Roast Turkey, 8-10 Pounds


Thanksgiving is synonymous with turkey, and this simple recipe is the best way to cook a turkey.

Roast Turkey, 8- 10-Pound
Photo: Jason Donnelly
Prep Time:
15 mins
Roast Time:
2 hrs 45 mins
Stand Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 15 mins

Of course roast turkey is a Thanksgiving essential. It's always the visual star of the table, surrounded by your favorite side dishes. But a smaller turkey, like an 8- to 10-pound turkey is a standout entrée for many occasions. Though the recipe takes a while to come together, most of that time is hands-off roasting time, leaving you free to whip up appetizers, side dishes, or desserts for a dinner party, a big family Sunday dinner, or any day you'll be home for a few hours to keep an eye on the turkey as it roasts.

If you know an 8 to 10-pound turkey is the size you need for your gathering, the next step is determining how long to cook a 10 lb. turkey. (Determine how much turkey you need for your group, if you're unsure.) Whether your bird is stuffed or unstuffed, we've got the cooking times for your turkey. As a general rule, stuffed birds need 15 to 45 minutes more roasting time than unstuffed ones. Since you're working with a smaller bird, your 10 lb. turkey should be on the lower range of that extra time, if added a stuffing inside. Don't forget to let it stand before carving to let the juices redistribute for the most tender results.


  • 1 (8-10 pound) turkey

  • Salt (optional)

  • Stuffing (optional)

  • Cooking oil


  1. Pat turkey dry on the inside and out with paper towels. If desired, season body cavity with salt.

  2. Spoon your desired stuffing recipe (if using) loosely into the cavity. Skewer neck skin of turkey to back.

  3. Tuck the ends of the drumsticks under the band of skin across the tail. If there is no band of skin, tie the drumsticks securely to the tail using 100%-cotton kitchen string.

  4. Twist wing tips under the back.

  5. Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Brush with oil.

  6. If desired, insert an oven-going meat thermometer into the center of an inside thigh muscle. (The thermometer should not touch bone.) Cover turkey loosely with foil, leaving air space between the bird and the foil. Lightly press foil at the ends of the drumsticks and neck to enclose the turkey.

  7. Roast in a 325°F oven for 2-1/4 hours. Remove foil; cut band of skin or string between drumsticks so thighs cook evenly. Continue roasting for 30 to 45 minutes more (1 to 1-1/4 hours if stuffed) uncovered, or until the thermometer registers at least 175°F; and the center of the stuffing (if using) is 165°F. (The juices should run clear and drumsticks should move easily in their sockets.)

  8. Remove turkey from oven. Cover with foil; let stand for 15 to 20 minutes before carving. Transfer turkey to a cutting board. Carve the turkey.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

1087 Calories
44g Fat
0g Carbs
162g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 1087.1
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 43.7g 56%
Saturated Fat 12.3g 62%
Cholesterol 618mg 206%
Sodium 584mg 25%
Total Carbohydrate 0.3g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 161.9g
Vitamin D 2.3mcg 11%
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 79.4mg 6%
Iron 6.2mg 34%
Potassium 1355.1mg 29%
Fatty acids, total trans 0.6g
Vitamin D 85IU
Alanine 8.9g
Arginine 9.2g
Ash 6.7g
Aspartic acid 12.7g
Caffeine 0mg
Carotene, alpha 0mcg
Choline, total 495.5mg
Copper, Cu 0.5mg
Cystine 1.5g
Energy 4544kJ
Folate, total 51mcg
Glutamic acid 21.5g
Glycine 8.1g
Histidine 4.2g
Isoleucine 4.5g
Leucine 10.9g
Lysine 12.9g
Methionine 4.1g
Magnesium, Mg 170.1mg
Manganese, Mn 0.1mg
Niacin 54.3mg
Phosphorus, P 1264.4mg
Pantothenic acid 5.4mg
Phenylalanine 5.1g
Proline 9.3g
Retinol 68mcg
Selenium, Se 169mcg
Serine 6.3g
Theobromine 0mg
Threonine 5.7g
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) 0.8mg
Tryptophan 1.6g
Tyrosine 4.6g
Valine 5.1g
Vitamin A, IU 221.1IU
Vitamin A, RAE 68mcg
Vitamin B-12 5.8mcg
Vitamin B-6 3.5mg
Vitamin K (phylloquinone) 0mcg
Water 360.2g
Zinc, Zn 14.1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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