FUELING THE FUTURE: DUNKIN’ UNVEILS ITS NEWEST TEAM OF 17 STUDENT ATHLETES FROM SIX SPORTS
Scooter’s Coffee® Presents $277,032 Donation to The Pink Agenda to Support Breast Cancer Awareness and Life-Saving Research

How to Cook Turkey Stuffing Safely

StuffingHere’s an important Thanksgiving food safety tip that will surprise many: USDA doesn’t recommend stuffing a whole turkey. The practice increases the risk of cross-contamination and takes the turkey longer to cook. Cook stuffing separately instead.

But if you decide to stuff your turkey, we recommend the following:

  • Don’t stuff a turkey the night before cooking it. Bacteria can multiply in the stuffing and cause foodborne illness when a stuffed bird is refrigerated.
    • The wet and dry ingredients for the stuffing should be prepared separately and refrigerated until ready to use. Mixing dry and wet ingredients produces an environment that bacteria may thrive in hours before cooking.
    • Fully cook raw meat, poultry, or seafood ingredients before adding to stuffing.
    • Combine the ingredients and place them in your bird immediately before cooking. Don’t stuff whole poultry with cooked stuffing.
    • In addition to the turkey, the stuffing’s center needs to reach 165 F.

Here are timetables for turkey roasting based on a 325 F oven temperature:

Unstuffed

8 to 12 pounds — 2¾ to 3 hours

12 to 14 pounds — 3 to 3¾ hours

14 to 18 pounds — 3¾ to 4¼ hours

18 to 20 pounds — 4¼ to 4½ hours

20 to 24 pounds — 4½ to 5 hours

Stuffed

8 to 12 pounds — 3 to 3½ hours

12 to 14 pounds — 3½ to 4 hours

14 to 18 pounds — 4 to 4¼ hours

18 to 20 pounds — 4¼ to 4¾ hours

20 to 24 pounds — 4¾ to 5¼ hours

For more Thanksgiving tips, check out our fact sheet. Read our latest USDA study on safe food handling.

For more information, contact the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) to talk to a food safety specialist or chat live at ask.usda.gov from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. On Thanksgiving Day, the Hotline will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Eastern Time.

Access news releases and other information at USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service’s (FSIS) website at www.fsis.usda.gov/newsroom. Follow FSIS on X at X @usdafoodsafety or in Spanish at: X @usdafoodsafe_es.

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.

#

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)