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Tutorials & Tips

The Total Turkey Guide: How to Take a Turkey's Temperature

How to Take a Turkey's Temperature How to Take a Turkey's Temperature

You’ve brined, stuffed and trussed the turkey, but the hardest part is still to come: taking it out of the oven at the perfect time. The best way to ensure your holiday bird is cooked to perfection is to use a meat thermometer. Checking the temperature while your turkey is cooking will help you know when it’s just right for serving. Just follow these three easy steps:

Make sure you have one of these in your kitchen tool arsenal before the big cooking day:

Our test kitchen recommends placing the thermometer between the drumstick and side of the body so the numbers are easy to read. You can also place it horizontally into the thickest part of the thigh. If you push it in and touch bone, just back the thermometer out a little to be in the meaty thigh of the turkey.

The USDA recommends cooking poultry to a safe temperature of 165 degrees F.


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