To kill the turkey, hang it by its feet. Hold the head and beak with one hand as you cut the turkey's throat with the other hand. Cut from one side of the neck to the other, severing the jugular vein, trachea and carotid arteries as you pull the knife quickly across the neck.
Butchering a turkey isn't a job for everyone, and is often best left to a professional. However, if you have the space and the equipment, don't be afraid to give it a try. A freshly-butchered turkey will be more tender, juicy and flavorful than anything you can buy in a store.
Things You'll Need
- Sharp knife
- Large pot
- Poultry shears
- Propane torch or blow torch
Heat a large pan of water to 145 degrees. Let the turkey soak water for 45 seconds. Remove the bird from the water and let it cool. Then remove the feathers, leaving the small pinfeathers.
Singe the bird to remove the pin feathers. This can be done with a propane torch or blow torch, but be careful not to get the flame too hot. Run the flame quickly over the entire turkey, just enough to singe the pinfeathers. A few of the feathers at the tips of the wings may need to be removed with pliers.
Lay the bird breast up on a table and cut between the joints of the knees to remove the feet. Remove the skin flaps between the legs and around the anus, which will open up the body cavity. Cut out the gland under the anus. Be careful not to cut any organs.
Reach into the body cavity and remove the organs, including the liver, heart, gizzard, kidneys, esophagus and trachea. Keep the liver, heart and gizzard if you want to cook them, and discard the rest.
Wash all of the parts thoroughly before you cook them. If you aren't planning to cook the turkey immediately, package it and store it in the refrigerator or freezer.
Tips & Warnings
- If you want to kill the turkey in a more humane manner, cut the head completely off. The turkey will die in seconds, but will not bleed as much.
- When you kill the turkey, wear goggles to protect your eyes from the flapping wings.
How to Kill a Turkey
Butchering a turkey isn't a job for everyone, and is often best left to a professional. However, if you have the space......
How to Freeze & Cook Wild Turkey
Butcher knife; Freezer bags; Freezer; Food brush; Oil or butter; Stuffing; Baking bags; Baking pan; Oven; ... Turkeys have long been one...
How to Slaughter a Chicken Humanely
Knowing how to kill a chicken in a quick and humane fashion gives you the ability to ... Humanely Kill a Chicken;...
How to Cut Out a Turkey Neck
Butchering a turkey is similar to dressing chicken or game birds but everything is bigger and tougher. Once the turkey is plucked,...
How to Butcher a Goose
Roast goose is very tasty and often preferred by some to turkey. The meat is darker and contains far more flavor, especially...
How to Get Rid of Turkey Mites
Turkey mites are actually an immature form of tick. ... This will kill or weaken the turkey mites and kill many other...
How to Carve Good Turkey Breast Meat
Learn how to carve good turkey breast meat with expert holiday dinner tips in this free video recipe.
How to Feed Turkeys
You're raising turkeys to make a profit so you want your turkeys to grow large and healthy quickly. You want to make...
How to Pick Chicken That's Organic and Humanely Raised
Selecting an organic and humanely raised chicken from the local grocer may seem simple enough, ... How to Kill a Turkey. Killing...
How to Butcher a Goat
Butchering animals in an inexpensive way to fill the freezer. ... Home butchering dairy goats to cull the herd can be a...