Most people enjoy turkey on Thanksgiving—but there are so many different ways to cook the bird! You could roast it in the oven, smoke it on the grill, throw it in the instant pot, or even deep fry it.

Yes—you read that correctly. We said deep fry! You might’ve thought that deep frying was just for French fries or shrimp tempura, but alas, a deep-fried turkey is hard to beat. In fact, it may be the most delicious way to cook a turkey, in our opinion. The skin gets crispy, but the meat stays nice and moist. It’s a win-win!

There’s just one caveat if you choose to deep fry a turkey: NEVER deep fry the turkey while it’s still frozen!

Why, you ask? There are lots of reasons, but we’ll let other people tell you. In a YouTube video, a group of Idaho firefighters explained the dangers of putting a frozen turkey in a deep fryer—and it makes a lot of sense.

Because oil has a higher boiling point than water, the ice from a frozen turkey can quickly interact with the oil, causing it to steam. Due to the rapidly expanding steam, the oil will then boil over, causing BLEVE, aka Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion.

Key word: EXPLOSION. This will lierally cause the turkey to catch on fire, making it a danger to everyone around you. Plus you’ll no longer be able to have turkey at your Thanksgiving table!

So how can you avoid a turkey disaster? If you want to deep fry your turkey, simply defrost it beforehand. There’s nothing wrong with setting a thawed turkey into a deep fryer, it’s really the ice on the frozen turkey that causes the problems.

Additionally, you’ll want to use the fryer outside and away from any structures. And be careful with how much oil you put to the pot—it’s important that you don’t overfill it. The temperature of the oil matters too; be sure to keep it under 350 degrees Fahrenheit. The hotter the oil, the more combustible it is!

For more tips on deep frying your turkey, check out the video below. And wait til you see what DOES happen when you deep fry a frozen turkey. Please don’t try this at home!

What’s your preferred way to cook a turkey? Have you ever deep fried a turkey before? Have you ever deep fried a frozen turkey before and ran into any of these issues?