Experience with deep fried Turkey?

Discussion in 'Grilling Chicken' started by bbqandfootball, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. This is the closest forum I could find for posting about fried turkey, so I thought I'd give it a whirl.

    Got an electric deep fryer for Christmas last year, and was thinking about firing it up with a small turkey, just to get an idea of what to expect, corrections to made, ect....

    It fries up to a 14 pounder, has an electric elemant that heats the oil to 400, and is programable. Says not to use it outside, but ain't no way I'm doing it inside. I've heard too many horror stories over the past few years.

    I'm gonna inject it, and of course wait till it's fully thawed. I've heard about some explosions also. Lol.

    Guess my main questions have to do with the oil. Peanut is best, right? And how long will that used oil keep in the fridge after using? Till Thanksgiving?

    Hate to throw all that money spent on oil away. My fryer has a drain and hose to keep the used oil, so...

    Any other advice is more than welcome.

  2. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    If the fryer has a thermostat fry at 350. Peanut oil is good and I would filter it back into the jug. It should be just fine to hold it until Thanksgiving. Make sure not to fill the oil over the fill level as it really raises the level once you drop the turkey into the grease and thats where most people make their mistake. I think I fry for 3-4 minutes per lb then check the temp when I pull it out I'd have to look again to find exact time. If you really want to try something different and good smoke the turkey to about 140-150 internal then fry it to finish. I did one that way last Thanksgiving and will be doing it again by several requests this year
  3. I have fried several turkeys, if I remember right it was 2 minutes to the pound. I always strained the oil after it cooled through a coffee filter. I kept this oil for several years reusing it with some fresh oil added. Definitely use peanut oil! It will withstand the high heat without breaking down.

  4. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I have never used the electric fryer mine is a propane one. With it I load the turkey breast down and you need to make sure that the turkey is dry as any water will cause it to boil over.

    Here is a How To that I found for you...
  5. txbbqman

    txbbqman Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I fry Turkeys every year for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

    The instructions I have ( Had them for a very long time but can't find them so I may be off a little) say 3-4 minutes per pound for anything under 12 pounds and 4-5 minutes for anything over 12 pounds.

    I generally run mine for 4 minutes per pound, pull them and let them sit for a minute and the check the internal Temp. Minimum for a Turkey is 165
    As long as I am close I go with it. With the fried skin it will cook in itself a little so I dont care about a couple of degrees.

    I agree with Piney on cooking it at 350 and YES YES YES on Peanut Oil, by far my favorite for doing Turkey.

    Oh and BTW you are Right on the money for NOT doing that in your house,
    as an ex-fire fighter I can say many a home have been severely damaged by turkey / fish fryers
  6. rivet

    rivet Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    You've got great advice above...you'll do well. All I can add is that if you ever use that saved oil for anything else, it's done for. Reusing "turkey" oil is fine, since it maintains the remaining flavors.

    Many years ago, down in Florida, we had a large fried turkey in peanut oil. Two weekends after that, after a very successful fishing trip, had a fish fry. Ooops, all that oil was done for. [​IMG]
  7. cajunsmoke13

    cajunsmoke13 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Like they said. Just remember, lower that bird real slow into that oil. I always put it in part way and lift back out. Get some good long insulated gloves or wear sleeves. Oil will splash out so be careful in that area. I always do mine in an open area, no carport, garage nothing. Open is the way to go. I never reuse my oil. I chuck it and buy new, but that's just me. Little weird about that.
  8. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have fried turkeys for years and never had a problem or someone run off hating it. One thing I would do first is put your turkey in the pot with nothing in it and pour water into iot till the water is about 4-5 inches from the top. Then mark your frier and you'll end the problem of boil overs. Next DO NOT fry inside who ever said thats hasn't fried a turkey. I usually fry them at 325 or so and cook for 2.5 a pound and you should be good to go.
  9. Thanks for all of the great advice everyone.

    And yeah, the only thing I would use the oil for between the experimental turkey fry and Thanksgiving would be a big batch of hot wings. Which I assume wouldn't make a difference in flavor.

    Should I rub the outside of the bird with some type of creole seasoning after injecting?
  10. Starting tomorrow I'm officially off for 11 days, so I'm chomping at the bit to fry a bird.

    Just so Thanksgiving morning won't be a completly new world.

    And also so I'll have plenty of turkey sammies while on vacation, lol.
  11. My fryer has a line built in, but thanks for the reminder. Yep, I've heard about many a boil overs.

    Definatly not doing it inside, as I said before.

    No way!
  12. Also, by the way my electric rig describes things, It'll take almost an hour to cook. Seems like a long time for a 14 pounder.

    I'll check the internal Temp... don't worry. I know all cooking times are different.
  13. rivet

    rivet Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    A rub really won't make a difference in the taste, it's all in the injection. You're gonna end up with some beautifully golden crispy skin and about 1/8th inch maximum crispy meat that has been immediately seared "shut" and fried when the bird goes in. The rest of the bird- internally- will be a juicy piece of tenderness full of whatever flavours you injected it with.

    Looking forward to some Fry View! [​IMG]
  14. txbbqman

    txbbqman Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    well by my method 14pounds * 4 mins per pound is 56 minutes so about an hour.

    I have tried to rub the outside of the bird before it just never seems to do much good, it all comes off the second that bad boy hits the oil.
    Just a waste of Rub IMHO.

    Injection is the way to go. And be sure to lift the skin and inject under the skin. If you puncture the skin you have given your marinade an escape route and escape it will.
  15. rw willy

    rw willy Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    All the rub will burn and end up in the bottom of the fryer.
    Inject, or enjoy the taste of perfect turkey.
  16. marty catka

    marty catka Meat Mopper

    Love the taste of deep fried turkey. Hate the bother of the oil, straining, etc. Never liked to store used oil, seemed to have a bitter taste.

    But I would like to mention that there is an alternative. I have found that the infrared oil free fryers are great! Not to sound like a commercial, but CharBroil has put out an excellent unit. Turkeys and chickens come out juicy and tender with a nice crisp skin. I use about 4 ounces of peanut oil on the bird instead of 3-4 gallons. It takes a little longer per pound (approx. 10 min/lb) but you don't have to preheat the unit either.

    I have done turkeys, turkey breast, whole chicken, chicken parts, pork chops, burgers, beef tenderloin, pork tenderloin, prime rib roast and shish kabob in mine and have yet to have a bad meal.

    They are definitely worth having in your arsenal. And the rub stays on the bird. Rub first making sure it gets under the skin, then a little peanut oil on skin over the rub. Mouthwatering!
  17. newb

    newb Smoke Blower

    Go to a local Pizza Hut and ask the manager for an empty oil jug and drain your oil into that. Then stick it into a chest freezer and it will keep a very long time...that way you don't have to worry about straining it. After the 4th use maybe 5th then its time to pitch it.
  18. zapper

    zapper Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Newb has it about right, after a few birds the stuff starts to go bad. The seasonings and stuff in the oil start to burn and go bad.

    I never heard of freezing, might work

    To offset the high cost of oil it is usually better to have four birds set to go. Round up a couple of neighbors and split the cost.
  19. zapper

    zapper Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Me again

    At the risk of getting in deep trouble I have to admit that sometimes I like fried better than smoked.

    Also the first time that I ever had a fried turkey was with some true crazy Cajuns (are there any other kinds of Cajuns?) At any rate they would stab the bird with a long thin knife like a boner or fillet knife and then stuff the stab wound/pocket with pepper, onion, garlic, pepper, celery, did I say pepper? and what ever other goodness that they had. Stab and stuff all over the bird and anywhere there was room to stuff something in. When it is all done, fried and sliced it is kind of like a turkey based pepper loaf
  20. Deep fried turkey is so awesome! I know two different people who set their garages on fire because they didn't check that oil level before dropping the turkey in, err on the side of caution! Good luck!!

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