Cooking Turkey in an Electric Roaster - U of I Extension

News Release

Cooking Turkey in an Electric Roaster

This article was originally published on December 7, 2007 and expired on December 21, 2007. It is provided here for archival purposes and may contain dated information.

The electric roaster oven serves as an extra oven to cook the turkey or roast. According to Jananne Finck, University of Illinois Extension nutrition and wellness educator, Springfield Center, the cooking time and oven temperature setting are usually the same as conventional cooking. Always check the roaster's use and care manual for manufacturer's recommended temperature setting and temperature.

Before cooking, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends preheating the electric roaster oven to at least 325 degrees F. Place the turkey on the roaster oven's rack or other meat rack so the juices will collect in the bottom of the oven liner. Leave the lid on throughout cooking, removing it as little as possible to avoid slowing the cooking process.

Cooking bags can be used in the roaster oven as long as the bag doesn't touch the sides, bottom or lid. Follow directions given by the cooking bag manufacturer, and use a meat thermometer to be sure the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast reaches the safe minimum internal temperature of 165 F.

DO NOT use brown paper bags for cooking, cautions USDA. They are not sanitary, may cause a fire and may emit toxic fumes. Intense heat may cause a bag to ignite, causing a fire in the oven. Plus–the ink, glue and recycled materials in paper bags can give-off toxic fumes when they are exposed to heat. Instead, use commercial oven cooking bags found in your local grocery store.

For more information on cooking turkey, call the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-888-674-6854 (1-888-MPHotline), Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Eastern Time. USDA information is also available at:

University of Illinois Extension features turkey information in English and Spanish, including recipes at:

Pull date: December 21, 2007