Thanksgiving Turkey, deep fried to perfection with Butterball XL/XXL Turkey Fryer!


The tradition in the south for deep frying the Thanksgiving turkey, has led to some flaming mishaps; a hot vat of oil is not the safest of cooking mediums –this Butterball turkey fryer is the safe alternative to outdoor open vat frying. Turkey at Thanksgiving is a familiar tradition but deep frying it, less well known in some parts of America, so a review of the appliances available, seemed a useful activity. Although there are many health articles about the concerns over high fat diets, there are some flavors that cannot be reproduced without cooking in oil. So, for those of you who enjoy a deep fat tradition, this review will hopefully give you useful information on one of the most popular, highly rated and effective turkey fryers on the market.

Style File
The Butterball Turkey Fryer is a counter top fryer with a stainless steel housing and porcelain-coated inner pot, with built-in drain valve for easy cleaning. It measures approximately 16 by 15 by 14 inches and weighs 23 pounds. It has a storage compartment for the power cord, useful for putting it away, but actually rather tricky to find! It is hidden away at the back of the unit, and Amazon rather helpfully provides a sequence of images to help you locate the compartment!

Product Details of Masterbuilt Butterball XL Turkey Fryer

The Butterball turkey fryer can accommodate a turkey up to a weight of 14 lbs, and because it uses about two thirds of the oil used by standard turkey fryers, it is a healthier option than other fryers. There is no need for bulky propane gas, but you must never forget that the Butterball turkey fryer is an indoor fryer and is not suitable for using outside. The controls are very simple and easy to read, a digital timer from 0 to 99 minutes, a red power light to tell it is on, and a green light when “ready” and the desired temperature reached.

The temperature is set by a simple turn dial and goes up to 375 degrees. A clever feature is the foldaway lid, with inbuilt filter to reduce cooking odors and a glass viewing pane for checking on progress. Inside, there is a deep basket for frying your turkey, or other foods and a clever drain clip, hook the basket on, drain the oil, then lift the basket out. The porcelain-coated inner pot, the lid, the spigot and the frying basket are all dishwasher safe. The stainless steel heating element is wipe-clean, and the oil can be easily drained from the inner pot via a drain valve at the bottom corner. The estimated time to cook a 14lb turkey is 57 minutes! The Butterball turkey fryer can also be used as a steamer/boiler, with water instead of oil.

Customer reviews, raves and criticisms

This comes out top amongst indoor fryers in the Amazon reviews, and elsewhere, reviews are just as positive. Features that attract the most positive remarks are; the cooking time, being as stated; the oil when drained being virtually clean and the turkey not at all greasy; and ease of washing up of the parts.

Some limitations noted by customers are, that the cord, which tucks away very well, is a bit short, so you need easy access to a socket. Also, the unit only holds just under 2 liters of oil, so the largest turkey when added to the hot oil, will cool it down, this will add to the cooking time, and means that your turkey may not be as crispy as you may like it.

Most customers report that a 12lb bird cooks perfectly in this Butterball turkey fryer. From a safety point of view, the majority of customers were pleased to have an electric indoor oil fryer with a cool to the touch casing, economic use of oil, and good fastening lid with a window viewer. As with most Masterbuilt products there is a very useful owner’s manual and it is advisable to read through it before using your electric fryer for the first time. For example, if you turn the unit on without anything in it, the fryer will automatically shut itself off, a good safety feature, and you need to press the reset button to get the Butterball turkey fryer to start again.

Unless you read the manual, you would not know this and might think the unit had stopped working! Some customers have used the Butterball turkey fryer as a steamer, with water instead of oil, and report that it is very effective, and temperatures are excellent. The drain tap is acclaimed to be a very efficient feature, and cleaning up is especially praised for being quick and efficient. Customers recommend using it on a covered patio or in the garage as the steam vent in the lid could make a kitchen somewhat steamy, and potentially greasy. Although it has an in-built filter, there are still some oily smells when cooking.

Availability and Price
The Butterball turkey fryer is available at many electrical appliance stores, with a retail price of around $180, but selling at between $100 and $130 at some outlets. It retails at Amazon for $70.41 including freButterball Indoor Electric Turkey Fryer XL – Turkeys up to 20 lbse shipping.