With Turkey Day right around the corner, I thought I would share the USDA guidelines for thawing a Turkey. I copied this right off their website Refrigerator Thawing When thawing a turkey in the refrigerator: Plan ahead: allow approximately 24 hours for each 4 to 5 pounds in a refrigerator set at 40 °F or below. Place the turkey in a container to prevent the juices from dripping on other foods. [Top of Page] Refrigerator Thawing Times Whole turkey: 4 to 12 pounds …… 1 to 3 days 12 to 16 pounds …… 3 to 4 days 16 to 20 pounds …… 4 to 5 days 20 to 24 pounds …… 5 to 6 days A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for 1 or 2 days before cooking. Foods thawed in the refrigerator can be refrozen without cooking but there may be some loss of quality. [Top of Page] Cold Water Thawing Allow about 30 minutes per pound. First be sure the turkey is in a leak-proof plastic bag to prevent cross-contamination and to prevent the turkey from absorbing water, resulting in a watery product. Submerge the wrapped turkey in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes until the turkey is thawed. Cook the turkey immediately after it is thawed. [Top of Page] Cold Water Thawing Times 4 to 12 pounds …… 2 to 6 hours 12 to 16 pounds …… 6 to 8 hours 16 to 20 pounds …… 8 to 10 hours 20 to 24 pounds …… 10 to 12 hours A turkey thawed by the cold water method should be cooked immediately. After cooking, meat from the turkey can be refrozen.