This is how long to cook ground turkey in a skillet, in an air fryer, pressure cooker, slow cooker or baked in the oven. Lean ground turkey recipes too. You can even use our directions to cook frozen ground turkey instructions if you forgot to defrost it!
Cooking ground turkey is easier than you might think. You can even cook it from frozen if you forgot to defrost it ahead of time. Leaner than ground beef it is a great alternative when you are looking for a healthy protein to make tacos, casseroles or meatloaf. (affiliate links present)
How to Cook Ground Turkey
The cooking time for ground turkey can vary depending on the method of cooking and the recipe being used. Here are some general guidelines:
- Stovetop: When cooking in a skillet on the stovetop, it should be cooked for 7-10 minutes over medium heat. Be sure to break up the meat into small pieces as it cooks to ensure that it cooks evenly.
- Oven: If using in a recipe that requires baking, such as a meatloaf or casserole, it should be baked at 350 degrees F for 20-30 minutes.
- Grill: When grilling it should be cooked for 10-12 minutes over medium heat, flipping occasionally.
- Air Frying: This would be similar to cooking air fryer ground beef but would have less grease at the bottom of your basket when done since it’s leaner.
- Pressure Cooker: Only takes a few minutes using the saute function in this baby, or use our frozen directions at the top of this post.
- Slow cooker: You would want to follow the same directions as though you had beef, which takes a better part of the day. Worth it if you want to just throw in Crockpot ground turkey and make tacos later.
Regardless of the cooking method, it’s important to use a meat thermometer to ensure that the internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees F to ensure it is safe to eat.
How Long to Cook Ground Turkey Patties
These are fun and can be quite flavorful. Like meatloaf made into cakes you can get the outsides nice and crisp using your air fryer like this or sear in a pan on your stovetop to cook.
How to Brown Ground Turkey
You will start by heating a large skillet or frying pan over medium to high heat. Add a tablespoon or two of oil to the pan to prevent the meat from sticking. Once the pan is hot, add it to the pan. Use a spatula or wooden spoon to break the meat into small pieces as it cooks. Continue cooking until it is no longer pink, stirring occasionally.
Add any seasonings or aromatics you’d like to the pan, such as onions, garlic, salt, pepper, or herbs. Stir to combine. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it is browned and fully cooked through.
Remove the skillet from the heat and use a slotted spoon to transfer the browned turkey to a plate lined with paper towels. This will help to absorb any excess oil or moisture. Another way to further reduce the amount of fat is you can add it into a colander and run hot water over the top. Remember that fat = flavor though so what little it has should be left there.
How Long to Cook Ground Turkey Meatloaf
Cook time is not going to change a lot with ground meats made into different dishes. The biggest difference is the fat content. With leaner choices like this you will need to add a bit more oil to brown in a skillet or in a mix for moisture.
Ground turkey can be a good choice for meatloaf for a few reasons: It has a lower fat content typically than ground beef, which can make it a healthier choice for turkey meatloaf. It can also be a good option for people who are looking to reduce their overall fat intake.
Typically this variety has a milder flavor. That makes it a good choice for meatballs since it can take on a variety of seasonings and flavors without overpowering them.
Health Benefits: This is a good source of protein, vitamins B6 and B12, and minerals. Choosing ground turkey over ground beef can be a good way to incorporate these nutrients into your diet.
Ground Turkey Taco Seasoning
Maybe it is Tuesday and it is time for a Mexican meal for your family right?? Well yes we are like you and think of different type of taco recipes we can make but it can get boring if you don’t mix it up here and there. The best way to do just that is to change up the proteins used and the seasonings too. Here is a great way to do just that beyond using packaged mixes. Combine;
- 1 tablespoon chili powder + 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon oregano, paprika, salt and pepper
Get out a small dish so you can incorporate it all and have it ready.
- Once you have everything mixed together until combined set it aside until you’re ready.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat for how to cook ground turkey on the stove.
- Add 1 pound of raw ground turkey meat to the skillet and cook until browned, can add 1 tbsp olive oil to prevent sticking
- Break it into small pieces as it cooks.
- Add the taco seasoning to the skillet with the ground turkey and stir to combine.
- Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until meat is fully cooked, reaches 165 degrees fahrenheit inside, and the seasoning is well distributed.
I use this for lots of different dishes beyond just this protein too though. You can add it into your chicken fajitas too for a lot of flavor. Add red pepper flakes to make it spicy or chili powder for some heat.
Tips for Cooking Ground Turkey
I hope we have shared them all with you here so you can make it as an easy and healthy weeknight meal for your family. Whether you make ground turkey stir fry with it when done, keep simple wrapped inside a tortilla or included in a spaghetti dish you should now be able to do it all.
It should be a light brown color without any pink inside when cooked to a safe temperature. Best way to check is to use a meat thermometer and see if it registers 165 degrees F, then you will be assured it is safe to consume.
That depends on the cooking method you choose but typically you’re looking at 10 – 15 minutes or so. We will share how long to cook ground turkey here in this post in the Instant Pot, in a skillet on the stove, in a slow cooker and the oven as well.
How do You Store Leftover Ground Turkey
You can make a really large batch to help with meal prep later on. Saves time if you cook, cool, and store for later for sure. To do this, let the seasoned ground turkey cool to room temperature before storing it. This will help to prevent condensation from forming inside the container, which can lead to bacterial growth. Transfer to an airtight container or a plastic freezer bag. Be sure to remove as much air as possible before sealing it.
Label the container or bag with the date and contents so you can easily identify it later. Store the ground turkey in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
When you’re ready to use your leftovers, simply thaw it in the refrigerator overnight (if frozen). Reheat it in the microwave or warm until turkey is cooked on the stove. Be sure to reheat the ground turkey to an internal temperature of 165 degrees to ensure it is safe to eat.
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How Long to Cook Ground Turkey
- 1 skillet
- * If you want to add onions and green pepper add those first with the oil for a few minutes with oil to soften a bit. Then proceed with meat.
- Add a tablespoon or two of oil to the pan to prevent the meat from sticking. Once the pan is hot, add ground turkey to the pan. Use a spatula or wooden spoon to break the meat into small pieces as it cooks. Continue cooking until it is no longer pink, stirring occasionally.
- Add any seasonings or aromatics you'd like to the pan such as minced garlic, salt, pepper, taco seasoning or herbs. Stir to combine. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it is browned and fully cooked through.