turkey on farm at sunset

How to Deep Fry Turkey

How to Deep Fry Turkey: A New Safer Way - Indoors

For turkey frying techniques and recipes: Click Here

Our answer to how to deep fry turkey for years has been the same: carefully - outdoors - away from the house and anything else that is flammable.


The recent drought was one factor that led us to search for an alternative to using hot oil and flames.

We have watched the videos of the oil hitting the flame and starting an uncontrollable fire. We were aware that Underwriters Laboratories found the process so dangerous that they decided not to certify any propane based deep fried turkey system. We watched Alton Brown set up a system of dropping and retrieving the turkey into and out of hot oil that didn't require him to be in the same vicinity as the pot. But despite the danger we loved the result - a delicious deep fried turkey.

What we didn't like about the process was the propane. Our grilling and smoking is typically done with wood and charcoal so to make a turkey we needed to invest in and maintain two propane tanks (two because we had to be prepared for one to run out.) And we needed a safe place to store the tanks. We had to keep a tank full and maintain the regulator and hose. (If you already do propane grilling this is not an additional concern for you.)

deep fried turkey in basket


We also didn't like handling the large quantity of oil required for our previous set-up. It was expensive, it was heavy, and it was a bother to clean.

This system worked for years - but, was there anything new, different, interesting, safer?

Is there an alternative system answering the question of how to deep fry turkey?

How about an oil-less infrared system that promises to cook your turkey in 8 to 10 minutes per pound?

The advantage is no oil - and it does free up your indoor oven.

The disadvantage is no oil - it does not have that special flavor of a deep fried turkey.

Okay I have to admit I have not had a turkey from this infrared oil-less cooker. I am basing my speculation on the fact that I have had oven baked "French fries." They don't taste bad - but they are not the same as fried fries. The oil (especially peanut oil traditionally used to deep fry turkey adds a dimension that you do not get from an oven. And since there is no oil, this device is an oven. I assume that the infrared system does a good job of producing crispy skin.

If you have had a turkey from an oil-less (sometimes called oil free turkey cooker) please let us know if I am mistaken about the taste and I will be happy to add your information and reviews.

From reviews we have read this is a high heat outdoor oven. It cooks quickly, but no more quickly than our high temperature roasted turkey recipe which can be made in your indoor oven. Also, cooking is not as quick as a true deep fried turkey. You also have the propane hassle with at least some models of this cooker. Using propane, it is for outdoor use only.

Our Choice

Our new choice for how to deep fry turkey is this : Masterbuilt 20010109 Butterball Professional Series Indoor Electric Turkey Fryer


No Propane

CSA Approved

Uses 33 % Less Oil than traditional models

Quick cooking.

Versatile: Can be used to boil or steam or for other deep frying (fish and chips.).


Smaller unit than the traditional outdoor models. Will handle up to a 14 pound turkey but a 10 - 12 pound birds are recommended.

Uses hot oil - so caution is necessary, and can make area of use greasy.

Here are our thoughts about and experience whith this product:

Turkey Fryer Box

After reading the reviews we decided to get the Butterball Turkey Fryer. We couldn't wait to see if this indoor turkey fryer would provide the same results as the outdoor fryer we have used for years. Might this be our new answer to how to deep fry turkey?

This product doesn't just fry turkeys. It can be used to deep fry just about anything. And it can be used as a steamer, or to do clam or crab boils as well.

drain compartment

The fryer is very well designed.There is removable door that covers the connector used to drain and filter the oil after you are done cooking. The removable door unit itself has compartments to house the drain spout and the magnetic power cord. The connector for the power cord attaches magnetically to the fryer to prevent accidentally pulling the unit off of the counter.



Control attached

control removed

To make the unit easy to clean, the heating element is easily removable, so that you can wash the rest of the unit without fear of getting the electronics wet.


waiting to fry


The basket that goes into the oil is turkey shaped. Which makes it easy to position the turkey so that it will be fully immersed in the oil. It uses much less oil than an outdoor propane turkey fryer.


deep fried turkey

The oil takes about 30 minutes to heat, and the turkey takes between 3 to 4 minutes per pound to cook. There is a handle included to make it easy to lift the turkey out of the oil, hang the basket above the oil, and take a temperature reading with an instant read thermometer (not included). It is just as easy to return the turkey to the oil if more cooking is necessary.

We found thiis product well designed, easy to use. It gave the same delicious deep fried turkey result that we have been getting for years with the propane outdoor fryer unit.

Be sure to read the operation manual and safety instructions that come with this electric indoor fryer.

Our new answer to how to deep fry turkey. This is the likely the way we will be deep frying turkey from now on.

To prepare your turkey for deep frying CLICK HERE

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Copyright © 2009 - 2019 The Perfect Turkey
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