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Have you cooked a turkey on convection roast?

Ilene Perl
September 2, 2013

I haven't used the convection roast on my oven yet (have not used convection for anything yet). For some reason I find it intimidating and confusing. My oven has a meat probe, I haven't used either. Please tell me how you cooked your turkey using convection roast....I read to tent after it browns? This will be a "practice" turkey, only 12 pounds. Im having thanksgiving again here this year. Thanks in advance for your help.

Comments (42)

  • badgergal

    I used the meat probe and convection roasted this stuffed turkey last Thanksgiving. As you can see it browned up nicely. It was moist and tender. I did not tent it. The convection temperature was 325. I have a GE profile oven. Love using the probe for roasting. The meat has alwas come out just perfect. I also use convection bake all the time for making multiple racks of cookies. Each rack bakes up evenly. I have the auto recipe conversion feature turned on so that the oven automatically converts regular baking temperatures to convection baking temperatures. Convection baking temperature is 25 degrees lower than regular bake.

    This post was edited by badgergal on Mon, Sep 2, 13 at 13:38

  • alex9179

    My oven doesn't say "convection roast", buy I ALWAYS use the convection setting to roast whole chickens and I LOVE my temp probe. Both produce a wonderfully moist bird.

    I salt the bird the day before and let it dry out in the fridge for 12-24 hrs for crisp skin (which convection really delivers). When using a pan, I use as shallow a pan as possible and elevate it on some kind of rack so that the air can flow all around.

    I think you will be very pleased. Here are my birds. I roasted them directly on the rack with pan below to catch the drippings.

  • ginny20

    I use the Perfect Turkey setting on my Elux, and it is convection roast with the probe. I just use the same recipe and method as always, but it takes less time. I have also used the actual Convection Roast setting with or without the probe to cook pork, roast beef, and half chickens. The meat turns out juicy and it takes less time. The probe is nice because if you set a target temp, my oven then goes into Keep Warm mode when the temp is reached. I still have to pull out the owners manual to do these things, since I don't do them often, but it's worth it.

    I agree with alex9179 about elevating the bird. The first time I did it, I used a roasting pan with a rack in it, and the wings weren't fully cooked. Now I make sure the whole bird is up out of the pan.

  • jellytoast

    Related question ... does the convection fan tend to blow the grease splatters all over the place, making for a really dirty oven after you've roasted a turkey or a chicken?

  • badgergal

    I have not had any problems with the convection fan blowing grease splatters all over the place when making turkey or chicken.

  • rococogurl

    I've done it both ways. Sort of depends on the oven and how it performs. One thing I will say is you get to know your oven doing a turkey.

    alex mades some really good points: air dry the turkey in advance, get it out of a deep roaster and cook it on the lowest rack possible (heat rises).

    I leave mine out of the fridge for at least 6 hours before roasting, which helps the heat penetrate. I also leave the stuffing out as well (no egg sourdough with mushrooms, onions and sage) so it's not ice cold.

    I stuff and truss it then rub it lightly with vegetable oil. I also kick-start it at 425 for 15-20 minutes then I turn the heat down to 325 for the duration. That starts the browning earlier but also helps insure it will be cooked through -- so it needs to be near the bottom of the oven and it might need a sheet of foil loosely over the top at some point.

    Whether I'm using convection or not, I cook it at the same temperature -- convection cooks more quickly in some ovens but that mainly affects how long it cooks.

    My oven has a drip pan that slips underneath whole the rack. The one issue with using the rack method is that there are no veggies in the roasting pan and no cooked-on bits that give the gravy so much flavor. So it depends on the end result: gravy or no gravy.

    More often, I put the turkey in a shallow but sturdy roaster (never a deep one) and let it rest on a bed of finely minced onions, celery and carrots with thyme leaves and a bay leaf or two. Those cook down and, as the juices start to caramelize, the veggies help form the base of the gravy. Meanwhile, I take chicken stock and enrich it with all the turkey trimming, neck, gizzard and heart.

    Turkey is relatively lean, which is why it's always important to keep the breast moist. When I was editing a food magazine years ago, we did a side-by-side test of basting and no basting. Basted turkey was more moist (it also gives a base for the gravy -- guess by now it's clear I love me my gravy). So I baste as quickly as possible (opening the oven door lets out 1/3 of the heat) so the first baste is when the oven is turned down from 425 to 325 -- it helps reduce the heat. Then about 1x per hour during the cooking. I've seen turkeys take forever to cook because someone was pokey about the basting and 325 isn't a very hot oven.

    I've found that the breast meat can be kept super moist by putting some stuffing under the skin all over the breast and then shaping it smooth. Great results and terrific, crisp skin that's sort of like crackling with benefits.

    There is clean up in the oven after roasting a turkey though not always as much as with a chicken.

    A probe is great as long as it's in the thickest part of the thigh or breast but not touching the bone. Then there's the old skewer test for doneness -- stick it in down to the bone in the breast and in the second joint -- if juices are pink it needs more time -- they run clear when it's done.

  • Buehl

    I've been convection roasting turkeys (with temp probe) since 1995 - and they have always come out perfect! They're always juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside (the skin, that is!)

    One thing to be aware of - it will take far less time to roast the turkey with convection than it takes to roast it non-convection! I usually roast 20+pound turkeys (with stuffing) in 3 to 4 hours.

    The first time I had my in-laws for Thanksgiving, my MIL was all worried when I didn't get up until 11am or so to start cooking b/c she always got up at the crack of dawn to begin turkey prep. [I'm a night person and made all the salads, etc. overnight - I work better after midnight!] She was afraid we weren't going to eat until 8 at night! I assured her that we were fine, we would eat at 4pm as scheduled, and the turkey would be done in plenty of time. She fretted the whole time until the turkey was done and was then amazed at how fast it cooked and how good it tasted!

    BTW...I do not tent my turkey either - but I do baste it a few times.


    I use a roasting pan that has a shallow pan with a roasting rack that lifts the turkey out of the pan and allows the air to circulate 360 degrees around the turkey. We have plenty of "stuff" for gravy (although, I'm not a fan of gravy - but my DH and in-laws are.)

    This post was edited by buehl on Mon, Sep 2, 13 at 16:01

  • Ilene Perl

    Thank you all so much!! I'm going to buy a shallow roasting pan with rack tomorrow, and am going to make turkey with the probe, on convection. Do most baste it once per hour?? And I'm glad to hear its ok to tent it.....why I'm so anxious about this is beyond me, when it came to buying my oven I only wanted a convection oven! Thanks again for all your help!

  • Ilene Perl

    I went out and bought a beautiful SS rooster for using convection oven the first time. I followed all directions, put my meat probe in, put turkey on rack, and went to put it in the oven.....I forgot I don't have a 30 inch oven, mine is 27 inch, since I used my old boxes during my "budget update", the roaster didnt fit in my oven. I wound up using a cookie sheet, and my old turkey rack...luckily for me as I was told there is very little juice cooking it this way. My turkey came out moist, and nicely browned. I'm ready for Thanksgiving....thanks for your help. I'm going to buy a new rack, and continue using this cookie sheet for future turkeys and roasts.

  • wannaknow1

    I have been reading all of these responses with great interest. Each person could easily be a salesperson for convection ovens - you are so convincing.

    I have a two questions, first for rococogurl: I was surprised when you said that you leave it "out of the fridge for at least 6 hours before roasting," because of the warnings you hear about safe food handling. I see you were a food magazine editor, so I am hoping you can put the alarms that went off in my mind to rest.

    Second, Ilene's photo above shows a really shallow cookie sheet pan and she says she was "was told there is very little juice cooking it this way." Does this happen with chicken also? I don't have a convection oven, but I have cooked a whole chicken raised over a corning or pyrex pan that are at least an inch deep, and I have found that there is a lot of liquid that comes out. It's terrific that convection would let it cook over a cookie sheet without overflowing.


  • olivertwistkitchen

    Also new to convection here. I don't understand all my convection settings. There's convection ROAST and convection BAKE. What's the difference and how do I know what to use? It was easy in the old oven, just set the temp and insert the food.

    I also don't understand the attached probe. If I remove the bird from the oven, or even just roll it out to baste or something, the cord on the probe won't reach. So what do I do? Yank it out of the bird and have it dangle in the oven every time? Unplug it from the oven? And I think I read that the oven automatically turns off when the probe hits the desired temp. I just don't get it. Seems easier to use my old meat thermometer.


  • rococogurl

    wannaknow - FDA and food safety people give a 2 hour guideline for food being "safe" out of the refrigerator. Anyone who is concerned about this should abide by that guideline.

    But I've edited a food magazine, written 4 cookbooks, and taught cooking classes for 9 years so I've test-cooked and watched others cook turkeys and everything else. IME a turkey that's been defrosted in the fridge can have a considerable amount of ice crystals both on the giblet package and inside the cavity. Even fresh turkeys can have some if they've been iced.

    So, IME, leaving a turkey out for 6 hours (4 minimum) in a cool location -- underscore cool by which I mean 68 to 70 F -- allows the deicing to complete and the cavity to be properly drained of residual liquid that collects there.

    Otherwise, that liquid in the cavity (which harbors a lot of natural bacteria and traces of blood -- notice it's pink) will be absorbed by your lovely stuffing while the turkey cooks. Or, it will pool up inside the cavity and not look so appetizing when it's done (also true for chicken).

    I want all that excess liquid out of my turkey. So I leave it in my sink to let it drain. An idea place is a prep sink (open end down) with a sink rack. The location must be cool.

    Why don't I worry about safety? Optimum refrigerator temperature is 40 degrees F. (My fridge is 40F this a.m.) That's 8 degrees above freezing. IME an 18 to 20 pound turkey that's refrigerated for a day or two doesn't get dangerously warm in 6 hours, especially with the troublesome liquid being removed.

    I handle poultry with food-safety gloves (always a good idea). I rinse the cavity (again, they say you're not supposed to) and I pat it as dry as possible with paper towels. I also put some kosher salt or sea salt in there.

    Also, my sourdough-mushroom stuffing has no egg. No egg in stuffing is a good practice. Important: I stuff just before roasting -- I don't stuff ahead and I don't ever refrigerate the turkey with the stuffing inside. That's not good for reasons stated above.

    Stuffed or unstuffed, cook the turkey right away. It shouldn't hang around.

    Additionally, I use a fast roasting method for turkey that starts in a 425 degree oven for 20 minutes. Even after the oven is turned down to 325, the turkey is cooking at higher heat during the first hour.

    That means heat will penetrate faster to the center, -- which is especially desirable if the turkey is stuffed -- helps thick breast meat and leg joint cook through. Also, the skin (which permits evaporation) becomes browned sooner and thus retains moisture better.

    Ilene improvised with the cookie sheet but I use something slightly deeper for roasting poultry. Had Ilene been roasting a brined turkey there would have been trouble. A two-inch high roasting pan will do. That's what I use. I don't like deep "turkey" roasters.

    I love a convection setting for turkey for the reason stated above -- the hot air circulation creates crisp skin that helps seal in juices.

    This post was edited by rococogurl on Sat, Sep 7, 13 at 9:11

  • rosylady

    rococogurl: wow, what a wealth of information. Thanks for taking the time to share your method and tips.

    I think if someone feels really comfortable in their ability to cook a turkey properly and well, they feel ok breaking the "rules" for handling the turkey before cooking.

    Most people, I think, are not as confident about determining if their turkey is completely cooked through, so they play it safe.

    In cooking school, we took a course on food safety. It was really informative, and has made me a much more confident cook. I know I can leave a steak out on the counter to come up to room temp before I sear it, because any germs will be on the outside of the meat and killed during cooking. A hamburger is a different story.

    I will be cooking a turkey in my new CornuFe convection oven this fall. I have baked a lot with convection, but never roasted poultry. This thread has taught me a lot!

  • ginny20

    Yeah, thanks rococo! I've cooked a lot of turkeys, but letting it sit out a while and drain first sounds good to me. Like you, I start mine at 425 and then reduce it, based on a recipe in an ancient Gourmet magazine. Per that recipe, I also rub the bird inside and out with kosher salt and ground pepper, and I massage softened butter under the breast skin. No idea if it does anything, but it always seems so, I don't know, chef-like! It adds a certain panache to the Thanksgiving prep, and makes it look like I know what I'm doing. I also let the unstuffed bird rest, all tented and covered in dish towels, for about an hour before serving it. This time varies based on how early it comes out of the oven.

    olivertwist - good question. Do you have an Elux, as I do?I don't know the difference between convection bake and convection roast, although I do use convection roast for thick meats, as directed in the user's manual. If Chris from Electrolux is still around, maybe he can tell us. Maybe he can also tell us why they have a separate setting for "Rapid Preheat." If you can make the oven preheat faster, why not just set it that way all the time? I usually use Rapid Preheat. It's in the Cooking Options.

    As to the probe, I put it in the turkey thigh near the front of the oven, and I can still fully extend the rack to baste the bird. When the probe hits the set temp - and you can set the temp however you want, I don't always use the default - my oven beeps and goes into Keep Warm mode, which is 170 degrees, I think. If the meat were not actually cooked, you could just take out the probe and turn the oven back on. The probe is better than a meat thermometer because you don't have to keep opening the oven to check, which makes the oven lose heat. Also, since convection cooks faster, and different birds cook at different rates, and I'm distracted cooking the rest of the meal, the probe helps ensure that I don't accidentally overcook the bird. (I've done that in the past. That's what gravy is for.) The trick is to get the probe in the correct position, also shown in the user manual. Did I mention that I keep the user manual in a drawer next to the oven for easy reference? It's worth a perusal. I learned a lot from it about the different capabilities of the oven.

  • kksmama

    Fascinating thread, thanks for sharing the info! I'm going to try out some convection roasted chickens soon.

    Rococogurl, do you brine? Would you share the recipe?

    I've been brining my turkey for years, and roasting it upside down for about 1/2 or more of the cooking time per a Cook's magazine suggestion. I use a brine that is about half strength, because I love to make gravy, and stock, and there would otherwise be too much salt.

  • rococogurl

    I don't brine. One Thanksgiving, my sister insisted on ordering the turkey from her butcher and it was extortionately expensive. When I got it in the oven, and the roaster kept filling up with salty liquid, I realized they had brined it as a way of adding weight.

    My friends at Cook's do a great job and think everything through thoroughly. If I had to choose a recipe source for something unfamiliar, I'd go there. So if you have their brining method, I'd stick with that.

    I have another method. I completely stuff the breast of the turkey under the skin with my stuffing and reform it to look plump. I also stuff the neck and main cavity. Stuffing under the skin is a layer of protection for the lean meat there so the turkey is always moist. Plus the skin is amazing when it's done.

    My stuffing is sourdough bread with mushrooms, celery and sage. It originally included crumbled sausage but over the years I lightened it up. I truss to keep it looking good and to make it easier to remove the turkey when it's done.

    I roast on a bed of minced vegetables (onions, celery, carrots) with thyme and bay. So the juices from the turkey and the stuffing blend with those. I make some turkey stock from the trimmings and then, when the turkey is finished, I remove it from the pan, skim off the fat and use everything else for the gravy which gets simmered simmered down and concentrated.

    Couldn't do that -- as you say -- with a brined turkey. Thanksgiving is my favorite and I do turkey and trimmings every year even when it's just the two of us. Gravy is a must-have for our leftovers.

    This post was edited by rococogurl on Sun, Sep 8, 13 at 12:12

  • kksmama

    Thank you, Rococogurl! I can't wait to try stuffing under the breast skin. And while I'm experimenting I'll try skipping the egg.

  • wannaknow1

    Thanks Roccogurl, and everyone else. I will be clipping and saving this great stuff.

  • eaga

    This is a great, bumpworthy thread. Thank you to all who posted!

  • sreedesq

    Yes, thanks all - especially rococo. I will hopefully be using my Elux for the first time this year. Has anyone used it on just a turkey breast, since that is what my family prefers? If so, how long does it take per lb. on average? Thanks!

  • Linda

    Wow, what an informative thread! I'm HOPING my Elux will be plugged in by Thanksgiving, so this might well be my first meal! Many, many thanks Rococogurl for sharing such great ideas and your expertise. I have always been a sausage/celery/onion/EGG/stuffing person. Would you be willing to share your sourdough mushroom dressing? Sounds wonderful!!

  • gpraceman55

    We never use the oven for cooking a turkey. That is what the smoker is for. You just can't get that flavor and juiciness from an oven. No basting necessary. Get the coals hot, add a few big chunks of wood to the coals, put a water pan under the turkey (keeps the turkey moist and catches the drippings for use in the gravy), put a good rub on the turkey, pop in a digital thermometer, and wait until the turkey is done. Yummy.

  • Ellen1234

    Great information! I saved this off when I originally saw it -- it will be very helpful for me as I don't really cook!

    I have a question --- I have a 30" Electrolux WaveTouch wall oven, and a 36" Wolf AG range....

    I was planning on cooking the turkey on convection based on this thread. Now I'm not sure which oven I should use! It will be a 26lb. turkey (need to feed 26-30 people). I also plan to cook a separate turkey breast - not sure where yet. I do also have a Nesco oven

    Any thoughts???


  • rococogurl

    Happy to share the stuffing recipe, legallin, thanks for asking.

    A few notes:
    **There is no egg in this stuffing -- none is needed.
    **If someone wants to make it richer there are two ways I've done it (though I'm sure someone will come up with something else) one is to mix in about 4 tb of unsalted butter cut into 1/4-inch cubes just before stuffing the turkey. Or add cooked pork sausage to the recipe as specified below.
    **I usually use non-latex gloves when I work with the turkey and stuffing just to protect my hands from scrapes and the gloves make it easier to stuff under the breast, I find. I remove them before I truss (too slippery otherwise).
    ** Frozen turkeys need to be thoroughly defrosted and drained really, really well and blotted well inside. (Best to see notes upthread on handling).

    Mushroom-Sage Turkey Stuffing

    Makes about 10 cups

    Enough for cavity and breast of a 12-pound turkey. This can be prepared several days in advance and stored in an airtight container. It should be brought to room temperature before stuffing the turkey. The recipe doubles and triples easily and a any variety of mushrooms (or a mix) can be used.

    1-pound day-old sourdough bread (I use a sourdough boule), cut into 1-inch cubes
    2 cups boiling chicken stock
    6 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
    3 medium garlic cloves, minced
    2 medium onions, minced
    4 medium celery ribs, sliced thinly or chopped
    1-pound fresh mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced thinly (can be combo of white mushroom & portobellos, cremini or can be any mixture of fresh mushrooms or fresh combined with dried. If using dried mushrooms (cepes) strain and add sub the mushroom-soaking liquid for the stock above - coffee filter best for straining)
    Salt and ground pepper
    1 teaspoon dried or fresh thyme leaves
    1 teaspoon dried, crumbled sage leaves, or ½ teaspoon chopped fresh sage
    ½ teaspoon dried summer savory, or 1 teaspoon chopped fresh savory
    1/3 cup minced parsley

    Put the bread cubes in a large mixing bowl. Pour over the hot chicken or mushroom broth and mix thoroughly; set aside to cool.

    Heat 3 tbsp. oil in a large skillet. Add garlic and onions. Stir over low heat until softened. Stir in celery and cook over medium-low heat until celery softens; add to bowl with the bread.

    Heat 3 more tbsp. oil to the skillet. Stir in the mushrooms and cook over medium-high heat until they darken and all the juices have evaporated. Add mushrooms to the bowl. Add salt, pepper, thyme and savory; mix thoroughly. Adjust seasoning to taste. Can cool, cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.

    Remove stuffing from refrigerator 2 to 3 hours in advance. Stir in parsley. It is ready to use.

    Note about additions: 1 pound of cooked bulk pork sausage can be thoroughly cooked, drained, crumbled and added to the stuffing. It is delicious but makes it much heavier (of course) and it makes more stuffing.

    To stuff the turkey 3 ways (neck, breast, cavity)

    Remove everything from the turkey cavity (I keep the neck, heart and giblet to cook in the stock for the gravy. The liver can be cooked, minced and added to the stuffing if you like or used for a pet -- otherwise discard).

    Turn the turkey with the leg end facing you and check inside the cavity from the leg end for anything along the backbone -- scrape it out with a paring knife and discard the gunk and any visible fat. Check around near the tail and remove any remnants of pinfeathers with a tweezer there, or elsewhere.

    Turn it so the neck end faces you, lift the neck flap and pull away all the visible fat and anything else clinging to the neck skin, taking care not to cut through the skin with a knife or make any holes in the neck skin.

    Rinse turkey in ice cold water, drain well it well by upending for a few minutes. Then pat it dry inside and out with paper toweling, changing the toweling several times. Be sure to blot out all excess liquid possible inside the cavity. The turkey is ready to stuff.

    Turn the turkey so the neck end faces you. Lift up the neck skin, and with your fingers, gently feel for the connecting membrane the holds the skin onto each side of the breast, which you can see. Carefully break through that connecting membrane, wedging your fingers in between the skin and breast meat and working around to make a pocket with a 1-inch margin all around. Work carefully to avoid making holes in the skin, which will stay connected to the breast bone.

    Repeat to make a pocket over the other side.

    To stuff, lift up neck skin and push small handfuls of stuffing into each pocket, working it down towards the cavity end. Fill the pocket evenly to form a 1-inch thick stuffing layer. Repeat to fill the other side. Massage as needed from outside to equalize stuffing and mold it to the contours of the breast.

    Then stuff the small neck cavity. Pull the neck skin under the turkey, then secure it by twisting the wing tips back and under so they hold the neck skin in place (if the skin is too short to be held in place by the wings, it can be secured with a bamboo skewer or trussing nail). Wing tips are flexible and will stay put so the neck-end of the turkey rests on them.

    Turn the turkey with the leg ends facing you. Pat the inside of the turkey dry again with paper toweling. Spoon stuffing into the cavity, pushing it back as you work. It can mound up outside slightly or not. Slide a piece of trussing string under the turkey tail. Pull the legs together then loop the string up and around the legs in a figure 8. Pull it tight and tie a knot to secure them.

    It is not necessary to sew the turkey closed at the cavity end.

    The turkey is stuffed and ready for roasting. It can be and set aside at room temperature 70-72F for 3 to 4 hours, if necessary.

    This post was edited by rococogurl on Sat, Nov 16, 13 at 10:17

  • Mgoblue85

    Yummy!!! Reading this has made me very hungry.

    I have to agree with gpraceman - nothing better than a turkey on a charcoal grill. I was forced to do it this way to free up space in the oven for all the fixins. That was several years ago and I haven't looked back.

  • berryjam

    Thank you rococo for sharing. It's 4:22am here and now I'm hungry.

  • rococogurl

    Ellen, don't think it matters which oven you use as both will do fine.

    I'd likely chose the Elux since, if you plan to baste, it will recover the heat more quickly after the oven door is opened than the much bigger Wolf oven. A 26 pounder is too big to move in and out just for basting.

    That also gives you a ton of room for keeping the sides hot in the Wolf on the multiple racks.

  • Buehl

    Gpraceman - I hear you, but I don't like things cooked in a smoker! I don't like the resulting taste. I guess I'm not a smoked meat person. I have a friend who smokes everything when the weather is warm enough (around here that's about 9 months out of the year), I just smile politely, take a little bit, and move on.

  • Ellen1234

    Thanks! Here's another question --- what is the consensus on oven bags, and putting the turkey in there rather than basting? My mom is suggesting to cook the turkey in an oven bag.

  • kksmama

    Thank you Rococogurl, Buehl and all. I did convection roast my turkey with the probe in the thigh, and with stuffing between the skin and breast. SO much easier, faster, and moister than my previous efforts and I was confident that it was really, truly, done but not overdone. Definitely going to do more convection probe roasting.
    What do you roast/bake that is better done in regular mode than convection mode?

  • angela12345

    Hi Ilene, I got your email. Please email me again from My Page above and include your email address. I am unable to respond to you from your My Page.

  • rococogurl

    @kks - Glad you had success with your turkey. One of the joys of my kitchen now is how much easier it is to do so many things.

    For me, regular vs convection is not a matter of better/worse. Anything that cooks by just heating through I do on regular. F.ex. I baked 7-1/2 pounds of sweet potatoes the other night on regular. I reheat/heat something like lasagna, souflle on regular bake.

    But I do pies, cakes, cookies on convection so they presumably cook more evenly. I'm roasting root veggies, poultry -- anything that needs browning, crisping or evenly circulated heat I use convection.

  • kksmama

    Oh thanks rococogirl, those examples make sense. So if I understand correctly, an oven with something covered with foil, or a lid, could be baked regularly but if sharing with rolls could also be on convection.

  • julieboulangerie

    You can totally use convection roast with just a turkey breast, I did it this evening. Skin was brown and crispy and downright delicious. I should have started the breast-side down and then flipped it over due to some variation in done-ness.

    I like the dry brine method.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Russ Parson's Dry-Brined Turkey

  • graciel57

    Just bumping this because I just got a convection oven. This is a great thread!

  • homebodyoasis

    This is a great post! Thanks Rococogurl for sharing your wealth of knowledge... So excited to use our new GE cafe convection this Thanksgiving. Thanks again and an early Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. :)

  • romy718

    Adding my thanks also. I bookmarked & clipped this post.

  • christina222_gw

    Just roasted these for our annual company holiday lunch this week. They're 20 pounds each, unstuffed. Roasted them in convection roast (I have two ovens) for just over two hours. I strongly recommend getting a meat thermometer that has a probe that stays in the meat while the rest stays outside the oven and beeps when the desired temperature is reached. Takes some time getting used to convection and this will prevent overlooking.

    Where I live a 20lb turkey costs about $11. I'd consider buying and cooking an extra one ahead of time if you're nervous about it. You'll learn exactly how it's going to go and you can freeze the meat and bones for use throughout the winter.

  • rococogurl

    kks -- if you're doing yeast rolls that have to rise the sharing is tricky. You don't want them under the turkey or too high in the oven. I'd do those on their own. Most breads/rolls do best near bottom of oven. Most anything else can share.

    And yes, anything covered might as well use regular bake.

    LOL about the cost of turkeys. I saw a 20-pounder organic turkey in the case. $96.

    This post was edited by rococogurl on Sat, Nov 22, 14 at 15:09

  • Sandy

    Roco...so if I am using my convection (for the first time I might add) to cook a 24 pound stuffed turkey, do I NOT cover it with foil??. I have always covered with foil and it seems odd not to. What am I missing? Won't the wings and legs get too burnt? Thanks for your help. Do you advise I bring the temp up to 425 for 20 minutes and then drop it down to 325? I have cooked Turkeys for 30 years in a regular oven and this convection oven makes me nervous..haha. But I do like the faster time.

  • schneibe

    Shoot- just wrote a long comment/question and it seems to have lost it. I just read this whole thread. I have cooked loads of turkeys but this will be first on convection. I have an almost 21# bird in the freezer (moving to frig tomorrow -Sunday). I usually brine but wanted to use less this year to be able to use the broth/drippings. I usually start breast-side down. I just read Pioneer Woman's article on trussing, so I am planning on doing that. I don't stuff but am open to the idea of putting butter and/or stuffing under the skin. (If it was going to be stuffed under the skin right before roasting, wouldn't it be okay to use my own stuffing recipe with eggs?) I have a digital probe thermometer that will beep when the set temp is reached. Question- How much salt is enough in brine solution and yet not too much to make the broth overly salty? I like MOIST flavorful turkey- I love gravy. I cannot stand the chokingly dry white meat my in-laws served years ago. ugh. That's what I really want to avoid.

  • schneibe

    christina22_gw --- I don't know if you're still reading this thread, but your picture of turkeys looks FABULOUS. I sure hope mine turns about as beautifully. I might even consider buying a small fresh turkey and doing it tomorrow- just to see how it goes. I could give leftovers to kids, right? Sort of a trial run.

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