Here's a predicament you may have faced at some point: you want to try deep-frying your Thanksgiving turkey, but you don't want to go down in history as the one who messed up when frying it. There are so many options to consider - should you get a propane or electric fryer? Stainless steel or aluminum? And what extra features do you need?
We're here to give you a rundown on what you should be looking for in our handy buying guide: the power source, the material, the size, and all the extra features. At the end, we've got a list of 7 of our favorite products to help you get started in your turkey fryer search, as well as some tips on how to fry your turkey safely.
Here are the best turkey fryers we found online, and we think you'll find them great too. Be sure you read the reviews along with our advice when making your final decision.
|Size||16.3 x 18.3 x 14.8 inches|
|Capacity||up to a 20 lb. turkey|
|Extra features||Magnetic breakaway cord, oil drain valve, drain clips, digital timer, dishwasher safe components|
|Size||16 x 16 x 24.5 inches|
|Capacity||up to a 16 lb. turkey|
|Extra features||Cooking basket, lifter, quick start cooking guide, drip tray|
|Size||18 x 19 x 22 inches|
|Capacity||up to a 18 lb. turkey|
|Extra features||Chicken frying skewer set, grab hook, perforated steam/boil basket|
|Size||16.4 x 16.45 x 16.9 inches|
|Capacity||Up to a 18 lb. turkey|
|Extra features||Wood chip box, drip tray, magnetic breakaway cord, thermostat temperature control|
|Size||13.5 x 33 inches|
|Extra features||Turkey hangar, sauce syringe, aluminum fry pan, aluminum basket, lifting hook|
|Size||15 x 22 x 15 inches|
|Capacity||Up to a 15 lb. turkey|
|Extra features||Spatter-shield cover, adjustable thermostat, ready indicator light|
|Size||20.2 x 16 x 16.4 inches|
|Capacity||Up to a 14 lb. turkey|
|Extra features||120-minute timer, adjustable temperature control, stainless steel mesh basket|
Frying a turkey isn't exactly the safest endeavor, but it can save you a lot of cooking time and space that you could be using to cook your many Thanksgiving side dishes. Choosing a fryer that fits your environment, turkey size, and budget will help narrow down possible candidates.
Most turkey fryers use either propane or electricity as their source of power. Here are the pros and cons of each type.
Propane fryers require you to connect the fryer to a propane tank with a hose. Since propane and high heat are involved, this should only be used outdoors. And since they can only be used outdoors, you need to consider the weather and whether you have enough space to use the fryer safely.
They can get the frying job done pretty quickly since the oil heats up fast, but many people find it hard to control the temperature of a propane fryer. There have been cases of the oil heating up to combustion, so only someone who’s used to frying should use a propane fryer.
If this is your first turkey frying journey, we’d highly recommend an electric fryer. They are often safer than propane fryers since many come with a breakaway cord that disconnects in the event of accidental tipping or oil spills.
Electric fryers can be used both outdoors and indoors, so weather isn’t an issue as long as you have a safe place to do your frying job. They also tend to come with more helpful features like thermometers and automatic shut off timers.
Turkey fryers are generally made with either stainless steel or aluminum. Stainless steel fryers tend to be more expensive, but they are easier to clean and they tend to last longer than fryers made of other materials.
The most common alternative to stainless steel is aluminum. It may not last as long as a stainless steel fryer, but they tend to be easier on your wallet.
Unless this is your first attempt at cooking a Thanksgiving turkey or you're cooking for a new crowd this year, you've probably already decided what kind of turkey you're going to get and how much time you have to cook it. These are both very important factors to consider when looking at fryers.
The maximum capacity of a turkey fryer should be listed in the product description. Check this before making your purchase and compare it to the size of your Thanksgiving turkey.
We recommend buying a fryer that has a slightly higher capacity than your turkey; so if you’re buying a turkey that’s 12 lbs, consider a fryer that can handle up to 15 lbs. This allows for extra room in the fryer for your turkey to cook, and it also helps prevent accidental oil spills.
Part of the appeal of frying a turkey is a shorter cooking time than a conventional oven. For instance, some fryers can cook a 15 pound turkey in an hour while others take 2 hours to cook a 12 pound one. If you’re considering an electric fryer, you can find how fast you can cook a turkey by reading customer reviews or looking at the product’s wattage.
Frying a turkey isn’t exactly the safest endeavor, but there are features that can make or break a safe Thanksgiving. Look for a fryer that has features like a built-in thermometer, a vented lid to prevent overheating, an automatic shut-off timer, and more.
Other useful features like nonstick coating and oil drain holes can make cleanup much easier and safer as well.
Hot oil can make things taste utterly delicious, but it's also extremely dangerous to work with. Whether this is your first deep-frying experience or you want a quick brush-up on safety measures, we've included this section to make your cooking journey as safe as possible.
We don't mean dry out the turkey meat itself; we mean the outside part. Most people buy turkeys frozen, and when meat thaws, it releases moisture. This moisture could cause painful and messy oil splatters when you dip it into the fryer.
To prevent this from happening, we recommend thawing the turkey as much as possible before starting the frying process. You should also pat the outside of the turkey with a towel, and don't be shy about it. It will still turn out juicy in the end.
It may feel a bit silly to get all geared up to cook a simple turkey, but we're going to go ahead and use the cliche phrase: better safe than sorry. The most exposed parts during cooking are most often your face and hands, so you'll want to protect those.
You should pick up a pair of heat-resistant and oil-resistant gloves, like ones designed specifically for frying or barbecuing. Goggles would also be a good investment since your vision could become severely impaired from oil burns. Don't skimp on protection!
You should have an abundant amount of open space around your fryer regardless of whether you're frying indoors or outdoors. If you're outdoors in particular, the safest place is either on a wide patio or on the grass.
It would also be a good idea to have a fire extinguisher on hand since oil fires can't be put out with water.
Believe it or not, there's more to life than just turkey. Here are some other gadgets that will help you discover and enjoy a wide variety of food.
There you have it - a list of the 7 best turkey fryers available online this year. Whether you decide to go with a propane or electric fryer, we'd recommend one that is stainless steel and is easy to clean. As long as you follow the instructions, you should be well on your way to being this year's Thanksgiving turkey hero.
Author: Shannon McNaught
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