Your questions, answered
Do you have other questions regarding your turkey?
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Q: How do I know when the turkey is done?
A: Turkey is done when the meat thermometer inserted in the breast reads 170°F. and inserted in the thigh reads 180°F.
Q: Which is best, a fresh or a frozen turkey?
A: Most people will not be able to notice any difference in flavor or quality. Fresh turkeys may be more convenient since it does not require thawing. Go to How to Thaw a Frozen Turkey for more information.
Q: How long will a turkey keep in the freezer?
A: For best quality we recommend using a turkey within one year of freezing. A frozen turkey, once thawed, should be used within 2 to 3 days after it is thawed.
Q: How long will a fresh turkey keep in the refrigerator?
A: Cook the turkey by the “Use by” date found on the weight tag or weight sticker. If you do not plan to use by that date, freeze the turkey immediately.
Q: Can I refreeze a thawed turkey?
A: You can refreeze a thawed turkey if it has been properly defrosted in the refrigerator. Cook a thawed turkey within 3 days of thawing. Go to How to Thaw a Frozen Turkey for more information.
Q: What is the best way to thaw a turkey?
A: The best way to thaw a frozen turkey is in a sided pan in the refrigerator. It takes 4 hours per pound to thaw a turkey. Never thaw a turkey at room temperature. Go to How to Thaw a Frozen Turkey for more information.
Q: How much turkey should I buy?
A: Go to How to Buy a Turkey for more details.
Q: Do I need to baste my turkey?
A: No. Basting liquid poured over the surface of the turkey does not penetrate the skin. Repeated opening of the oven door to baste the turkey lengthens the cooking time.
Q: Will the plastic drum clamp melt when I roast the turkey? How do I take it off?
A: The drum clamp is made out of a heat resistant nylon designed for roasting. It is easily removed with a kitchen scissors after roasting.
Q: How long should I roast the turkey?
A: Roast turkey at 325°F. until a meat thermometer inserted in the breast reads 170°F. and inserted in the thigh reads 180°F. See How to Cook a Turkey for a roasting timetable.
Q: Is it OK to leave the leftover turkey out for people to snack on?
A: You should remove the meat from the bones and refrigerate in containers within 2 hours of roasting. Leftovers may be kept 3 to 4 days. Leftover turkey may be frozen 3 to 4 months. Go to How to Safely Handle Turkey for more information.
Q: How long can leftovers be stored?
A: Leftover turkey should be removed from the bones and refrigerated in containers within 2 hours of roasting. Leftovers may be kept 3 to 4 days. Leftover turkey may be frozen 3 to 4 months. For more information, go to How to Store Leftover Turkey.
Q: Are tom (male) turkeys more tender than hens (female)?
A: No. Tenderness depends on the age of the turkey when processed. Today, nearly all turkeys come to market young and tender, so a 24-pound turkey can be as tender as a 6-pound turkey.
Q: What are giblets?
A: Giblets are the turkey’s gizzard, heart and liver. The giblets and neck, when cooked, are a delicious addition to gravy and stuffing. Remove the package from inside the turkey before cooking.
Q: Do all JENNIE-O® whole turkeys come with a giblet bag?
A: All JENNIE-O® whole turkeys come with a giblet bag with the exception of the JENNIE-O® OVEN READY™ turkeys. The giblet bag can be found inside the turkey.
Q: What are self-basting turkeys?
A: Some turkeys are sold as "basted" or "self-basted" which means a marinade usually containing natural broth, stock or water and seasoning has been added. The percentage of solution added to the turkey is printed on the label.
Q: Why does my turkey appear to be blue in color?
A: The skin color of a raw turkey is off-white to cream. Under the skin, the color can range from pink to lavender blue depending on the amount of fat under the skin.
Q: What is OVEN READY™ turkey?
A: OVEN READY™ is the first whole turkey that comes in its own FOOL-PROOF® cooking bag that allows it to go directly from freezer to oven without thawing, cleaning or seasoning.
Q: Are OVEN READY™ turkeys pre-cooked?
A: OVEN READY™ turkey is not pre-cooked. It is fresh, frozen turkey that can be found in your grocer's freezer section.
Q: Do I have to thaw an OVEN READY™ turkey?
A: No. You do not need to thaw OVEN READY™ turkey because it comes wrapped in a FOOL-PROOF® cooking bag that allows it to go directly from freezer to oven without the need to thaw.
Q: Do I have to clean an OVEN READY™ turkey?
A: No. You do not need to clean OVEN READY™ turkey because it has already been cleaned for you. The neck and giblets have already been removed for your convenience.
Q: Does an OVEN READY™ turkey need to be seasoned?
A: No. You do not need to season OVEN READY™ turkey because it comes preseasoned.
Q: Can I stuff an OVEN READY™ turkey?
A: No. To avoid damaging the FOOL-PROOF® cooking bag that OVEN READY™ turkey comes in, we do not recommend stuffing the turkey. Also, harmful bacteria can survive in stuffing that has not reached a safe internal temperature, therefore, it is recommended that stuffing be cooked separately.
Q: Can I make gravy with an OVEN READY™?
A: Yes, the FOOL-PROOF® cooking bag seals in the juices while cooking. These juices can be poured from the bag when the turkey is done. We have provided instructions on the outside of the package for great tasting turkey gravy.
Q: How do I cook an OVEN READY™ turkey?
A: Simply pre-heat your oven to 375°F., remove the turkey from its outer package (leaving it in its FOOL-PROOF® cooking bag) and place in a roasting pan. Cut six slits in the top of the bag and pull it up and away from the turkey to release the vacuum. Place the turkey in your oven and roast until the pop-up timer pops up and your meat thermometer reaches 170 degrees in the breast and 180 degrees in the thigh.
Additionally, try the OVEN READY™ Boneless Skinless Breast in your slow cooker: Place cooking bag with frozen turkey in the bottom of the slow cooker. Cut three 1/2 inch slits in the top of the FOOL PROOF® cooking bag. Cook for approximately 5 1/2 hours with the slow cooker on high setting or 6 1/2 hours on the low setting and your meat thermometer reaches 170 degrees in the breast and 180 degrees in the thigh.
Q: How long does an OVEN READY™ turkey take to cook?
A: A typical 11-13 pound turkey will cook in approximately 4 — 5 hours.
Q: How will I know when an OVEN READY™ turkey is done?
A: Your OVEN READY™ turkey is done cooking when the timer pops up and your meat thermometer reaches 170 degrees in the breast and 180 degrees in the thigh.
Q: What size does OVEN READY™ turkey come in?
A: OVEN READY™ turkey comes in a whole turkey, bone-in breast and a boneless, skinless breast. The whole turkey is available in a 11-13 pound size.
Q: Where can I find an OVEN READY™ turkey?
A: Check with your local grocer to see if they carry OVEN READY™ in their frozen meat section.
Q: Do you have a listing of JENNIE-O® gluten free products?
A: Yes. Browse our gluten free products. Please note that although our products are labeled in compliance with government regulations, it is always necessary to read the labels on the products to determine if the food product meets your required needs.
Q: Do you have a listing of JENNIE-O® products by sodium content?
A: Yes. Browse our products.