How to Cook a Whole Turkey: Watch Chefs at Work

It's a daunting moment. That annual challenge of how to cook a whole turkey for a feast that'll go down in the annals of time.

If you're having sleepless nights about tackle the 14lb bird whole this Christmas, keeping it moist and tender yet also cooked right through, take a moment and heed a little advice from some industry experts. After all, there's no dress rehearsal for this annual cook in.

We've gathered a selection of videos from chefs sharing their top tips and techniques learn by experience, that'll take the heat out of the day.

So let Alton Brown, Gordon Ramsay and seasoned professionals show how to cook a turkey whole without breaking a sweat. Aluminium foil, butter, and thermometers at the ready!


First up, Andy from Bon Appetit, cooks a 14lb turkey in a traditional and classic method using a dry brine (2 days before cooking) for a crisp skin. Top tip - use brown sugar to make the skin crispy and a simple sweet and savoury glaze to yield an even dark mahogany colour.

Alton Brown offers up some tips on how to thoroughly cook the dark meat without overcooking the white meat. The answer - the turkey triangle! Discover this and more in the entertaining clip below.

Join Gordon Ramsay at home on Christmas day morning as he demonstrates how to lock in moisture into the bird during cooking. A flavoured butter with olive oil, lemon, parsley and garlic are the magic mixture pushed between the skin and the flesh that lock in moisture.

Jamie Oliver cooks a fail-safe 7kg turkey in the clip below. Be sure to get the turkey out of the fridge hours before you need to cook it he advises. While plenty of butter and minimal stuffing ensure air flow and even cooking.

The team over at Great British Chefs take a different approach by cooking the turkey whole on a vegetable trivet plus harnessing the power of a steam oven for effective cooking of the whole turkey.