Thanksgiving Turkey, Fried edition – and a giveaway!

Deep fried turkey is pretty delicious. But I know what you’re thinking – you’re pretty dern skeerred of turkey frying. Don’t be. Just stick with me, okay?

I have great memories of frying a turkey in the backyard at my Nanny and Gaga’s. The men all standing around a great big pot of boiling oil, the scent of crisping skin and sage wafting through the breezy Thursday afternoon in San Antonio.

My sister and I stood nearby, amazed that a turkey could be cooked in such little time. We were used to Nanny waking in the early hours to start the turkey roaster she’s had since the 70s (and it still works too!), and then lovingly basting it every 45 minutes like clockwork. Delicious? Yes. Labor intensive? YES.

The true secret to any good turkey, whether roasting or frying, is a good brine. You don’t have to buy special box mixes, I promise. You have everything you need, right in your own kitchen to make the actual brine. You may need two extra tools to execute successfully, but your local grocery store will have what you need.

The beautifully fried turkey in the photo above was brined for only 6 hours, but it has TONS of flavor. Leaving it overnight would have been spectacular, but know that you don’t have to.

Turkey frying, even back in the early 90s, when the trend started, has always been a bit scary. Giant vats of oil popping and bubbling in your backyard – and you’d better make sure you’re far enough away from the house not to start a fire. The bird has to be completely dry before submerging, and the oil temperature has to be kept constant, using an open flame.

All of that is pretty intimidating. In step Masterbuilt and Butterball. They’ve created an indoor turkey fryer. Yes, I did say indoor.

Masterbuilt Butterball Turkey Fryer
Image courtesy of

I’m not going to lie. I was really nervous to get going on the Butterball Indoor Electric Turkey Fryer. But all those nerves were for naught. Let me tell you how easy using the Butterball Indoor Electric Turkey Fryer is:

I fried a turkey on a Monday night. After work. In my pajamas. And we ate it for dinner. On Monday Night. Fried turkey, on MONDAY NIGHT.

And I cleaned it today, in about 20 minutes flat. In fact, most of the pieces are dishwasher safe. LOVES. Here’s a video to show you just how easy it is:

You want this thing in your home and as part of your Thanksgiving routine. Trust me.

The really exciting part? Masterbuilt and Butterball have graciously offered a brand-spanking-new turkey fryer to be given away here on Bluebonnets & Brownies. Gee, thanks guys!

So how do you win? There are several ways:

1) Leave a comment below letting me know what you’d serve with your fried turkey this Thanksgiving.

2) Follow Masterbuilt on Twitter.
(Leave another comment to tell me you did so, or it doesn’t count.)

3) Like Masterbuilt on Facebook.
(Leave another comment to tell me you did so, or it doesn’t count.)

4) Like Bluebonnets & Brownies on Facebook.
(Leave another comment to tell me you did so, or it doesn’t count.)

5) Tweet the following: “I just entered to win a Butterball Indoor Electric Turkey Fryer from @BluebonnetBaker & @JohnMcLemore #recipe #giveaway
(Leave another comment to tell me you did so, or it doesn’t count.)

The winner will be chosen via and contacted on Monday, November 15th via email. Because we want you to have your turkey fryer by Thanksgiving, you must answer the email by 11:59 p.m. on Monday, November 15th, or we will choose another winner via

Contest open to U.S. residents only. All times are EST.

******UPDATE: Not only will you get the turkey fryer, you’ll get Masterbuilt CEO John’s cookbook (with forward written by Paula Deen, so you know it’s legit!) and a $15 coupon towards a Butterball Turkey. Sweet.******

Increase your chances of winning a turkey fryer! My dear friend Kristen over at Dine & Dish is also giving away a Masterbuilt Butterball Turkey Fryer. Head on over to Dine & Dish to enter her giveaway too.

Disclaimer: While I received a turkey fryer, cookbook and coupon for a Butterball turkey from Masterbuilt myself for the purposes of review, the opinions expressed above are entirely my own, and were independently formed in the use of the product.

We have a winner! Comment #132 was selected by as the winner. Schmidty will be contacted via email and will receive his fryer directly from Masterbuilt. Congratulations, Schmidty! Now I’ve got to go plan my Thanksgiving meal with all these wonderful side dishes you guys have me salivating over. Thanks to everyone for participating!

Thanksgiving Turkey, Fried edition – and a giveaway!
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Thanksgiving Turkey, Fried edition – and a giveaway!
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  1. says

    I’d serve it with stuffing, of course. And, cranberry sauce, rustic mushrooms (a family recipe), sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, roasted brussels sprouts….

  2. Lisa says

    What a wonderful giveaway! We are frying a turkey this year and we’re just saying last night how we need to get out and buy our fryer. With our fried turkey, we’ll be serving it with homemade cranberry sauce, stuffing (or dressing like my grandma used to call it), sweet potatoes, garlic mashed potatoes, mac-n-cheese, green bean casserole, homemade bread, a relish tray, and 2 more side dishes I haven’t though of yet, trying to find 2 new recipes for that! Instead of doing the traditional desserts this year, we’re doing a “dessert remix.” Still focusing on pumpkin, apple, pecan and sweet potato desserts but instead of pies, something else. :)

  3. says

    I think I’d make my usual excellent sides – chestnut sausage stuffing, roasted garlic rosemary mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, homemade green bean casserole, & port cranberry sauce. YUM!!!

  4. Jen H says

    Holy Moley! What an amazing giveaway and how easy it looks!

    I would serve a traditional Puerto Rican feast of Arroz con Gandules (translates to rice and pigeon peas), Tostones and flan (more like a cheesecake in my house)and the best stuffing I’ve ever tasted that my grandma taught me. It includes plantains and bacon of all things, how can it be bad? lol

  5. says

    I need to win this because last year we spent Thanksgiving with a bunch of friends and they deep fried their turkey. The first time we had it. And my husband LOVED it and now that’s what he wants again!

  6. says

    Oh wow….I’d LOVE to try this! I love turkey and we really only eat it once a year. This would make it so easy!

    Serving with it? My mom’s dressing, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes…you know, the works! :)

  7. says

    With my fried turkey I’d serve mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing/dressing, baked sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, dinner rolls… You know, everything that makes Thanksgiving what Thanksgiving is. :)

  8. says

    I’d serve my Sweet Potato Casserole dish with my fried turkey. I’ve been hooked on fried turkey’s ever since my parents started doing them. I’d love to be able to do one for my family!

  9. says

    green bean casserole, vegall casserole, sweet potato casserole (can you tell we like casseroles in my family?) and fresh cranberry sauce and then cranberry sauce in the can too with some sister shuberts rolls

  10. says

    This looks amazing! I’d totally give it a try this Thanksgiving with all the usual stuff…cranberry sauce, stuffing, sweet potatoes. Yum!

  11. Cerys says

    Mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce, carrots, corn, and green beans!Oh, and dinner rolls. It’s thanksgiving, it should be a feast right?!

  12. says

    Tony reallllllly wants one of these. Like really bad. And oh, do you EVEN have to ask what I would serve with this turkey?! STUFFING and nothing else. Ok, maybe gravy and pie. But I am a purist. And I only have so much room in my tummy–that precious real estate is for one thing only. Stuffing, dressing, cornbread stuffing…basically anything made with bread, onions, herbs, and probably sausage.


  13. says

    I would serve my deep fried turkey with mashed potatoes, cranberry, stuffing, and greenbean casserole. My favorite though, is all of the above on a leftover turkey sandwich! :)

  14. Amy Pickrel says

    Would love to have this for our turkey! I would make some mashed potatoes and green been casserole! Having something this easy, I would make some good rolls too!

  15. Aimeemac says

    I would serve my apple, sausage, and sage stuffing, sweet potato casserole, brussel sprouts, sweet corn grown right here in town, mashed potatoes, cranberry relish, and cornbread. Yummy!

  16. Leslie Herrema says

    I would serve my deep fried turkey with all the traditional sides (mashed potatoes and gravy; stuffing; rolls; green beans; coleslaw) because that is the kind of girl I am!

    I also liked you on facebook!

  17. Aimeemac says

    I just tweeted about this awesome giveaway!! We own a Masterbuilt smoker and smoked some ribs and a brisket on Sunday. Our family loves Masterbuilt!

  18. meg says

    I think I’d serve the same sides I would with any thanksgiving. I LOVE the idea of Monday night turkey…. I’d make tacos, bbq on hawiian rolls, pot pie… there is a neverending list of great things to make from a turkey or with it!

  19. says

    We deep fried a trueky one year with great success! This would be cool to do indoors! Gets a bit cold here in Minnesota in February.

  20. says

    I would serve my FABULOUS fried turkey with mashed potatoes, GB casserole, stuffing, cranberry sauce (the kind in a can–don’t judge) broccoli and rice, and tons o’ pie.

  21. Meg says

    I would serve my fried turkey with sourdough, sausage and sage stuffing, homemade cranberry relish, mashed sweet potatoes with maple, roasted green beans, and pies galore!!
    I have followed both you and masterbuilt on twitter!!!

  22. Alaine Hilty says

    I would serve it with my faves-cornbread, mac and cheese, sweet potatos, mashed potatos and gravy, green beans, and homemade cranberry sauce

  23. Alaine Hilty says

    Mac and cheese, sweet potatos, mashed potatos, gravy, corn, green beans, cornbread, homemade cranberry sauce.

  24. says

    I love how compact it looks! I’d have to serve fried turkey with fried green beans and fried stuffing balls. Okay…so, maybe I’d go for something a little less fried on the side, but still. Doesn’t that sound delightful?

  25. Ashley says

    I would serve mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, rolls, stuffing, cran-raspberry jello, and pumpkin log for dessert…yum yum. Now, I’m hungry.

  26. Jennifer Rutherford says

    I deserve or actually my Husband deserves to win the indoor deep fryer because he unselfishly stands outside rain or shine every Thanksgiving so that we can enjoy this delicious treat! He would be so thrilled as would I !!!

  27. michelle says

    I would serve the most deluctably delicious high-calrie dessert I could bake. After all, if i’m going to eat my turkey fried, I might as well go all out.

  28. Jackie Watson says

    I definitely need some homemade dressing, craberries, sweet potatoes and rolls to go with that turkey!

  29. Jackie Watson says

    I definitely need some homemade dressing, cranberries, sweet potatoes and rolls to go with that turkey!

  30. Maureen Bills says

    I like Masterbuilt on Facebook AND Bluebonnets and brownies on Facebook… Great sites … THANK YOU! BTW picturing garlic mashed potatoes, maybe kicked up a notch with some cayenne pepper, some sugar snap peas… YUM… I’m hungry… Time to make dinner!

  31. Kathy B says

    I will serving sageomoin stuffing, butteilk mashed potatoes, f
    Gravy, canned yams, green bean casserole, canberry orange relish.

  32. Rick Segers says

    I follow you and Masterbuilt on Facebook and Masterbuilt on Twitter and can’t hardly wait to own a Masterbuilt Butterball Electric turkey Fryer.

  33. Wendy says

    Sweet potato casserole, carrot souffle’, green bean bundles, fruit salad and lots of desserts! YUM!!

  34. MichaelandVickieLee says

    I prefer the Cajun butter injection in the turkey. On your brine, be careful because most turkeys already have salt and liquid that they are packaged in. You don’t want your bird too salty.

    I’m hungry for the rice dressing recipe from my mother and of course the pumpkin roll.

  35. says

    I’d serve cream cheese mashed potatoes, brussels sprouts with bacon & pearl onions, oyster dressing, braised collard greens & corn muffins with my deep fried turkey :)

  36. Schmidty says

    I’d serve corn on the cob, homemade garlic mashed potatoes, hot buttered rolls, and apple pie and italian cream cake for dessert. :)

  37. Brian says

    I always server a Smoked Black Pepper Ham with my Thanksgiving Turkey. Also, twice baked potatoes are a must.

  38. Vanessa Noble says

    Sides we have on Thanksgiving include mashed potatoes, mixed veggies with cheese, rolls, sweet potatoes, stuffing

  39. Kelly says

    Your turkey looks great! Our sides always include sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, rolls, vegetables, and pies.

  40. Erin says

    we like to serve our turkey with the traditional, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potato pie, corn bread and cranberries. the best part is the appetizers! warm artichoke and olive dip, spinach dip, pigs in blankets!

  41. Shirley says

    I think the Masterbuilt indoor fryer is a great idea and would love one for Thanksgiving, that’s why I’m following Masterbuilt on both twitter and facebook.

  42. says

    I’ve got a whole ton of hungry mouths to feed this Thanksgiving (let’s see… around 80?) — needless to say, the fryer would definitely be put to use :).

    P.S. First time to your blog. Love it!

  43. suzanne says

    I have always been afraid to fire a turkey. Too many horror stories of burning down a house. I would love to try the technique. I would have all the fixins’ with it- corn bread dressing, sweet potatoes, green beans. Oh…I can’t wait for Thanksgiving.

  44. says

    It is very interesting,Thank you for sharing this to us! It sounds like an amazing & beautiful race (kinda wish I’d run it, too). Glad the weather held for you.

  45. Denise says

    I would serve it with our traditional sides – mashed potatoes, stuffing and green bean casserole. Nothing unique about the food each year, but the company is always good for a few surprises.

  46. Denise says

    I just liked Bluebonnets and Brownies on Facebook. That cupcake on your page made me instantly hungry for treats.

  47. says

    Love me some fried turkey!!! To go with it, I will definately have cornbread dressing with pecans, rice ( something to pour the turkey gravey over ), broccoli casserole.

  48. says

    Oops, forgot to tell you I would deep fry the turkey and serve it with cornbread stuffing and stuffin muffin as well as mashed garlic potatoes and candied sweet potatoes. I just liked Masterbuilt on FB.

  49. Chris Haering says

    With my succulent, moist deep-fried turkey, I would serve mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie.

  50. Linda King says

    What an excellent idea for a give-a-way! I live in Louisiana and I love fried turkey but to be able to do it by myself and in my own kitchen? What could be better?! I will cook all the traditional sides…dirth rice, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes and gravy, roasted pecan dressing, green beans with salt pork and new potatoes plus cranberry sauce. I’ll top the meal off with sweet potatoe pie, pecan pie and some pistachio delight desert. Come on over!! Everyone is welcome!

  51. Chris Haering says

    I would serve mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, green bean casserole, and pumpkin pie with my deep-fried turkey.

  52. Judi Martin says

    With the turkey we would be serving all the traditional items like stuffing, potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, rolls, cranberry sauce, fruit salad, relish plate and lots of pies for dessert. Yum!

  53. Christine Johnson says

    I would serve it with homemade cranberry sauce, cornbread dressing, mashed potatoes & gravy, green bean casserole & pecan pie. Thanks! I also joined Bluebonnets & Brownies on Facebook. :)

  54. says

    I would serve my mom’s stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, cranberries, and yeast rolls with my fried turkey. YUM!!

  55. Holly says

    My Thanksgiving fair will be the traditional Turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, dinner rolls & Pumpkin Pie. My husband is one of those traditional type kind of guys for Thanksgiving dinner! (That’s ok, were all with him on this dinner!) Thanks for the chance for such a great giveaway! Happy Thanksgiving!

  56. says

    I am going to my boyfriend’s family’s home this Thanksgiving and I will try fried turkey for the first time! I would love to win this turkey fryer for him as a Christmas present!

  57. HEIDIS says

    We will be serving homemade cranberry sauce, sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, homemade stuffing,creamed onions,brussel sprouts, corn and of course pumpkin and apple pies.

  58. says

    We do a fried turkey every Thanksgiving but with an outdoor fryer. I would serve all the usual Thanksgiving fixings…stuffing, sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, string beans, cranberry sauce and also a ham.

  59. Elaine says

    For sure I would serve sweet potato casserole, fresh cranberry relish anD pecan pie or Pumpkin Charlotte with Ginger Caramel Sauce.

  60. Michele Parker says

    I would use it when my mom comes to visit this Christmas – haven’t seen her in over a year! I miss her sooooo much! I have not had her with me for Christmas in almost 3 years!

    This would be wonderful as this is the Cajun way to cook a Turkey, and it would SO remind me of home!

  61. Randi says

    I would serve rolls, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and a variety of vegetables – the vegetables being especially important after doing the whole frying thing!

  62. Heather says

    My husband and I joke a lot about frying a turkey for Thanksgiving. We’d get a kick out of having one for real. And of course I’d serve it with all the regular (for us at least) fixin’s of stuffing, tortellini salad, rolls, mashed potatoes, and top it off with pumpkin pie (who knew you could do more with a pumpkin than carve a face in it 😉 )

  63. Lisa Lassiter says

    I’d serve traditional giblet stuffing, sweet potatoes, cranberry salad and mashed potatoes with home made pumpkin pie!

  64. Anne Ardoin says

    I liked Masterbuilt on Facebook!

    I liked Bluebonnets and Brownies on Facebook!

    I like my fried turkey with homemade cranberry sauce and green bean casserole topped with lightly fried shallots, chantilly potatoes and cornbread stuffing…..pecan pie and pumpkin bars for dessert! YUMMY!