Rating: 5 stars 4.8
271 Ratings
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  • 3 star values: 7
  • 2 star values: 2
  • 1 star values: 1

Cooking turkey in a bag is easy with this recipe. Your Thanksgiving turkey will be perfectly moist when done, and you can make gravy out of the juice that forms in the bottom of the bag. Plus, cleanup is a snap! The cooking time will vary if your turkey is larger or smaller than 12 pounds.

Recipe Summary

15 mins
3 hrs
3 hrs 15 mins

Cook your turkey in a bag for a tender, juicy, and flavorful holiday dinner. This method yields perfect results every time and makes cleanup a breeze. 

Why Cook Turkey In a Bag? 

Cooking turkey in a bag keeps the bird juicy by trapping in the moisture. It also speeds up the cooking time by trapping in the heat. Plus, you won't have to scrub the roasting pan – when you're done, just throw the bag out. 

Turkey In a Bag Ingredients and Tools

Here's what you'll need to make this top-rated turkey in a bag: 

· Turkey: This recipe calls for a whole 12-pound turkey. If your bird is larger or smaller, you'll need to adjust your cooking time. 
· Seasonings: The turkey is simply seasoned with just salt and pepper, which allows the natural flavors to shine. 
· Flour: Two tablespoons of flour keep the bag from bursting and help with browning.  
· Vegetables: The turkey is roasted alongside onions and celery. For an extra pop of color, add carrots. 
· Turkey Bag: You should be able to find turkey-sized oven bags at your local grocery store, likely in the aluminum foil and plastic wrap aisle. 

How to Cook Turkey In a Bag

side view of a golden-brown turkey in a roasting pan
Credit: Jbars

You'll find the full, step-by-step recipe below – but here's a brief overview of what you can expect when you roast this turkey in a bag: 

1. Prepare the Turkey: Remove and discard the giblets, pat the turkey dry, and season with salt and pepper. 
2. Pack the Bag: Sprinkle the bottom of the bag with flour. Place the turkey in the bag along with cut celery and onions. Seal the bag, transfer to a roasting pan, and use a fork to poke several holes in the bag.  
3. Roast the Turkey: Bake in a preheated oven until the juices run clear. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh meat should read 180 degrees F.

How Long to Cook Turkey In a Bag

A 12-pound turkey should be fully cooked (using this bag method) after about 3 to 3.5 hours in a 350 degrees F oven.  

More Turkey FAQs

Here at Allrecipes, we know a thing or two about cooking the perfect Thanksgiving feast — that's why we've made it our mission to answer your most burning turkey questions. Check out some of our best turkey tips, tricks, and guides from over the years: 

Explore our entire collection of Thanksgiving Tips and Tricks

Allrecipes Community Tips and Praise

"Turkey in a bag, where have you been all my life??" asks chiquitabanana. "Cooked the turkey breast-side-down as a few people recommended. Followed the recipe and it worked like a charm! This is our new holiday standard!"

"I'm a beginner cook and this recipe was so easy for me," says Candice Schmidt. "I cooked this for my family's Christmas get together and it came out perfect. I did add carrots and a couple apples, but other than that I did everything the same and it came out perfect."

"PERFECT," raves BABBYLEE. "Tender, juicy, and easy! I will be making ALL of my future turkeys this way. Planned for the rest of the food to be done sooner, as my turkey was done in less time."

Editorial contributions by Corey Williams


Original recipe yields 12 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

  • Remove and discard giblets. Rinse turkey and pat dry; season with salt and pepper.

  • Sprinkle the bottom of the turkey bag with flour; place turkey in the bag and add celery and onions. Seal the bag and transfer into a roasting pan; poke several holes in the bag with a fork.

  • Bake in the preheated oven until turkey is cooked and the juices run clear, about 3 to 3 1/2 hours. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh meat should read 180 degrees F (85 degrees C).

Nutrition Facts

744 calories; protein 93.2g; carbohydrates 3.8g; fat 36.5g; cholesterol 308.7mg; sodium 309.5mg. Full Nutrition