How Long To Cook A 20 Pound Turkey (And Why)?

How Long To Cook A 20 Pound Turkey (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 4.5-5 Hours

Turkey is a type of meat mostly consumed in North America. They are like poultry chicken but are bigger in size as compared to chickens. Most of the time domesticated turkeys are consumed but some people also consume wild turkey too.

They are widely consumed in some traditional events like thanksgiving, and Christmas with family and friends. They have all the features same as chickens like a head, feather, and feet are removed before consumption. The taste differs between domestic turkey and wild turkey. When it is cooked properly its meat is less moist than chicken and ducks after proper cooking.

How Long To Cook A 20 Pound Turkey

How Long To Cook a 20 Pound Turkey?

Many people consume frozen turkey which is used in slices of sandwich meat that are curved as cold cuts. They are sometimes used as a good substitute for chickens in many places. Many people consume ground beef as an alternative to ground turkey due to some better nutritional values used as food portions in marketplaces. In the cooking process of turkey, it is very important to keep watch on it until the complete process is done because it can ruin the moisture content of the flesh which would taste like rubber.

Turkey has a great taste and its flavor differs from season to season. In the summer seasons, the taste of turkey gets gamier due to the increased consumption of insects and worms in their diets over the preceding months. The wild turkey has a milder taste than the domesticated because they only fed with grass and grain. the difference in flavor also comes with older heritage breeds. The turkey with dark meat in color has a more intense flavor.

Turkey is a good meat product with good nutritional value. They are compared with chickens like it has 47% water, 1% fat, 111 kilocalories, 20% protein, vitamin B6, niacin, phosphorous, and a moderate amount of 19% pantothenic acid, and some amount of zinc.

They do not have carbohydrate presence in them at all. The turkey which is consumed can be baked or roasted for several hours to get the proper taste. The cooking time and temperature depend on a factor that is the color of the meat. The dark-colored meat needs high temperature than the light-colored meat. The color is due to the pigmentation of myoglobin.

WeightCook Time
12 Pounds3 to 3.5 Hours
14 Pounds3.5 Hours 4.5 Hours
18 Pounds4.5 Hours
20 Pounds4.5 to 5 hours
24 Pounds5.5 Hours to 6 Hours

Why Does A 20 Pound Of Turkey Take That Long To Cook?

The 20 pounds of turkey takes this much time because of its weight. If turkey of low weight is cooked that it takes less time to be cooked. The time is also dependent on the pieces. There are two types of turkey with two types of skin color is a domesticated and wild turkey, with meat color dark and light. The pigment called myoglobin is responsible for the color of the meat which defines the taste and the time period for cooking.

Consuming meat for the nutrition and taste is good but it is really important that it should be properly cooked or you may have to face some serious health issue in your life which may be temporary or permanent. Raw meat is a carrier of some harmful bacterias like salmonella which is a common poultry bacteria found in uncooked and undercooked meat like chicken, turkey, and duck. This bacteria can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and severe abdominal cramps.


Eating raw meat is the most common reason for food poisoning causing severe diarrhea. If you are suffering from salmonella food poisoning he or she has to be very careful about your food because at this point your digestive system is quite weak. They should consume food like bananas, rice, and more fluid which can be easily digested without any further problems. If you are having antibiotics for diarrhea then it can cause prolong carrier state for the person.


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