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Deep-Fried Cajun Turkey

Revamp the standard turkey by coating it in Cajun spices. Be cautious when lowering the bird into the fryer.

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  • Makes: 10 servings
  • Prep: 30 mins
  • Cook: 24 mins
  • Stand: 15 mins

Deep-Fried Cajun Turkey



  1. Remove the neck and giblets from the turkey. Rinse inside of turkey; pat dry with paper towels. If present, remove and discard the plastic leg holder and pop-up timer.
  2. Preheat oil to 350 degrees F.
  3. For rub, in a small bowl combine salt, paprika, thyme, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper. Slip your fingers between turkey skin and meat to loosen the skin over the breast and leg areas. Lift skin and spread some of the rub directly over breast, thigh, and drumstick meat. Season body cavity with any remaining rub. Tuck the ends of the drumsticks under the band of skin across the tail or tie legs to tail with 100-percent-cotton string. Twist wing tips under back.
  4. Place turkey, breast side up, in basket. Slowly lower basket into hot oil. Be cautious of splattering oil. Maintain oil temperature around 350 degrees F. Fry turkey for 24 to 30 minutes (3 minutes per pound). Remove turkey from hot oil to check doneness. Insert a meat thermometer into the meaty part of the thigh. Turkey is done when thermometer registers 180 degrees F.
  5. Remove turkey from hot oil; drain on wire rack. If the turkey has not reached 180 degrees F when you check for doneness, remove the thermometer and slowly lower the turkey back into the oil. Fry 3 to 5 minutes more and check temperature again. Let stand 15 minutes before carving. Makes 10 to 12 servings

From the Test Kitchen

Turkey Breast Option:

Use a 4-pound whole turkey breast with bone. Rinse and pat dry with paper towels. If present, remove pop-up timer. Preheat oil to 350 degrees F. Prepare spice mixture and rub turkey as above. Place in basket and cook as above for 32 minutes (8 minutes per pound) to 170 degrees F. Makes 8 to 10 servings

Nutrition Facts (Deep-Fried Cajun Turkey)

    Per serving:
  • 553 kcal cal.,
  • 33 g fat
  • (7 g sat. fat,
  • 10 g polyunsaturated fat,
  • 14 g monounsatured fat),
  • 220 mg chol.,
  • 468 mg sodium,
  • 1 g carb.,
  • 61 g pro.
  • Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet



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