Turkey frying might seem like a challenging task, but with the appropriate appliance you will be able to cook a wonderful, mouthwatering turkey without a fuss.
Turkey fryers are rapidly gaining popularity among small kitchen appliances, as they are multipurpose, efficient and easy to use.
We noticed that the customers’ attention was mainly focused on the price and the size of the device, lacking some other important elements to be considered whenever looking for this type of appliance.
Which are these elements? Below, we have listed the most important criteria as per our experts’ opinions.
Types of turkey fryers
- Indoor purpose
- Outdoor purpose
- Digital solution
- Traditional solution
Size – How many members are there in your family?
Color – you will be limited in this choice since it is mostly focused on stainless steel and black.
All in one/ or not – Are you looking for an all in one solution that can fry, boil, steam and bake?
Why choose this type of fryer over a conventional oven?
This type of fryers delivers more tender and crispy meals than the traditional oven, as many who have done it would attest to.
With the rising demand for multipurpose appliances, there are options for fryers that do more than just fry. They can bake, steam and roast as well.
For example, the Bayou Classic Stainless Steel gives you a multitude of culinary options that you cannot necessarily get in the traditional kitchen oven.
To support your decision-making process and help you make the best decision, we have engaged our best experts to provide their professional feedback on the top performing fryers found on the market.
These professionals have selected different fryers and shortlisted them after conducting different test.
The result of their testing is this complete guide. There is no need for you to look further as our best professionals have done the tests and are here to provide you with the results of their area of expertise.
10 Best Turkey Fryers
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The first thing to bear in mind when looking for a fryer is the composition material. As these devices operate at high temperatures, it’s very important that the material is heat resistant and safe. Respectable manufacturers choose either stainless steel or aluminum when designing an appliance of this kind and we made sure to feature only the best built fryers on our list.
Outdoor devices like the Bayou Classic Turkey Fryer, are made with cast iron to withstand the high temperatures of propane powered flames.
The Butterball Indoor Turkey Fryer is made of stainless steel material while the inner coat of the pot is made of porcelain. These strong materials contribute to the longevity and power of the machines.
Even the handles of the pots are made with user-friendly features in mind. The Bayou Classic Stainless Steel Cookware boasts heavy duty handles that make transportation easy for anyone.
Transporting the appliance from one place to the next, without breaking your back or the machine is a major plus for outdoor cooking devices.
The Cajun Injector’s Electric Turkey Fryer allows for even cooking and heat distribution thanks to its aluminum basket. This particular machine is also CSA certified in great part to the heating element being made of stainless steel material.
Some turkey fryers do not require the use of oil anymore. The infrared technology of the Char Turkey Fryer provides a clean and healthy option for cooking meat without the hassle of oil spills or flare-ups. Since so many of the newer appliances are made of such high-quality material, they are now more versatile and durable than ever before.
The purpose of small appliances in the kitchen is to increase the efficiency and convenience of the cooking process. The fryers we selected are amongst the best performing on the market.
The Bayou Classic 3066A was created to perform at the highest capacity for any user. Entirely made out of stainless steel, this 30-quart stock container comes with its portable gas stove. Using a propane tank is the best recommendation for this appliance to employ its high-heat performance abilities.
The Butterball XXL Digital 22 lb. was made primarily for large families who need meals cooked in half the regular time. The built-in timer and temperature controls help cut down cooking time while still delivering perfectly cooked meals.
Another popular one, the Bayou Classic, was also created with time efficiency in mind. This machine can cook meals in less than 45 minutes. The stainless steel thermometer helps the users monitor heat temperatures thoroughly and prevent over-frying.
Ease of Use
Gone are the days of having to step outside and cook large meals on a grill or propane stove top. Now, these appliances are manufactured to work either indoors or outdoors. They have also been designed with the option to use electricity instead of the traditional propane tank.
Indoor fryers are safe and efficient. The Cajun Injector’s Electric Fryer comes with a safety shut off switch that makes it easy for users to monitor their food. A number of fryers on our list also come with temperature controls and timers to ensure safety and proper cooking.
The size of the Bayou Classic 1036 is a design to consider. It is a turkey fryer that can be used both indoors and outdoors. The aluminum container and easy to grip handles make it seamless to transport anywhere. The versatility of this appliance is something you certainly cannot overlook.
Care and Maintenance
Older models of fryers have made some people weary of their overall maintenance and care. However, the machines on our list not only deliver great performance for cooking, but are also designed to make cleaning much more easier.
The built-in the drain of the Butterball XXL Digital 22 lb allows users to get rid of the oil more effortlessly than ever before. Additionally, the porcelain coating of the inside container ensures that food will not stick to the walls. The Cajun Injector’s Electric Fryer has a swing out drain valve that allows users to quickly remove oil after using the machine.
Because of the stainless steel components and materials of all the appliances, cleaning is more convenient than it has been before.
The Char Turkey Fryer eliminates the need to use oil which makes the cleanup process very undemanding. No oil spots, spills or flare-ups to deal with anymore.
Users should take advantage of the easy to clean options that manufacturers have placed in the appliances on our list. The consistent and careful cleaning of the fryer will ensure its sustainability and performance. When you are not using the outdoor models, be sure to store them in cool and dry places so that the weather does not take its toll on them.
For indoor machines, you can store them virtually anywhere. Be cautious not to spill oils or liquids on the electrical cords so that you prevent risks of sparks or damaging the electrical system of the fryer.
The Healthiest Way to Fry Turkey
Deep frying any food can be considered an unhealthy way to cook, but when we think of frying food, what generally comes to mind is commercially produced deep fats fried foods that are generally high in calories, saturated, and trans fats.
However, when you fry food at home, you are able to control what oil you use and how long your food will cook. The oil that you choose to fry your food can affect the quality, taste, and nutritional value of your dish.
Deep Fried Turkey
Whenever you think of fried food, you may have a mental image of a meal drenched in grease. However, deep fried turkey is not greasy. When you deep fry a turkey, the frying process seals the outside and helps preserve the juiciness while the skin is crispy. Even though you may place a mouth-watering bird on the table, how do you know that it is healthy for you?
First, let’s compare the calories and grams of fat from a roasted turkey and a deep-fried turkey. There is a very subtle difference when comparing a four-ounce serving of each.
The roasted turkey has 241 calories and 12 grams of fat, while the deep-fried turkey contains 253 calories and just under 14 grams of fat.
Another way to determine the healthiest solution for a deep-fried turkey is considering what oil you want to fry your food in. It’s important to consider which oil you want because each oil provides different saturated fats.
Choosing Your Oil
When you are determining the best oil for your turkey, it is also very important to consider that oil’s smoking point when cooking with fats and oils. It is crucial to note that once an oil goes past its smoking point, the oil can start smoking and produce carcinogenic substances.
On this note, it is also imperative that you do not use extra virgin olive oil because five gallons worth of it at 350℉ (its smoke point is only 320℉) will create an intense blaze.
Traditionally, fried turkey is prepared in 100% peanut oil because it naturally sustains high temperatures during the cooking process. Using peanut oil to fry your turkey results in it being crispy on the outside, moist on the inside, and a nutty taste.
Overall, peanut oil is highly recommended because its high smoke point of 450℉ allows the oil to reach the correct temperature to fry your turkey appropriately without giving it a burnt flavor. Peanut oil also does not absorb the flavor of foods that it cooks.
Why is peanut oil one of the healthiest choices? It is naturally trans-fat free, cholesterol free, low in saturated fats, and is high in unsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats. Peanut oil also contains a natural source of vitamin E and Phyto sterols, which is heart-healthy.
Canola oil is low in saturated fat and high in monosaturated fat. This can be considered a reason why it may be more healthy than peanut oil. Although, canola oil is considered debatable because of how it is chemically extracted.
Previously, coconut oil was thought to be unhealthy. Recently, it has been receiving a lot of attention as a healthier fat product.
When you are looking to fry your meal, it is best to use refined coconut oil over unrefined because unrefined coconut oil has a very low smoke point and is best to not cook with at high temperatures or even stir frying at low temperatures.
However, refined coconut oil can be brought to a high temperature around 325℉ – 375℉ and is high in saturated fats. Coconut oil is also advantageous because it is high in medium chain triglycerides.
Sunflower oil is a lot like peanut oil as they both are higher in heart healthy monounsaturated fats. The only difference between these oils is that sunflower oil is particularly lower in polyunsaturated fats. You will also find that sunflower oil has a smoke point of 450℉.
Corn, Soy, Canola, or Vegetable Oil
Corn, soy, canola, and vegetable oil are considered to not be the healthiest choices for frying turkey because they are low in saturated fats and high in omega 6 fatty acids, which can potentially increase inflammation in the body if there is too much in your diet.
Other Oils to Consider
If you want the same effects from an oil that you find with peanut oil, then you want to look for oils that are high in monosaturated fats because they have high smoke points and support extreme heat, making them an ideal choice for deep frying. These other oils to consider are:
- Almond oil- 420℉ smoke point
- Avocado oil- 520℉ smoke point
- Macadamia nut oil- 390℉ smoke point
- Walnut oil- 400℉ smoke point
- Rice bran oil- 490℉ smoke point
- Polyunsaturated fats that can be substituted for peanut oil include:
- Cottonseed oil- 420℉ smoke point
- Grapeseed oil- 392℉ smoke point
- Sesame oil- 410℉ smoke point
Even though peanut oil is highly recommended as the best oil and healthiest choice, some people may find this an issue as they have nut allergies. If you have peanut allergies, then you may want to consider corn oil, or sunflower oil. Corn oil also has a smoke point of 450℉. However, its flavor is somewhat less neutral than what you will find with peanut oil.
Each oil has their own benefits and drawbacks when it comes to frying. Some will help deliver a more nutritious and delicious meal, while others can practically make your food hazardous. You also need to take into consideration which oil will have an overpowering or more neutral flavor for your turkey.
It is important to consider oils that have nutrients that are beneficial to your heart health, as oil and grease so have the unfortunate potential to clog arteries.
Q. Can you cook other meats?
Yes. In particular the Bayou Classic Stainless Steel can cook other meats such as pork tenderloin, beef roasts etc. This appliance easily allows you to cook vegetables, seafood and more. It is user-friendly, so switching between different kinds of food is not a problem. There are many all in one machine that gives you a plethora of options.
Q. Are turkey fryers easy to clean?
Many models are manufactured to make the cleaning process easier, considering the oil and mess that meats can leave behind. The Butterball XXL Digital 22 lb. in particular has a built in drain and porcelain coating to make cleanup a breeze.
The Char Turkey Fryer is also a great model when it comes to easy cleaning because it does not use any oil whatsoever. Nearly all machines, however, come with drains to ease the disposal of the oils.
Q. Which fryer is the best in size?
All models come in different sizes depending on your needs. The Bayou Classic Turkey Fryer is relatively light in weight. This makes it easy for carrying and transportation.
Q. Is it safe to use one?
Yes. There are many designs out there that are manufactured with safety in mind. Infrared models are gaining a lot of popularity. They are also considered to be a healthier alternative than the traditional oil fryer. The Char Turkey Fryer’s infrared technology provides a clean and neat environment with no oil spills.
This particular technology also prevents flare-ups, the main concern that some have with older models of fryers. The digital control pad on the Waring Turkey Fryer enables you to set a timer and temperature adjustment depending on the food you are cooking.
Plus, the indicator light prompts you when the oil is at the right temperature and therefore preventing burning and overheating.
Q. How will I know when the meat is cooked thoroughly?
Each fryer should come with a meat thermometer that allows you to test your meat before taking it out. Be sure to carefully determine your desired meat’s temperature at its cooked state when using the thermometer. The Waring TF250 has a state of the art digital interface that bears a blinking indicator light when the oil has reached the perfect temperature for cooking.
The Bayou Classic Turkey Fryer can cook it in as little as 45 minutes. All machines have been selected with efficiency and safety in mind. The ones we feature will tell you when your food is ready to prevent scorching and over cooking.
Q. Can a fryer do more than just fry or bake my food?
Yes. There are models out there that can do more than the traditional frying. The Bayou Classic Stainless Steel Cookware can steam and boil too! It is also not limited to this type of food either. Along with other meats, you can even use it to cook vegetables and seafood.
The Oster CKSTRS23-SB 22-Quart is an all in one device that can roast and bake the way you would do so in a conventional oven.
Q. Do all operate using propane tanks?
No. There are many electric options as well. The Butterball Indoor offers an electric plug-in and uses 33% less oil than the traditional fryer. The XXL Digital 22 lb Indoor Model comes with a built-in timer and variable temperature control.
It was designed to make it more time and energy efficient for larger families. In fact, many electric options are manufactured to use indoors so that families can utilize the machines all year round, regardless of the season.
However, if you like the distribution of heat from a traditional propane tank, the Bayou Classic uses propane to properly circulate the oil to prevent scorching at the bottom.
Q. Should the fryer be used indoors or outdoors?
There are models to fit both needs. The Bayou Classic 1036 was designed to be used in either environment due to its shape and size. Other fryers have been designed to be used indoors so that you can enjoy meals through every season.
The best indoors ones are the Bayou XXL and the Cajun Injector Electric Turkey Fryer. However, if you are looking for an outdoors option, there are great models to choose from. The Bayou Classic Turkey Fryer is ideal for outdoors due to its size and versatility. It is made of commercial grade aluminum which enables even heat distribution. It is also very affordable which is a plus.
Q. Which one is best for seamless storage?
The Oster Quart could be easily stored in a pantry or large cabinet. It has a low profile, so it may also work fine on any kitchen countertop. The Butterball XXL Electric is an indoor electronic machine that was designed to fit into any household kitchen. It boasts a square shape and also has a low height to fit into standard cabinets or on countertops underneath them. Although it was created for larger families with its high capacity container, it can be tucked away easily when not in use.
We have presented ten different fryers that delivered an outstanding performance when tested. We believe that each of you will be able to find the one tailored to your needs.
Our experts made sure to “stress test” the appliances to different challenging cooking, cleaning or assembling processes, and they still provided the same excellent performance at the end. As a result, quality, performance, and durability are high for each of the ten items selected for this guide.
By going through our in-depth reviews, you will be able to find out all the details regarding each fryer and therefore choose the right option for your kitchen.