Turkey Frying Safety Tips

Turkey Frying 101

Why a turkey fryer can be dangerous:

  • Many containers can easily tip over, spilling hot cooking oil.
  • Make sure your turkey is completely thawed and your pot is not overfilled as this can result in flammable cooking oil spill over.
  • Even a small amount of cooking oil coming into contact with the burner can cause a large fire.
  • With no thermostat controls, the deep fryers have the potential to overheat the oil to the point of combustion.
  • The sides of the cooking pot, lid and pot handles get dangerously hot, posing severe burn hazards.

Safety tips for using a turkey fryer:

  • Follow the manufacturer's directions on the deep-frying equipment. Make sure to completely thaw the turkey before lowering it in.
  • Turkey fryers should always be used outdoors, on a solid level surface and a safe distance from flammable buildings and materials.
  • Never use a turkey fryer on a wooden deck, under a patio, in a garage or any enclosed space that can catch fire.
  • Remember that overfilling the fryer will lead to danger.
  • Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching pot or lid handles. Wear long sleeves and safety goggles to protect you from oil splatter.
  • Raise and lower the turkey slowly to avoid splattering and burns.
  • Make sure the turkey is completely thawed. The National Turkey Federation recommends refrigerator thawing and to allow approximately 24 hours for every five pounds of bird.
  • Be careful with marinades.  Remember that oil and water don't mix. Even a small amount of moisture can cause oil to spill over, leading to a fire or explosion hazard.
  • Never leave the fryer unattended.   Frying a turkey requires full-time adult attention.
  • Never let children or pets near the fryer when in use. Even hours after use, the oil inside can remain dangerously hot.
  • Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby, and know its proper use and limitations. Never use water to extinguish a grease fire!
  • If a turkey fryer fire occurs, have someone call 9-1-1 immediately
  • Use your best judgment. If the fire is manageable and you can do so safely, use the all-purpose fire extinguisher.