Turkey provides lean protein and less saturated fat than most other meats.
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- Turkey is available all year: whole, cut into pieces, ground, or deli meat.
- Watch for sale prices on turkey, especially in November. Stock up if you can cook or freeze within a few days.
- Ground turkey with a lower percentage of fat costs more per pound but once cooked creates more meat to eat.
- Look for a "Use or Freeze by" date on packages of fresh turkey as a guide to using while best quality. Frozen turkey may also have a "USE by" date.
3 Ways to Thaw Turkey Safely
- Refrigerator: Safest method. Allow 24 hours per pound for ground turkey or individual pieces OR 24 hours for every 5 pounds of whole turkey. Once thawed, cook within 2 to 3 days. Meat thawed in the refrigerator can be re-frozen without cooking, although there may be some loss of quality.
- Cold water: Safe when water stays cold and covers the package completely. Allow 1 hour for the first pound plus 30 minutes for each additional pound Once thawed, cook right away.
- Use a waterproof bag to keep water from touching the meat.
- Submerge it in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes to speed thawing. Never use hot water.
- Microwave: Safe if the meat is cooked immediately after thawing. Use the defrost setting. Be sure the meat can rotate freely within the microwave.
Cook all poultry to 165 degrees F.
Store Well Waste Less
- Keep fresh turkey cold in the refrigerator. Check for a date on the package or use within 3 days after purchase. Freeze for longer storage.
- Keep frozen turkey in the freezer until ready to thaw.
- Refrigerate turkey deli meat and use iwthin 5 days of purchase or opening Freeze for longer storage and use within 2 to 3 months.
- Frefrigerate cooked turkey wihtin 2 hours of cooking. Divide into shallow covered dishes so it cools quickly. Use within 4 days or freeze and use within 2 to 3 months.
When kids help make healthy food, they are more likely to try it. Show kids how to:
- wash vegetables under cool running water.
- sprinkle ingredients on a tortilla for a quesadilla.
- measure spices and other ingredients.