How to Roast a Turkey

Keep it simple for the best roast turkey.  A little basting, preferably overnight, then a hot roast in the oven.  Nothing flash – let the best quality free range meat speak for itself.  Try and get something from a local farm shop – it’s well worth it!

I like this hot roast – it takes much less time in the oven, leaving valuable time and oven space for all of the other accompaniments

Calculate your total cooking time from the table below.  To this, you’ll need to add 30 minutes resting time, plus a little more if you want to ensure that the bird will cook in time.  Take this from your proposed serving time to establish when the bird needs to go into the oven

Turkey Roasting Times

Turkey weight Feeds People Cooking time  (excludes resting)
2kg (4lb 7oz) 4-5 1hr 50mins
2.5kg (5lb 8oz) 5-6 2hrs
3kg (6lb 10oz) 6-7 2hrs 10mins
3.5kg (7lb 11oz) 7-8 2hrs 20mins
4kg (8lb 13oz) 8-9 2hrs 50mins
4.5kg (9lb 15oz) 9-10 3hrs
5kg (11lb 0oz) 10-11 3hrs 10mins
5.5kg (12lb 2oz) 11-12 3hrs 20mins
6kg (13lb 4oz) 12-13 3hrs 30mins
6.5kg (14lb 5oz) 14-15 3hrs 40mins
7kg (15lb 7oz) 15-16 3hrs 50mins
7.5kg (16lb 9oz) 16-17 4hrs
8kg (17lb 10oz)   4hrs 10mins
8.5kg (18lb 12oz)   4hrs 20mins
9kg (19lb 13oz)   4hrs 30mins
9.5kg (20lb 15oz)   4hrs 40mins
10kg (22lb 1oz)   4hrs 50mins


  • 1 Free Range, locally sourced Bronze Turkey
  • 125g Butter
  • 2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 2 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 3 Onions
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 ltr Boiling Water


  • Mix the butter, salt and pepper to form a paste
  • Halve the onions and place in the bottom of a roasting tin to form a trivet. Place the turkey on top
  • Smear the butter paste over the bird and put the whole lemon in the cavity.  Set aside for a couple of hours, covered, or ideally overnight
  • Pre-heat the oven to 180oC Fan
  • Pour about 1/3 of the water inside the cavity, and the rest into the base of the tray.  Cover the breast of the bird with a double thickness sheet of baking parchment to prevent burning, and seal the whole baking tray with foil
  • Use your calculated total roasting time to work out when you need to put the bird into the oven & roast.
  • Remove the foil & parchment for the last 40 minutes
  • Check that the bird is cooked by skewering the thickest part of the leg.  If the juices are pink, cook for a further 15 minutes and try again until the juices run clear
  • Remove from the oven and set the bird aside for 15-30 minutes to rest before carving

Merry Christmas!!!






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