Can I cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer?

Air fryers are a hot trend in the kitchen, and you may be wondering how they work and what they can do for you. An air fryer is a kitchen appliance designed to fry food in just a fraction of the time. They are designed to cook food quickly without as much oil and grease, and they are a fantastic alternative to a deep fryer or stovetop. They cook food at a lower temperature, requiring little fat, and they can cook a whole turkey in less than an hour.

Can I cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer? Yes, you can cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer. The key is to use the correct size of Air Fryer to accommodate the turkey’s size. If you are cooking a 5kg or lower turkey, you will want to use a 2-quart capacity Air Fryer (like the Philips XL). If your turkey weighs more than 5kg, you will need an 8-quart capacity Air Fryer like the Philips Viva.

Depending on the size of the turkey, it will take about 1 hour per pound. You will need to preheat your Air Fryer for about 15 minutes before cooking your turkey. Make sure you have a meat thermometer to check the internal temp once the turkey is cooked. The meat thermometer should read at least 165 degrees F in order to ensure that it is fully cooked and safe to eat.

The Air Fryer will cook evenly with very little oil needed (depending on how much you baste with). I would recommend cooking the turkey on a baking sheet in the Air Fryer for easier clean-up. You can also cook the turkey breast side down first to help it achieve a more even cooking process.

Can I cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer?

How big of an air fryer do I need for a turkey?

If you’re thinking of buying an air-fryer, you might be considering how big an air-fryer do I need for a turkey. Or maybe for your whole holiday dinner. Let’s break it down to answer these questions.

If you are cooking a 5kg or lower turkey, you will want to use a 10 to 12-quart capacity Air Fryer (like the Ninja DT201 Foodi 10-in-1 XL Pro Air Fry Digital Countertop Convection Toaster Oven). If your turkey weighs more than 5kg, you will need a 12 to 26-quart capacity Air Fryer like the Kalorik MAXX® Complete Digital Air Fryer Oven. For easier frying, select a fryer with enough room that allows you to place the turkey on the rack. Just make sure there’s enough space to cook it throughout (without liquid pooling). Don’t forget, an air fryer cooks meat in a circulating hot air current rather than deep-frying it

The size of the fryer matters because if it is too small, you will have to cook your turkey in batches, meaning that once your meat is cooked and done cooking in the fryer, you will have to pluck it out and cook it again another time.

If the size of your fryer is too big, you will have a lot of turkey leftovers to cook and eat. If it is too small, you may freeze some of the meat that you would’ve frozen; if it’s too big, there will probably be too much turkey for your holiday dinner.

How to cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer

It’s no secret that Air Fryers have become the hottest kitchen gadget in recent years. Whether they’re good for cooking veg or not is a whole other subject. With just some oil and a few simple steps, you can cook a whole turkey with this kitchen marvel without even turning on the oven.

Here are 7 basic tips to help your Air Fryer turkey be the best it can be, from prepping to cleanup:

1. The perfect cutting board

Wooden cutting boards are best for oil-free cooking. If it is a non-stick Air Fryer, you can use only wooden spoons and forks. Especially with a big bird, you don’t want to make any scratches or have any kind of debris go into your sauteeing juices. You can also use plastic utensils that are safe on non-stick surfaces.

2. The perfect container

The container for a turkey in an Air Fryer is pretty simple: you want to make sure that the bird can sit in it without being too loose or having too much extra room. If there’s extra room, the turkey can dry out because there’s not enough oil to help it cook. Also, you’ll want to figure on about 1 cup of liquid per pound of meat.

3. Keeping it clean

For drippings, you can strain the fat and save the juices. Then use them in a pan in the oven to get nice skin on your bird. You can also just discard them if you are worried about extra calories. It’s up to you!

The best way to wash an Air Fryer is with hot, soapy water. If you’re using non-stick, make sure not to use too much soap or put anything in the dishwasher as this could damage the coating.

4. The perfect time

You can check the meat is done by poking it with your finger or sticking a thermometer into the thickest part of the breast. For a 12-pound turkey, cook with heat set at 380 degrees for 8 – 10 minutes per pound which is equivalent to about 140 minutes for a 12-pound turkey. So for two and a half hours, your turkey should be done.

5. The perfect size

Make sure if you have an Air Fryer that can cook a turkey that it comes with a rack. Depending on the size of your bird, you may also want the extra room so that it doesn’t cook in a pool of its own juices. You can dump out and empty the drippings halfway through cooking or put the turkey breast side up halfway through cooking.

6. The perfect time for the side

There are many reports of taking the sides out when you start to get a nice Maillard reaction on the top and then putting them back in to get them warm before serving. Others swear by leaving the sides in all the way through. It’s really up to you and your taste buds!

7. The perfect dinnertime

You can’t beat a nice roasted turkey breast with all the trimmings to round out your Thanksgiving celebration. If you plan it right, you can have crisp golden skin and juicy turkey meat in the same amount of time as it would normally take to do just one or the other. That means more time for football, shopping for last-minute ingredients, or just hanging out with the family!

With all those tips in mind, it is really easy to cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer. Just remember to check it often and keep an eye on the temperature and don’t forget to let it rest a few hours before serving.

To keep your Air Fryer clean, I would recommend pre-cleaning it out before and after each use. I would wash my Air Fryer with an all-purpose dish liquid and add a few drops of white vinegar before using it again. Be sure to let dry completely before storing.

If you are using both the top and bottom rack for cooking, I would recommend using small trivets or ramekins to keep the food elevated from the bottom rack. This will help cook evenly and prevent oil splatter on your Air Fryer’s heating element.

Conclusion: Can I cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer?

Yes, a whole turkey will fit in most Air Fryers. Just remember that some models of air fryers have a maximum capacity or size. Also, make sure that your turkey doesn’t exceed the size of the basket in your Air Fryer.

Angela Jones
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2 thoughts on “Can I cook a whole turkey in an Air Fryer?”

  1. How did you come up with a 12-pound turkey taking only 2.5 hours to cook (at 380 degrees) if you’re saying it needs 30 minutes per pound?


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