diane! I will test out the theory next week with a few different sized birds so I can add that data (tested) to the post. I appreciate you! Happy Thanksgiving!

  9. I’m going to try this for my Thanksgiving this year. First time I tried a turkey it wasn’t done when it was supposed to be according to the directions! Hoping this one turns out great!

    1. As long as your turkey weighs in the right range you’ll be good to go! Do not use the method for larger turkeys though, it will be underdone. Happy thanksgiving! Hope your turkey is a hit!

      1. My bird weighs 12.22 pounds. Was thinking it would be done a little sooner so I’ll check internal temp after 8 hours. Sound right?

        1. I haven’t tested it at a smaller weight, but there are other commenters here who’ve been doing alternate weights for years who have a formula going. I think at 7-8 hours you’re good to go but I can’t say that with certainty as I haven’t tried it. Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. Regular oven temperature, no convection it will raise the effective temperature by 25 degrees. Happy Thanksgiving!

      1. As long as it’s large enough, sturdy enough and doesn’t leak I think you’ll be fine! Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. Hi Maryann! No, this recipe wouldn’t be the right one for you, it is only calibrated by the much smaller turkey and does not include stuffing in it (I have been certified as a food safety manager and the science on stuffing is not sound enough for me to create recipes on here with stuffing inside of turkey. I wish I had a timetable for an overnight cooking for you, but I don’t. Have you considered a standard cooking time on the turkey and pushing the stuffing to a slow cooker? I have quite a few stovetop/slow cooker options for sides on the site on the Thanksgiving Page. Without the stuffing you could cut down your cooking time on your bird significantly to 5 hours which means in at 10 out at 3? Happy Thanksgiving!

  10. I’m going to try this for Thanksgiving tomorrow but I’m confused. Someone below said it needs to cook between 10-20 hours. I’m cooking a 16 lb bird and plan to eat around 6:00 so I was going to put it in the oven at 6:00 a.m. Is that correct or will it take longer? Thank you!

    1. The whole turkey? What slow cooker do you use? Would love to try it. Or do you mean add stuffing to a turkey in the oven?

  11. So I figured with a 24 pound bird, cooking approximately 10-10 ½ hours would be sufficient with reading the comments the recipe then calls for 15-20 to crisp skin and half an hour to rest. So 11 ½-12 hours in entirety. At a noon dinner that’s still midnight.. I’m not sure how over night would be utilized. As 12 hours from 10pm is 10am and I’m not eating Thanksgiving breakfast ? so I gotta figure out the best line of attack.

  12. Sabrina,

    I’d like to say that I used some variation of your cooking last year. My turkey turned out awesome! I did not do an overnight bird, but I put it in early and low for a 5:00 dinner. My family was like, “You’ll never have dinner ready that early!” but I did. The turkey was awesome and flavorful. Great bird. Even though it was cooked low and slow, the rest time is still super important. I recommend 30 minutes just based on my 20-pound bird last year.

    I’ve got a 20-pound bird again for this year and will start the bird early in the day, planning for a 4:00 dinner (well, I’ll give my company a drink or two while the bird rests because 4:00 is way too early for me to eat lol).

    I do plan to add a rosemary/garlic butter under the skin because…why not? It’s Thanksgiving!

    One more thing! I LOVE the way that you still reply to the people who follow you or are reading your recipes. You are engaged, and that is so awesome in this day of being online and disconnected with face-to-face contact. So kudos to you for your passion and commitment!

      1. I haven’t tested a larger bird for overnight cooking so I couldn’t direct you and feel good about 1. not poisoning you and 2. not ruining. your holiday meal. I am so sorry I can’t help more. Happy Thanksgiving, I hope the recipe you decide on will be delicious!

  13. I will try this cooking method for the first time this thanksgiving.

    Since the turkey will take up most of my oven, and I still need to make sides. How do I reheat the turkey when it’s time to serve…without overcooking?

  14. So the turkey will be done a couple hours before time to eat. Which leaves time for dressing etc to be cooked. How do I reheat the turkey when it’s time to eat without it becoming dry?

    1. You can wrap the turkey in foil and place a kitchen towel over it to keep the meat warm and moist until it’s time to be carved and served. For another option, cover the bird with foil and return it to a low-temperature, 200F oven. Place a pan of water under the turkey to create steam, which contributes to moistness. Hope this helps!

    1. This recipe was written for a 14-16 pound turkey so you’ll be able to following the recipe card exactly (around 9 hours). Enjoy!

      1. You state 9 hours cooking time for 14 – 16 lbs. Is that the cooking time before uncovering for the additional browning, or the total time until final doneness ?

        1. Yes, that’s the cook time before raising the oven temp and removing the foil. Hope this helps clear up any confusion.

    1. You might need around 10 and a half hours for that big of a bird. Just make sure to use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. Enjoy!

    2. How can this turkey be reheated without over drying? If I cook it overnight, and then take out so I can cook the rest of my meal…please advise how to re-warm

      1. To reheat the turkey, put the meat back in a roasting pan, pour a bit of chicken stock over the turkey to keep it moist, and cover. Bake in a 325ºF oven alongside side dishes for about 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the bird.

        1. To reheat the turkey so that it doesn’t dry out heat up the broth that you are going to pour over the turkey make it real hot and let it set in the hot juice no need to put in the oven,,,just keep your gravy good and hot…and your ready to serve hot turkey

  15. Hello – If my Turkey is 20 pounds, and I slow cook it like you mentioned how much longer beyond the 10 hours would I need to cook it? The recipe you posted is only for a 15 pound Turkey. Please Help!


    Thank You

  16. This sounds delicious, I’m going to try this year! Do you rub the butter just outside or under the skin too? Is 10
    Hours pretty accurate? I have a 15lb bird.

    1. I only rub the butter mixture on the outside of the turkey. I’d check it with a meat thermometer around the 9 hour mark and go from there. Good luck!

  17. I love the simplicity of this recipe! I am cooking a mini thanksgiving this weekend for my daughter and our immediate family as she will be leaving for bootcamp and not be able to attend big Thanksgiving this year. I’m wondering what kind of timing you would use for a slightly smaller Turkey? Mine is 10.5 lbs. Thanks so much in advance!

    1. That’s so wonderful for you to get the chance to celebrate early! I haven’t tested it using that small of a bird before and usually don’t recommend this method due to the fact that they can tend to dry out because they don’t need as long to roast as a bigger bird. If you decide to try, it will take less time and you need to make sure to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature as to not overcook it. Good luck!

  18. I’ve cooked turkey overnite for years. Adelle Davis, a nutritionist said just rinse it & put it in a roasting pan at 300 degrees for 1 hour to kill any bacteria & then turn to oven to temperature indicated on a meat thermometer[180-195]. Season if desired, do not cover. Can leave overnite or up to 20-25 hours. Crispy on outside, moist inside

  19. P.s. the in-laws were able to taste from a distance as my husband delivered them each a meal!

  20. WOW!! I seriously cannot express this enough!!! I NEVER cooked a turkey in my life and she isn’t lying when she said that you really don’t have to look through millions of recipes and try several times to get your turkey right——because you can just use this one!!! I am a mom of two and recently had to teach myself to cook and when we had to spend easter without everyone else i had to think quickly for a fulfilling meal for my little family. I made my turkey with this recipe, only i used bouillon cubes to make my broth and Italian seasoning for the seasonings, and it was such a HIT!!! All of my in-laws scarfed it up and even came asking me where i got the recipe! So, the searching stops here, TRUST! It’s a MUST!!

    BTW, with all the extra juices, making mashed potatoes is a must! I did not make any because i already made all my sides, but i SOOOOO regret it! The juices were so good over the shredded turkey as well as stuffing!!

    1. Oh my goodness, thank you for the kind words! I’m so glad you decided to give this recipe a try and love it so much. I appreciate the 5 stars.

        1. Do not use this method unless you are planning on having Thanksgiving Breakfast. I just put an 11.66 pound turkey in at 1:00am. I slept in, so I got up at 8:22am, and the temperature in the thigh was already at 172. The breast was already over 180. We are planning on eating around 1:00 pm, so we will see if it turns out too dry. Next time I use a small bird, I will get up at 5 or 6 am to put in the oven.

          1. Hi George, I’m so sorry that turned out overdone for you, the size of the turkey is what made the difference here. It needs to be 14-16 pounds for the timing. I hope the turkey is still delicious and that you have a wonderful thanksgiving.

    1. So sorry I’m just now seeing this. You can use water with a bit of butter or oil to mimic the fat in chicken broth.

  21. You’ve made a very convincing case for using the oven as a crockpot! Love this idea, and appreciate the effort you took to write such a comprehensive post. 🙂

  22. Your flavorful turkey recipe sounds amazing! Yes, it takes time to make it, but it is worth efforts to make this deliciousness. More, it will serve dinners for a few days afterwords:)

  23. So many people prefer an early holiday dinner, especially if little kids and seniors are joining the feast! This is genius! Thanks for sharing this method!

  24. I have made this slow cooking turkey for over 30 years, you need to cook first hour on 350 and than drop it to 185-200..remember many ovens stop after 12 hours so you have to stop it and set it again for the rest of the time..it is juicy without adding chicken broth to it, So darn good.

  25. I wish I’d read the review that suggested 10-20 hours first. My turkey did not get done in 10 hours. After carving it and upping the heat to 375 to cook the pieces quickly, I cannot complain about flavor. But it did create a bit of stress before dinner.

    1. yes needs more than ten hours for certain….if the package says 5 hours it is three times that amount 15 hour..the bigger the bird the more you need to keep it in.. Cannot over cook after 19 1/2 hours.

    1. I’ve not tested it so I’m not sure of the exact time. I would recommend using a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature for doneness.

    1. I haven’t tested it using that small of a bird. I would make sure to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature as to not overcook it.

  26. Every year, I hear how people stress over making a tender & juicy turkey. How to cook it, is brining necessary, whether to roast the bird on it’s breast, then turn it over on it’s back, to rub the bird with butter under the breast skin?…. etc. I roast my turkey exactly as my grandma & my mom do, and it’s always perfect. We use one of those covered black oval roasting pans w/the little white flakes on it. It has large inverted ‘dimples’ in the cover, so it bastes the bird while it’s cooking. We bake the bird (covered) at the suggested temp. setting until it reaches the safe temperature in the breast & the drumstick. The skin will be lightly browned and beautiful, but if you like it very crispy….take the cover off in the last few minutes of cooking, & turn on the broiler for a few min. This method is foolproof. so there are no pre-Thanksgiving jitters required. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. 🙂

    1. I’ve not tested it using a frozen turkey before so I’m not sure it would have the same outcome due to the extra liquid. Sorry.

  27. Does it make a difference to roast the turkey with the breast side up vs the breast side down?
    I’ve always been told to cook with the breast side down to keep it juicy.

    1. It’s really a personal preference but the USDA recommends breast side up so that’s what I follow. It still comes out completely moist and tender.

  28. Sounds like something I would like to try but it’s just the two of us and we only get a 7-8 turkey breast. Can this smaller bird be cooked the same way??

  29. I was wanting to tru an injectable marinade. Can this be done with this recipe? Also my turkey is 13 lbs. Would I need to decrease the time?

    1. I’ve not tested it using an injectable marinade, sorry. If you’re using a smaller bird, you’ll need to decrease the time but just make sure to cook it until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees f. Make sure to use a meat thermometer to check.

  30. I have been cooking turkeys & roasts almost like this recipe. Years ago, nutritionist, Adelle Davis suggested it. Just put plain turkey [or roast] in a baking pan. Cook at 300 degrees for 1 hour to kill any surface bacteria, turn oven to whatever your meat thermometer says for that meat[160 degrees for turkey] & cook 10-20hrs–don’t cover, can season if you want.
    Comes out great every time!