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Cooking Turkey Upside Down Recipes

Cooking Turkey Upside Down Recipes

Last Updated on 22nd April 2022 by

Cooking Turkey Upside Down Recipes

What does Thanksgiving dinner consist of if there is no turkey? The American custom of eating turkey for dinner on Thanksgiving has become a tradition. Every year, on Thanksgiving, each family roasts a turkey.

Turkeys have been associated with Thanksgiving since the American Indians celebrated the harvest with a feast during the autumn. According to popular belief, Sarah Josepha Hale is the person responsible for Thanksgiving turkey feasts. 

Do you remember how your turkey turned out this Thanksgiving? If you tend to mess up something occasionally, you don’t need to worry. To prepare a perfect turkey dinner, even the most seasoned chefs must put in a great deal of time and effort. 

To begin with, roasting a turkey upside down saves it from turning out dry. Then, after working so hard, does anyone want to hear complaints? Not me, for sure. 

Spinach salad, couscous salad, garlic bread, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, and baked sweet potatoes are all good complements to turkey. 

baked turkey coming out in the oven
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Cooking Turkey Upside Down Recipes

Let us look at a delicious upside-down turkey recipe. Firstly, how to confirm if your turkey is upside down: It is simple: when the wings are up, and the legs are down, the turkey is upside down. The recipe is not very different from the conventional turkey recipe.
Preparation and cooking of this recipe will take 2 and 3 hours, respectively. It yields 10 to 12 servings. Let us go through the recipe now. Also, do keep in mind this recipe doesn’t include the gravy. Scroll down to read that.


  • 14 pounds One whole turkey
  • Kosher Salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • One onion
  • One apple
  • Fresh thyme
  • Fresh rosemary
  • Chopped carrot


  • Defrost the turkey if you are going to use it frozen. Even though it may seem untrue, 14 pounds of meat take up to 3 days to defrost. 
  • It’s time to prep the turkey before sending it to the oven. Take out the neck and giblets from the bird’s cavity. Before doing anything else, wash the turkey well. Pat it dry. Place a roasting rack on a large roasting pan. Prepare the roasting rack and place the turkey on top. Brush olive oil all over the turkey. Now, rub three to four tablespoons of Kosher salt on the inside and outside. Fill the cavity with the quartered apple, onion, thyme, carrot, and rosemary. Place the turkey upside down. Tie the legs together. At this point, let it sit at room temperature for two hours. 
  • Preheat the oven. Roast the turkey for about half an hour at 400 degrees F. Set the temperature at 325 degrees F and continue to roast for two more hours. 
  • Now that it has been two hours, check the temperature of the turkey. One hundred sixty-five degrees F is the recommended internal temperature, which comes from the USDA. You’re done cooking your turkey if it says so! Make sure you check both the thighs and the breasts.
  • You can now remove the turkey from the oven. Allow it to sit undisturbed for about 20 minutes. Slice the turkey and serve. Garnish with some fresh herbs for extra points.

baked turkey coming out in the oven

Tips For Making The Turkey Taste Great

To know when to stop cooking, use a meat thermometer. Why leave room for guesswork? Get one today if you don’t have one. A perfect temperature inside a chicken is 165 degrees Fahrenheit, as previously mentioned. Checking will prevent two worse-case scenarios, undercooking and overcooking.

Cover the turkey with a foil sheet smeared with olive oil. I am not mentioning a foil size since you know the size of the turkey better. Put foil over the turkey and cover it with it. You’re right; the oiled side does come down. So what is the point of all this? Oiling is yet another tried and tested method for preventing the turkey from getting dry. 

Large birds are usually not very tender. Choosing two small birds is the best option if you want to minimize your risk. They will certainly be softer. 

Although this one is obvious, remove 1 or 2 racks from your oven, depending on how big your turkey is. 

Cooking A Turkey Upside Down For The First Hour

If you want your turkey to be juicy, roast it upside down for the first 45 minutes before turning it over. As a result, all the turkey’s juices will accumulate in the breast. If you cook your turkey upside down, you are bound to get the juiciest bird you have ever tasted. 

Cooking Turkey Upside Down Recipe

The upside-down turkey recipe can also be adapted by substituting butter and lemon juice for olive oil. In step 2 of the recipe, as mentioned earlier, heat a pan and melt the butter. Next, squeeze one lemon juice and add a few thyme leaves. Put this mixture aside for a while as you do the subsequent steps. Instead of brushing olive oil on the turkey, brush this mixture. Follow all other steps as it is.

checking turkeys cooking temp

Cooking A Turkey Upside Down With Gravy

Whether you want gravy or not is up to you. Let me introduce you to the method of making gravy. As the turkey rests after Step 4, place a thick pan on the stove.

Remove about four tablespoons of the turkey’s fat and drippings and place them in a skillet. You can thicken this with cornstarch after it has been heated for a while. Let the flour darken a little. Stirring constantly, gradually add three cups of water to the mixture. Stir the mixture until there are no lumps. You can add pepper, salt, and different herbs based on your personal preference. Be sure to stir well before shutting off the flame.

Here you have it, mouth-watering gravy! Cut the turkey into slices. Garnish the dish with fresh herbs and plate it. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!


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I'm Pauline, a mother of four grown children, my passion for cooking stemmed from the joy i get cooking for my family. I love to try new dishes, especially when dining out but creating and sharing my own recipes is my favourite thing to do!

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