What's the Quickest Way to Thaw a Turkey for Thanksgiving?

Wondering how and when to thaw a frozen turkey? You've come to the right place.

The Thursday before Thanksgiving you're supposed to take your frozen turkey out of the freezer and allow it to thaw slowly in the fridge. The rule of thumb says that for every four pounds of bird, allow it one day to thaw in the refrigerator. But what if it's 24 hours before the big holiday and the turkey is still frozen solid? Whatever you do, DO NOT break out the hairdryer, and please, please do not even think about wrapping it burrito-style in a heating blanket. Wondering how to thaw a turkey? You've come to the right place.

Related: 15 Best Thanksgiving Turkey Recipes

What's the quickest way to thaw a turkey?

In the bathtub. At the advice of Butterball Turkey Talk Line's Richard "RJ" Jaramillo, get the kids out of the bathtub and sit your Thanksgiving turkey in its original packaging breast-side down in the middle of a pool of cool water. Using this quick thaw method, the turkey will defrost at the rate of 30 minutes for every one pound of bird. So a 12-pound turkey should be completely thawed in 6 hours, and a 16-pounder in 8. Be sure to use cool water–not hot–or you'll shock the packaging, and cycle out the water every hour or so to keep it at a warmer temperature, ensuring a speedy thawing time.

Related: How Long to Cook a Perfect Turkey

Still in a panic? Take a deep breath and give the Turkey Talk Line a call. Once the panic is over, you can start focusing on other holiday dinner tasks, like what type of Thanksgiving side dishes you want or, better yet, what type of Thanksgiving desserts you're going to whip up for family and friends.

Next, check out:

17 of the Best Vegan Thanksgiving Main Dish Recipes.
100+ Best Thanksgiving Desserts
How Many Sweet Potatoes Should I Make Per Person?
Best Thanksgiving Side Dishes