Cooking a turkey at high altitude in a electric roaster oven

Asked November 20, 2018, 2:38 PM EST

How long would I cook and a 19 pounds turkey in a roaster oven when I live at 7500 feet elevation

Fremont County Colorado

1 Response

It is difficult to tell you how long it will take to cook a 19 pound turkey at 7500 feet elevation because of different cooking temperatures. As you are probably aware, due to less oxygen and atmospheric pressure, your cooking temperature will be lower than if you were at sea level. So it is probably safe to say it will take longer than what most of the guidelines say. The best way to determine when you turkey is done is to check the internal temperature. Turkey needs to reach a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit to be safe although most people prefer it cooked to a higher temperature (~180 degrees) because there is sometime some pink when only cooked to 165 degrees. (Bon Appetit has some additional tips that may be helpful to you

How to Take the Temperature

The best way to check the temperature of a turkey to to stick an instant-read thermometer in the meatiest part of the thigh. This is a part of the turkey that cooks the slowest and is also one of the thickest. That means if it's at the right temperature, you can be sure the rest of the turkey has also finished cooking.
    1. Insert your instant-read thermometer into the thigh meat so that the thermometer is parallel to the body of the turkey. You should feel some resistance as it goes into the meat. If it suddenly slides very easy, that means you've poked through into the turkey cavity. If you hit something solid, that means you've come to a bone. In either case, pull back a little so the thermometer is in the meat of the thigh.
    2. Also, make sure you know where the temperature sensor is on your thermometer. Some have it at the tip and others have it about half an inch above the tip. The whole temperature sensor needs to be in contact with the meat of the turkey to get an accurate temperature.
    3. Hold the thermometer still: Keep the thermometer there until the numbers stop moving. It's best to actually take the turkey completely out of the oven and close the oven door so you don't lose all the heat.
    Visit additional tips on taking the temperature of your turkey.