Dairy-free Deep Fried Turkey

Dairy-free Deep Fried Turkey

Our tradition every year is to have a fabulous Friendsgiving, with a big turkey and the traditional sides.  This year, we decided to add a this deep fried turkey to the mix. I was a little worried about making a deep-fried turkey, but my husband took on the whole ordeal and did quite a good job if I do say so.

deep fried turkey

Friendsgiving is a great mish-mash of all of different friend groups.  Every year we get together, have some drinks and share a big table full of food.  

We seem to grow each year– sometimes we’re adding new faces, some years there’s a few more furry friends, and the last few years our friends have had little ones.  

But every year we all come together, thankful for good times and delicious food to share with one another.  I realize how truly lucky we are to have such wonderful friends around each and every year. 

We received a deep fryer a few months ago, and it was my husband’s goal to give a deep-fried turkey a shot.  I was a little more of a skeptic, with all of the horror stories that you hear about houses blowing up, so I made sure he did his research.

(I also roasted a turkey in the oven, my fail-safe recipe, just in case.)

Here’s what he did.

preparing the deep fried turkey


He started out doing research, using the book from the turkey fryer and some online sites to figure it out.  We highly recommend the book from the turkey, as that’s where the most specific information comes from that goes specifically with your turkey fryer.

After that, it was important to be sure we had the necessary materials.  First off was the turkey. We fried a 12 pound turkey, which was the perfect size for our fryer.  

A few more materials he made sure to have were: 

  • Heat-safe gloves: necessary for pulling the turkey out and handling the fryer.
  • Peanut oil: a 3-gallon jug of peanut oil was what worked for our turkey and our fryer.  Be sure to look at the manual from your fryer and determine what you need for your size fryer.
  • Thermometer: Be sure you have a thermometer that can test the heat of the oil as well as have a portion that can be submerged to test the turkey’s temperature. 

After all of the materials were bought, the only left to do was thaw the turkey.  We started thawing the turkey three days before our Friendsgiving in order for it to be ready to dry brine the day before.

The day before

Once the turkey was fully thawed, it was time to add the dry brine.  

In order to dry brine the turkey, first prepare the turkey by rinsing it thoroughly and removing the neck and giblets and anything else that is in the cavity.  Pat the turkey dry so it is ready for the dry brine.

In a small mixing bowl, mix together the sugar, salt, and pepper.  Apply liberally to the outside of the turkey.  

Next, make the injection liquid. In a small saucepan, melt ½ stick of margarine over medium heat.  Add ½ cup of hot sauce to create a buffalo sauce. If you like more heat, you can increase the amount of hot sauce in the injection liquid to suit your tastes.

Inject the liquid into the turkey. Use the injector that comes with your turkey fryer, or buy one separately.  Add the buffalo sauce liquid to the injector and inject in various areas of the turkey.

Leave the turkey on a sheet tray and cover with plastic wrap.  Refrigerate overnight, up to 24 hours.

Deep-frying the turkey

When it is the day you are ready to cook the turkey, there are a few steps to follow.  

First, rinse the turkey thoroughly to remove the dry brine.  Drain and dry the turkey, being sure to get all of the moisture off of the turkey.  

Let the turkey sit out to come to room temperature for about 1 hour.  While the turkey is sitting out, prepare the turkey fryer and begin heating the oil.  

Once the oil is up to temperature, turn off the heat. This is an extremely important step and where most fires begin.  Carefully submerge the turkey into the oil, dunking it slightly, pulling it back up, and dunking again.  Repeat this 3 times before completely submerging the turkey.

dairy-free deep fried turkey

Let the turkey cook for the amount of time recommended by your turkey fryer per pound.  For our 12 pound turkey, we cooked it for about 45 minutes.  

Finally, take the turkey out and let it rest.  Allow the turkey to sit on its stand for 20-30 minutes before carving to secure all of its juices.   

turkey frying setup

Deep Frying Safely

One of the biggest problems with deep frying a turkey is being able to do it safely. This was by far my biggest issue with frying the turkey, and I was sure we were completely prepared before beginning.

Some safety tips that we found to be helpful were:

  • Be sure the turkey is completely thawed and dried as much as possible.
  • Make sure the oil does not boil over the pot when you submerge the turkey in the fryer. Set the liquid level with water prior to turning on the fryer so you know you have the correct amount.
  • The flame should be off when you submerge the turkey.
  • Fry the turkey in a well ventilated area away from the house. As you can see in our picture, we also added pieces in to keep the wind from causing a draft on the fryer.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher on hand in case of an issue.
  • Don’t put a grease fire out with water. Always use a fire extinguisher.

Using these safety precautions, being prepared, and doing your research ahead of time will ensure that you have a safe and enjoyable turkey-frying experience!


It is important to be aware of the quantities of ingredients that are low-FODMAP. Here are the quantities of the ingredients in this recipe:

  • Hot sauce: There is no information for traditional hot sauce on the app, however spice can be an IBS trigger and a gut irritant.  If this does not work for you, consider changing the injection liquid. Otherwise change the amount of hot sauce you add to the recipe.
  • Sugar: A low-FODMAP serving size is ¼ cup, therefore the amount spread out over the entire turkey is within the low-FODMAP range.  It will also be washed off prior to cooking.
  • Peanut oil: A low-FODMAP serving size is 1 tablespoon.  It does not contain carbohydrates, therefore it does not have FODMAPs, however it is high in fat.  This can cause gut issues, so be aware of your tolerance levels. When we made the turkey, it was not greasy at all, so it was quite tolerable.

**All low-FODMAP information was obtained using the Monash University App for the low-FODMAP diet. I HIGHLY recommend purchasing it!!***

To sum it up

So there are the tips and tricks we came across in our first turkey-frying experience. This deep fried turkey turned out delicious, and I hope yours will do the same.

Do you have a favorite way to cook your turkey? Share in the comments below!

Made this recipe? Post it on Instagram or Facebook and be sure to tag me @navigatingtheallergiclife or #navigatingtheallergiclife


Dairy-free Deep Fried Turkey

A dairy-free deep fried turkey recipe that is sure to be a hit at your Thanksgiving or holiday dinner.

Course Main Course
Keyword dairy-free, deep fried turkey, Thanksgiving turkey, turkey
Prep Time 2 days 1 hour
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 2 days 1 hour 45 minutes


  • 12-14 lb turkey
  • 1 tbsp white sugar
  • 2 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tbsp black pepper
  • 1/4 cup dairy-free margarine
  • 1/4 cup hot sauce


  1. First, thaw the turkey completely. This should be done at least two days prior to frying the turkey. Be sure the turkey is completely thawed before dry brining.

  2. Once the turkey is completely thawed, make the dry brine. In a small bowl, mix together the sugar, salt and pepper. Rub the dry brine mixture across the entire surface of the turkey, but not under the skin.

  3. Next, make the injector liquid. Melt the dairy-free margarine in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the hot sauce and stir to combine.

  4. Pour the injector liquid into the injector. Use the injector to pierce the skin and inject the liquid in the different areas of the turkey. Be sure to get all of the major areas so the liquid is able to disperse.

  5. Set turkey on a sheet pan and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

  6. 2 hours before you are ready to fry the turkey, remove the turkey from the refrigerator and rinse off the brine. Do not allow any of the brine to stay on the turkey or it will be overly salty.

  7. Dry the turkey thoroughly. The turkey must be completely dry before it can be fried, otherwise you could have splatter, which can lead to a fire. Allow it to sit out for 1 hour to continue drying and come up to room temperature before frying.

  8. Meanwhile, prepare your oil according to your fryer instructions. **See the preparation notes and safety notes in the post above for further precautions and instructions**

  9. Once the oil is ready, put the turkey on the fryer stand. Turn off the burner, and submerge the turkey a 1/3 of the way slowly, then bring it back up. Dunk it again 2/3 way, then bring back up, and finally slowly submerge the entire turkey. Doing this will ensure that the oil does not boil over and the turkey gradually gets to the temperature of the fryer oil.

  10. Leave the turkey in the fryer for 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of your turkey. (We did 45 minutes for a 12 lb turkey.) Use your fryer instructions to determine the cooking time needed for your turkey. Be sure to be checking the internal temperature with a heat safe digital thermometer as well.

  11. Once the turkey is cooked, bring it out onto paper towels and let it drain. Allow it to sit for 30 minutes before carving to ensure the turkey stays juicy.