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Preparing & Serving
Our Turkeys


TO USE WITHIN TWO WEEKS Leave the wrapper on and store in the refrigerator. Once thawed, you can keep the Smoked Turkey in the refrigerator for as long as two weeks.

TO USE NOW AND LATER – A unique feature of a Bates fully-cooked Smoked Turkey is the ability to refreeze. Slice the Smoked Turkey and wrap in airtight meal size packages to refreeze.

HOW TO HEAT - Smoked Turkeys are a READY-TO-EAT delicacy, good either cold or heated. If you prefer to serve your Smoked Turkey heated, place in a moderate 300•F oven for approximately 5 minutes per pound.

HOW TO SLICE – With any Smoked Turkey it’s gourmet-wise (not stingy) to slice it wafer thin. That lets your lucky palate savor every delicious smoked morsel. A good sharp knife will do the trick.

Occasionally a turkey might have a slight pink cast when sliced. This is a natural characteristic of a Smoked Turkey.





THAWING - Thaw turkey in cold water approximately 30 minutes per pound (change water every 1/2 hour) Thawed turkey may remain in refrigerator 1-2 days. 

COOKING - The secret of cooking a Bates Turkey is slow cooking and basting the turkey with its own natural juices. 

1.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2. Remove neck from body cavity, remove gizzard, liver & heart from neck cavity. 

3. Rinse & dry your turkey. RUB salt on turkey & info cavities. 

4. Place in a shallow pan (add 1-2 cups of water to keep turkey from sticking to the pan) Bake - uncovered for 1 hour. Allow turkey to begin browning. 

5. Cover turkey with aluminum foil - making a LOOSE tent. DO NOT SEAL. 

6. Cook until temperature reaches 170 degrees in the breast and 180 degrees in the thigh. Cooking times are for planning purposes only - always use a meat thermometer to determine doneness. Baste as often as possible. 

7. Allow turkey to set for at least 15-20 minutes before carving. 


Ready to cook weight         Cooking Time

10 to 12 pounds                    2 to 2 1/2 hours

12 to 14 pounds                    3 to 3 3/4 hours

14 to 18 pounds                    3 3/4 to 4 1/2 hours

18 to 20 pounds                    4 1/4 to 4 1/2 hours       

20 to 24 pounds                    4 1/2 to 5 hours

*Approximately 15 minutes per pound

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