You can keep a thawed, uncooked turkey in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days before cooking. If you purchase a fresh (not frozen) turkey, be sure to use it before the date on the label. If you’re using a cooler for temporary turkey storage, consider keeping this cooler separate for raw poultry and meat only.
Can I keep a fresh turkey in the fridge for a week?
No, it isn’t convenient. But it’s reality. The issue with keeping a fresh, raw turkey in your refrigerator for more than a couple of days isn’t the pathogens that cause food poisoning, says Ben Chapman, the N.C. State University food-safety extension specialist. The problem is spoiled meat.
How far in advance can I buy a fresh turkey?
How far in advance can I buy a fresh turkey? If you want to buy a fresh turkey, wait until the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.
How long will a fresh turkey keep?
If you are not confident about the temperature of your refrigerator, cook or freeze the turkey within 4 days of sell-by date. Storage of Leftovers: Carve leftover turkey into pieces before refrigerating to speed cooling. Refrigerate carved leftovers within 2 hours of eating. Use leftover turkey within 3 days.
How long can a thawed turkey sit in the refrigerator?
Place it on a tray to catch any juices that may leak. A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days. If necessary, a turkey that has been properly thawed in the refrigerator may be refrozen.
Is fresh turkey better than frozen?
Fresh turkeys will hold their moisture better than frozen turkeys, bringing out a meaty texture with deeper natural flavors. … If a frozen turkey melts and refreezes, formation of ice crystals in the muscles can occur, making for tough meat. Frozen turkeys are best when flash-frozen packaged immediately to 0°F.
How do you know if a fresh turkey has gone bad?
Many times people can tell if a turkey is spoiled by the “texture and smell” of the turkey. Hanes said the skin of the turkey may become slimy, and the smell is often described as “rotten eggs or like sulfur.”
Should I freeze a fresh turkey?
Freezing a turkey is the best way to retain its quality and freshness until you’re ready to use it. If you don’t plan on using the turkey right away, keep it on ice. Wrap fresh turkeys up before storing them in the freezer. Fresh turkeys are safe to store in the freezer, including hunted ones.
How do you store fresh turkey?
Proper Storage. A fresh whole turkey or fresh turkey parts may be stored in the refrigerator at 33°F to 40°F for 1 or 2 days before cooking. It is best to place turkey products in the coldest part of the refrigerator, which is usually the meat drawer or the bottom shelf.
How long can a fresh Butterball Turkey stay in the refrigerator?
“In the refrigerator, for best quality, you want to use them in about three days. If it’s more than you know you’re going to be using in that period of time, cut it up, put it in meal-sized packages, and put it in the freezer. Then you can have Thanksgiving turkey stew or turkey barbecue.”
What happens if you eat bad turkey?
“If you do eat a food past the expiration date [and the food] is spoiled, you could develop symptoms of food poisoning,” said registered dietitian nutritionist Summer Yule, MS. The symptoms of foodborne illness can include fever, chills, stomach cramps, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
Should I rinse my turkey before cooking?
Wash Hands and Surfaces; not the Turkey
According to the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service, washing raw poultry, beef, pork, lamb, or veal before cooking it is not recommended. Bacteria in raw meat and poultry juices can be spread to other foods, utensils, and surfaces.
How long does it take a 20 pound turkey to thaw in the refrigerator?
Thawing in the refrigerator is the ONLY recommended way to defrost a frozen turkey. For it to work, however, you’ll need plenty of time: 24 hours of defrosting time for every 4 to 5 pounds of bird. A large turkey, say, 15 to 20 pounds, will need to spend 4 to 5 days in the refrigerator.