Preheat oven to 325 degreesturkey- labeled for reuse

How long to cook it: Figure 12-15 minutes per pound for 12-20 lb. turkey and 10-12 minutes per pound for turkeys over 20 pounds. You will notice this may be less time than you are used to with a conventional turkey.

Note:  If you have stuffed the turkey, use the longer cooking time.  Your turkey should reach an internal temperature in the breast of 165 degrees (some sources even suggest as low as 140-150 degrees).

Cooking Instructions:

Place turkey, breast side up, in a shallow roasting pan.  Rub with oil or butter to prevent skin from drying and to enhance the color.  Cover the pan loosely with foil and then remove the foil for the last ½ hour of baking time for a nice golden color.  Bake in a preheated 325-degree oven.  If you are making a stuffed turkey, stuff just before putting into the oven.  To test for doneness, a meat thermometer inserted deep into the thigh should reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit.  Once your turkey is done, it is very important to let it “rest” for at least 10-15 minutes before carving to allow the juices to disperse throughout the entire bird.

*Adapted from Dominion Valley Farm


Another great site with cooking tips for your heritage breed turkey is marysturkeys.com.  She takes you through the basic roasting directions and gives great tips.

Local Harvest also has some great advise about cooking your heritage bird.  You will notice that they are suggesting an even lower internal temp (140-150 degrees) for heritage breed birds.