The Best Way to Slow Cook a Turkey in the Oven

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and that means it’s time to start thinking about the main course. If you’re looking for a delicious and easy way to cook your turkey, look no further than the slow cooker! Slow cooker turkey breast is moist, flavorful, and perfect for a crowd.

In this article, we’ll show you how to cook a slow cooker turkey breast that will make your guests swoon. We’ll provide step-by-step instructions, tips, and tricks, so you can be sure to cook a turkey that is both delicious and impressive.

So what are you waiting for? Get started on your slow cooker turkey breast today!

The Best Way to Slow Cook a Turkey in the Oven
The Best Way to Slow Cook a Turkey in the Oven
Ingredients Instructions Time
  • 1 (12- to 14-pound) whole turkey
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh herbs, such as thyme, rosemary, and sage
  • 1/2 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F (135 degrees C).
  2. Remove the giblets from the turkey and reserve for another use.
  3. Pat the turkey dry with paper towels.
  4. Place the turkey in a large roasting pan.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, herbs, mustard, honey, salt, and pepper.
  6. Brush the turkey with the butter mixture.
  7. Cover the turkey with aluminum foil.
  8. Roast the turkey for 8 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).
  9. Remove the turkey from the oven and let it rest for 15 minutes before carving.
8 hours

Equipment and Ingredients

What you need to slow cook a turkey in the oven

To slow cook a turkey in the oven, you will need the following:

A large roasting pan or slow cooker
A meat thermometer
A roasting rack
Aluminum foil
Cooking spray
Salt and pepper
Herbs and spices (optional)

Choosing the right turkey

When choosing a turkey for slow cooking, you will want to find a bird that is about 12 to 14 pounds. This size will ensure that the turkey is cooked through without being overcooked.

You should also look for a turkey that is plump and has a good color. The skin should be smooth and free of blemishes.

Preparing the turkey

Before slow cooking a turkey, you will need to prepare it by removing the giblets and neck. You can also rinse the turkey inside and out with cold water.

If you are using a roasting pan, you will need to line it with aluminum foil. You can also spray the foil with cooking spray to prevent the turkey from sticking.

Place the turkey breast-side up on the roasting rack. Season the turkey with salt and pepper, and add any desired herbs or spices.

The Process

To slow cook a turkey in the oven, you will need to follow these steps:

1. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Place the turkey in the roasting pan and cover it with aluminum foil.
3. Cook the turkey for 10 minutes per pound.
4. Baste the turkey every hour with the pan drippings.
5. Check the turkey with a meat thermometer to make sure that it is cooked through. The internal temperature should reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
6. Let the turkey rest for 10 minutes before carving it.

Cooking times and temperatures

The following table provides approximate cooking times and temperatures for slow cooking a turkey in the oven:

| Weight | Cooking Time |
| 12 pounds | 6-7 hours |
| 14 pounds | 7-8 hours |
| 16 pounds | 8-9 hours |
| 18 pounds | 9-10 hours |

Carving the turkey

Once the turkey has rested, you can carve it. To do this, you will need a sharp knife and a carving board.

Start by removing the legs from the turkey. Cut through the skin and meat between the leg and the thigh. Then, cut through the joint to separate the leg from the body.

Repeat this process with the other leg.

To carve the breast, cut down the center of the breastbone. Then, cut each half of the breast into thin slices.

Serve the turkey immediately.

Tips and Tricks

How to Make the Best Slow-Cooked Turkey

There are a few things you can do to make sure your slow-cooked turkey is moist, flavorful, and delicious.

Use a good quality turkey. A fresh, young turkey will be the most flavorful. If you’re using a frozen turkey, be sure to thaw it completely before cooking.

Rub the turkey with a flavorful mixture. A simple mixture of olive oil, salt, pepper, and herbs will do the trick. You can also add garlic, onion powder, or other spices.

Cook the turkey at a low temperature. Slow cooking allows the turkey to cook evenly and slowly, resulting in a moist and flavorful bird. Cook the turkey at 275 degrees Fahrenheit for 8-10 hours.

Don’t overcook the turkey. The turkey is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Let the turkey rest before carving. After the turkey is cooked, let it rest for at least 30 minutes before carving. This will allow the juices to redistribute and the meat to be more tender.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

When slow cooking a turkey, there are a few common mistakes to avoid.

Don’t overcrowd the slow cooker. The turkey should have plenty of room to cook evenly. If you overcrowd the slow cooker, the turkey will not cook properly and may become tough.

Don’t forget to add liquid. The turkey needs liquid to cook properly. A good rule of thumb is to add 1 cup of liquid for every 4 pounds of turkey.

Don’t open the slow cooker lid too often. Opening the lid lets out heat, which can slow down the cooking process. Only open the lid to check the turkey and add liquid as needed.

Don’t overcook the turkey. The turkey is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Overcooking the turkey will make it tough and dry.

Storing and Reheating Leftover Turkey

Leftover turkey is a delicious and versatile dish. Here are a few tips for storing and reheating leftover turkey.

Store the turkey in an airtight container in the refrigerator. The turkey will keep for up to 3 days.

To reheat the turkey, you can either reheat it in the oven or in the microwave. To reheat in the oven, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake the turkey for 15-20 minutes, or until heated through. To reheat in the microwave, place the turkey in a microwave-safe dish and heat on high for 2-3 minutes, or until heated through.


There are a few different ways to slow cook a turkey. Here are a few variations to try:

Brined turkey. Brining a turkey before slow cooking it will help to make it more moist and flavorful. To brine a turkey, soak it in a mixture of water, salt, and sugar for several hours or overnight.

Herb-roasted turkey. Rub the turkey with a mixture of herbs, such as rosemary, thyme, and sage, before slow cooking it. This will add a delicious flavor to the turkey.

Stuffed turkey. Stuff the turkey with your favorite stuffing before slow cooking it. This is a great way to use up leftover bread or vegetables.

Crockpot turkey. If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can also slow cook a turkey in a crockpot. Simply follow the same instructions as you would for a slow cooker, but cook the turkey on low for 8-10 hours.

Other Slow-Cooked Dishes with Turkey

In addition to slow-cooked turkey, there are a number of other delicious dishes that you can make with turkey. Here are a few ideas:

Turkey chili. Make a big pot of Turkey chili for a hearty and flavorful meal.
Turkey soup. Turkey soup is a great way to use up leftover turkey.
Turkey sandwiches. Make a batch of turkey sandwiches for a quick and easy lunch or dinner.
Turkey casserole. Turkey casserole is a great way to use up leftover turkey.

Slow-cooked turkey is a delicious and versatile dish that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. Whether you’re looking for a simple and flavorful meal or a more complex dish, there’s a slow-cooked turkey recipe for you. So next time you’re looking for a delicious and hearty meal, give slow-cooked turkey a try.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What Is The Ideal Temperature For Slow Cooking A Turkey In The Oven?

Answer: The ideal temperature for slow cooking a turkey in the oven is typically between 250°F and 275°F. Cooking at this lower temperature range allows the turkey to cook evenly and remain juicy without drying out.

2. How Long Should A Turkey Be Slow Cooked In The Oven?

Answer: The general rule for slow cooking a turkey is about 20 minutes per pound at 250°F to 275°F. However, it’s important to use a meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature reaches 165°F for safety.

3. Should The Turkey Be Covered During Slow Cooking?

Answer: Yes, covering the turkey with aluminum foil or a lid helps maintain a consistent temperature and prevents the turkey from drying out. It’s advisable to uncover it towards the end of cooking for a crispy skin.

4. Can Stuffing Be Cooked Inside A Slow-Cooked Turkey?

Answer: While it’s traditional to cook stuffing inside the turkey, it’s safer to cook it separately when slow cooking. This ensures that both the turkey and stuffing reach the appropriate internal temperatures without overcooking the turkey.

5. What Are The Best Seasonings To Use For A Slow-Cooked Turkey?

Answer: For a slow-cooked turkey, classic seasonings like salt, pepper, garlic powder, thyme, rosemary, and sage are ideal. You can also use butter or olive oil for added moisture and flavor. Experimenting with different herbs and spices based on personal preferences can also yield delicious results.

Final Word

slow cooking a turkey in the oven is an effective method to ensure a moist, flavorful, and tender result. By maintaining a low and steady temperature, typically between 250°F to 275°F, the turkey cooks evenly without drying out.

The cooking time, roughly 20 minutes per pound, is crucial and should be monitored with a meat thermometer to ensure the turkey reaches a safe internal temperature of 165°F. Covering the turkey during most of the cooking process helps to retain moisture, and uncovering it towards the end can achieve a desirable crispy skin.

It’s advisable to cook any stuffing separately to guarantee both the turkey and stuffing are properly cooked. Seasoning the turkey with traditional herbs and spices like thyme, rosemary, and sage, along with salt, pepper, and garlic, enhances its flavor. Additionally, the use of butter or olive oil can add to the juiciness of the meat.


Author Profile

Mike Thompson
Mike Thompson
Hello, fellow turkey enthusiasts! I'm Mike Thompson, a proud resident of the picturesque state of Missouri, renowned for its thriving turkey population and favorable hunting conditions. For over a decade, I've roamed the woods, valleys, and peaks of our beautiful state, learning every nook, cranny, and secret that turkey hunting has to offer. My track record? Well, let's just say I've bagged more turkeys than there are days in November, and each hunt has added a story to my ever-growing book of experiences.

However, as much as I love the thrill of the hunt, what truly fuels my passion is the joy of sharing my knowledge with others. That's why I created this platform. This site is not just a testament to my journey but a beacon for all those who are looking to embark on their own turkey hunting adventures. Whether you're a beginner eager to get started or a seasoned pro seeking advanced tips, you'll find a wealth of information here.

From understanding turkey behavior, tracking techniques, and the best equipment to use, to the do's and don'ts of turkey hunting, this site is a comprehensive guide to all things turkey. So, strap on your boots, pick up your gear, and let's embark on a journey together into the world of turkey hunting. Welcome to my site, and happy hunting!