The Ultimate Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Turkey Guide (2023)


Welcome to the ultimate guide on preparing a make-ahead Thanksgiving turkey that will leave your guests in awe. In this comprehensive article, we will unveil a foolproof strategy that not only guarantees a deliciously moist turkey but also ensures the convenience of advance preparation. Say goodbye to the stress of last-minute cooking and hello to a Thanksgiving masterpiece that can even outshine the rest.

The Spatchcocking Advantage

Our secret weapon in achieving the perfect make-ahead turkey is spatchcocking. This technique involves removing the backbone of the turkey, resulting in a flat and evenly cooked bird. Not only does spatchcocking reduce cooking time significantly, but it also enhances the crisping of the skin, delivering that coveted golden-brown perfection.

The Reheating Process

The key to a successful make-ahead turkey lies in the reheating process. To preserve the juiciness of the breast and maintain the crispiness of the skin, we recommend reheating the spatchcocked turkey whole and on the bone. The skin and fat act as natural protectors, ensuring the turkey retains its moisture and flavor during the reheating process.

Reheating at a moderate temperature of 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes to an hour achieves the ideal balance. This gentle reheating not only brings the turkey back to its steaming hot glory but also allows you to multitask by reheating side dishes simultaneously.

Tips for Make-Ahead Turkey Success

  1. Dry Brining: Begin the journey to a flavorful turkey by dry-brining a few days ahead. Whether you opt for a simple salt and pepper mix or a blend of herbs, spices, and citrus zest, dry brining enhances the taste and ensures a crisp, golden skin.

  2. Cooler Storage: If your pre-roasted turkey will be out of the refrigerator for more than two hours, pack it in a cooler to maintain its freshness.

  3. Room Temperature Rest: Before reheating, let the pre-roasted bird come to room temperature for one to two hours. No need for additional resting after reheating.

  4. Strategic Oven Placement: To reheat stuffing and other sides along with the turkey, position the bird on the upper rack and the vegetables below.

  5. Herb Infusion: Elevate the flavor profile by lining the bottom of the roasting pan with fresh herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and sage during reheating.


In conclusion, our make-ahead Thanksgiving turkey guide, featuring the game-changing spatchcocking technique and meticulous reheating process, ensures a stress-free and impressive holiday feast. Follow these steps, and you'll have a turkey that not only surpasses expectations but also becomes the centerpiece of your Thanksgiving celebration. Make this year's feast memorable with a make-ahead turkey that's ready to travel – to the top of Google rankings and beyond.


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