Hamilton Beach Homepage

How to cook turkey in a roaster oven for Thanksgiving

UPDATED October 6, 2022: Thanksgiving Day is right around the corner, and the Hamilton Beach® Test Kitchen wants to help you plan a holiday meal that goes off without a hitch. First order of business: the turkey! With all your side dishes and desserts that need space in the oven, you may be wondering how you’ll have time to roast the turkey too. We’ll solve that problem by showing you how to easily cook a deliciously moist and juicy turkey in a roaster oven, freeing up the main oven for the sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie.

Roast a tender, juicy turkey

A countertop electric roaster oven is a must for busy holidays when your kitchen range is working overtime. Hamilton Beach has large-capacity roaster ovens that can handle up to a 28-pound turkey with ease. While your pies are in the main oven, the roaster oven can roast the turkey to golden-brown perfection and keep it warm and juicy until you’re ready to carve and serve. There’s even a handy lift-out rack that makes removing the heavy bird a lot less strain on your back.  

Don’t worry if you’ve never used a roaster oven before. Follow this tried-and-true recipe from the Hamilton Beach Test Kitchen. And remember, when the turkey is finished roasting, don’t forget to dress it up on a large platter with fruit and herbs.

Turkey in a Roaster Oven

Serving Size: Serves 8
Author: Hamilton Beach Test Kitchen


  • 14-15 pound turkey, fresh or totally thawed
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 stalk celery
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup melted butter or vegetable oil

Seasoning Rub

  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried sage


  1. Combine ingredients for seasoning rub.
  2. Remove the rack from the roaster oven. Cover and preheat oven to 325°F.
  3. Remove giblets and neck from cavities of turkey. Set aside and use for giblet gravy. Rinse bird inside and out with cold water.
  4. Place turkey on rack. Place onion and celery inside turkey. Brush turkey with butter or oil.
  5. Rub turkey with Seasoning Rub.
  6. Using handles on rack, place rack with turkey in roaster oven and cook 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Turkey is done when internal temperature of breast reaches at least 165°F.
  7. Let turkey rest 30 minutes before carving.


  1. Always thaw a frozen turkey in the refrigerator, not at room temperature. A 12-15 pound frozen turkey will take 2-3 days to thaw in the refrigerator. If pressed for time, this size turkey can be thawed in cold water in 6-9 hours. Be sure to change the water often.
  2. The roaster oven cooks a turkey in less time than a regular oven, but use a meat thermometer to make sure your turkey is thoroughly cooked.
  3. Turkey cooked in a roaster oven will be very moist, but less brown than a traditionally roasted turkey. Seasoning rubs add flavor and enhance the appearance of a roaster oven cooked turkey.
  4. Visit www.foodsafety.gov for more information on safe internal cooking temperatures.

More Thanksgiving tips:

How to Protect a Pie Crust From Burning

Two Tasty Twists on Traditional Turkey Preparation

10 Ways to Use Your Roaster Oven For More Than Just Turkey

Related Posts

Simply irresistible air fryer apple pies

Whether it's a family feast or a festive gathering, one thing's for sure – warm and flaky homemade pies are always a crowd-pleaser. If you’re searching for a fun twist on the tradition, try these irresistible air fryer apple hand pies. They’ll...

How to take a turkey’s temperature

You’ve brined, stuffed, and trussed the turkey, but there’s still one important step to complete – ensuring that it's been cooked to a safe internal temperature....

How to carve a turkey

Family and friends are gathered and waiting. You’ve brined, trussed, seasoned, stuffed, and roasted the perfect turkey. Now what? We know that carving a turkey can be intimidating. Don’t worry! The Hamilton Beach Test Kitchen can show you how to...


  1. Raw poultry should never, ever be rinsed. The water spray can cause bacteria to distribute throughout your kitchen causing cross-contamination, in a much larger area than one might expect. The USDA strongly recommends against it. Here is a link to the USDA’s consumer information page about rinsing meat: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/food-safety-education/get-answers/food-safety-fact-sheets/safe-food-handling/washing-food-does-it-promote-food-safety/washing-food

  2. I find it very hard to believe that a 12-15 lb. turkey will be done in 1-1/2 to 2 hrs., even in a roaster at only 325 degrees. Anyone wanting to try this should definitely use a meat thermometer.

  3. What size roaster oven is used in this recipe?
    I have a 6.5 quart oven that does not have a rack. Can I cook a smaller turkey in it without the rack?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *