How to Remove a Turkey Neck Bone

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Neck bones and giblet pieces add rich turkey flavor to slow-simmered gravies and stews. Turkey neck bones are commonly repackaged with turkeys and must be removed before cooking. When turkeys are butchered to be sold in grocery stores, the neck bones are often added to a bag that includes the heart, gizzard and liver. Most giblet bags are made of plastic or paper lined with plastic that can melt in the heat of the oven.

Things You'll Need

  • Fresh or thawed turkey
  • Sharp knife
  • Reach inside the cavity between the wings in the front of the turkey and feel for a bag. The bag may not be in the front cavity.

  • Pinch the edge of the giblet bag with your fingers and pull it out of the cavity slowly. A second bag may be in the rear cavity, even if you find one in the front.

  • Turn the turkey around and reach inside the rear cavity between the drumsticks and feel for a bag.

  • Pinch the edge of the giblet bag with your fingers and pull it out of the cavity slowly.

  • Cut open any bags you find and examine the contents. The neck is usually the largest piece and is curved into a U shape.

Tips & Warnings

  • Brown turkey neck bones over high heat, then add turkey stock and reduce to a simmer to harvest the sweet dark meat.
  • Using the turkey liver to flavor a gravy creates an earthy taste that some eaters may find undesirable.

References

  • Photo Credit turkey necks image by Maria Brzostowska from Fotolia.com
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