These turkey recipes include recipes for fresh turkey, ground turkey, and cooked or leftover turkey. Keep in mind that you can use ground turkey in most chili recipes, meatballs, pasta sauces, and many other dishes using ground beef. And turkey can be substituted for chicken in many dishes calling for cooked or boneless chicken.
Always thaw turkey and other poultry before you begin cooking. If meat or poultry isn't completely defrosted, it will take longer to get to a safe temperature.
Bacteria can grow in temperatures between 40 F and 140 F — the "danger zone." A safe way to defrost poultry is in the refrigerator, so try to plan ahead. A 3 to 4 pound chicken will take about 24 hours to thaw in the refrigerator. If you're in a hurry, use the cold water method. Make sure to leave the poultry in its original packaging or put it in a zip-close food storage bag. Keep the poultry completely covered with the cold water and change the water frequently to keep it cold. Allow about 30 minutes per pound for cold water thawing.
Large cuts of meat or poultry should either be cut in half or into quarters, and it is recommended that large cuts be cooked high for an hour or two before switching to low. If you brown the meat before adding it to the slow cooker, it will not be necessary to begin on high. A roast larger than 2 1/2 to 3 pounds should be cut in half.