How Long to Cook 8 Lb Turkey


There’s little more delicious than a fresh-from-the-oven turkey. But what if you’ve never cooked one before? How long should you cook an 8-pound turkey? And at what temperature? If you’re new to the Thanksgiving scene, don’t worry—I’m here to help.

Wait for the turkey to reach at least 165 degrees F in several places with a meat thermometer.

Once the turkey has been roasting for about an hour, use a meat thermometer to check the temperature of the turkey. Place it in several places and make sure that it reads 165 degrees F or higher before removing from oven.

The best place to insert a meat thermometer is along one of the drumsticks, as this will give you an accurate reading of how well done your bird is without compromising its appearance or flavor.

This is where the meat thermometer comes in handy.


A meat thermometer is a handy tool to have if you want to know exactly when your turkey is done. It’s important not to rely on the pop-up timer, which often goes off before the turkey is done and makes it easy for you to take it out of the oven too early. You also don’t want to rely on your eyes or the juices running clear–while both are good indicators of doneness, there are plenty of reasons why this could be misleading (like if you’ve stuffed your bird).

How long does it take to cook an 8-pound turkey?

Most recipes say to cook your turkey for 4 hours at 325 degrees F. But, how long does it take to cook an 8-pound turkey? The answer depends on a few things:

  • If the turkey is frozen or thawed
  • If the turkey is stuffed or not stuffed

Cooking an 8-pound turkey takes about 4 hours at 325 degrees F, but it can vary depending on the size and type of your oven.

Cooking an 8-pound turkey takes about 4 hours at 325 degrees F, but it can vary depending on the size and type of your oven.

  • The cooking time depends on the turkey’s weight. A smaller turkey will cook faster than a larger one because it has less mass to heat up and cool down as it cooks.
  • The temperature in your oven also affects how long it takes for a turkey to cook through (i.e., reach its safe minimum internal temperature). Higher temperatures speed up this process, while lower temperatures slow it down–but don’t let this fool you into thinking that using a lower setting is safer! No matter what setting you use, always check internal temps with a meat thermometer before serving any poultry products (see below).
  • Size matters when determining how long something should be cooked: A small pan will hold less liquid than large one; thusly making smaller pieces of meat more likely to dry out than larger ones during braising or stewing processes where liquid levels are kept constant throughout cooking times


We hope that you’ve learned a lot about cooking an 8-pound turkey in this article. We know it can be intimidating to cook such a large bird, but if you follow these tips and stick to them, we promise that your Thanksgiving dinner will be delicious!

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