Whichever part of the turkey you prefer, knowing it’s cooked well and full of flavor is an essential part of this holiday season! Read below for some helplines and thawing tips, should you find yourself in a bit of need before your family appears at your doorstep. . .

Here are the top 5 turkey helplines for the holidays:

  1. Butterball Turkey Talk-Line: 1-800-BUTTERBALL (1-800-288-3722) Hours of Operation: Monday-Saturday, 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM EST Website: https://www.butterball.com/
  2. USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline: 1-888-MPHOTLINE (1-888-674-6854) Hours of Operation: Monday-Friday, 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM EST Website: https://www.fsis.usda.gov/food-safety/safe-food-handling-and-preparation/usda-meat-and-poultry-hotline
  3. Jennie-O Turkey Hotline: 1-800-843-9596 Hours of Operation: Monday-Thursday, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM CST; Friday, 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM CST Website: https://www.jennieo.com/recipes/easy-cooking-whole-turkey/
  4. Honeysuckle White Turkey Hotline: 1-800-525-7070 Hours of Operation: Monday-Friday, 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM CST Website: https://honeysucklewhite.com/
  5. Norbest Turkey Hotline: 1-800-828-8500 Hours of Operation: Monday-Friday, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM CST Website: https://norbest.com/

These helplines can provide you with expert advice on everything from thawing and cooking your turkey to troubleshooting any problems you may encounter. They can also provide you with recipes, tips, and tricks for making the most of your holiday turkey.

In addition to the helplines listed above, there are a number of other resources available to help you with your holiday turkey cooking. Here are a couple of suggestions:

  • The Butterball website has a wealth of information on turkey cooking, including recipes, videos, and tips.
  • The USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline is a great resource for information on food safety, including how to properly thaw, cook, and store your turkey.

And remember, thawing is an important part of the process!

The thawing timeframe for a turkey depends on the size of the bird and the thawing method. Here are the recommended thawing times for different turkey weights:

Refrigerator Thawing

  • 4-8 pounds: 1-2 days
  • 8-12 pounds: 2-3 days
  • 12-16 pounds: 3-4 days
  • 16-20 pounds: 4-5 days

Cold Water Thawing

  • 4-8 pounds: 2-3 hours
  • 8-12 pounds: 3-4 hours
  • 12-16 pounds: 4-5 hours
  • 16-20 pounds: 5-6 hours

Microwave Thawing

  • 4-8 pounds: 30-45 minutes
  • 8-12 pounds: 45-60 minutes
  • 12-16 pounds: 60-75 minutes
  • 16-20 pounds: 75-90 minutes

General Thawing Tips

  • Thawing in the refrigerator is the safest method.
  • If you must thaw a turkey in cold water, change the water every 30 minutes to keep it cold.
  • Do not thaw a turkey at room temperature. This can encourage bacteria to grow.
  • Once thawed, cook the turkey immediately.