Turkey Size Calculator

Created by Łucja Zaborowska, MD, PhD candidate
Reviewed by Steven Wooding
Last updated: Dec 22, 2022

Omni's turkey size calculator might have just a perfect answer for the question "How big a turkey for 10 people? 🦃

Find out how many pounds of turkey per person you need, how much time it's going to take for it to unfreeze, and be fully ready to serve.

The short story below will introduce you to our turkey calculator and all the assumptions we made in our tool - get to know your turkey. ⤵️

How big of a turkey should I get?

  • What is the size turkey for 10 people?
  • How to estimate the size of turkey for 8?
  • How big of a turkey for 12?

These questions are a lot easier than you think - carefully count the number of adults, children and vegetarians/vegans at your party (don't forget to check all the other food options for your Thanksgiving party).

  • Kids aged 6-15 usually eat around half of the adults' portion. 🍼
  • Think about your guests and their preferences - e.g., there's a probability that an all-male group will eat considerably more than an all-women gathering.

Your next step will be deciding if you need any leftovers. If you need some of them to make a turkey sandwich or turkey casserole 🥘, be sure to multiply the original amount by 1.5.

Now, as we've covered the general idea, let's proceed to the details used in our turkey portion calculator presented in the next section.

Lbs of turkey per person

Our turkey size calculator assumes that during the Thanskgiving party we usually consume:

  • 1 pound (0.45 kg) of turkey per adult
  • 0.5 pound (0.23 kg) of turkey per child

Do you think it's way too much meat?

Don't forget that we need to incorporate both edible and inedible parts: the weight of the entire turkey consists of bones, fat, skin, tendons, as well as meat. 🍗

Have you already got what you need? Or maybe you're still looking for other holiday food calculators?

Cooking time vs. turkey size chart

The question "How big of a turkey do I need?" usually goes along with "How long will I have to cook it for?". 🤔

We decided to help you out with that task as well; our turkey calculator per person uses the following cooking schemes at 325°F (163°C):

  1. Unstuffed turkey

Every 1 pound of turkey needs 15 minutes in the oven.

  1. Stuffed turkey

Every 1 pound of turkey needs 17.5 minutes in the oven. Ensure that the filling's temperature is equal or above 165°F (74°C).

🙋 This calculator shows a rough estimate of the cooking time; for more detailed calculations, try our turkey cooking time calculator 🍗

You may also try the following estimated cooking time chart:


Cooking time

10-18 lbs (4.5-8 kg)

2.5-5 hours

18-22 lbs (8-10 kg)

4.5-6.5 hours

22-24 lbs (10-11 kg)

5.5-7 hours

24-29 lbs (11-13 kg)

6-8.5 hours

Turkey thawing time

We know you're wondering how to determine what size turkey you need - but it's also essential to know when to start taking care of it if you didn't buy it fresh. Frozen turkey might be a real holiday nightmare, but we've found just the perfect solution!

(Pss, if you're looking for more specific calculations, drop by our turkey defrost time calculator 🧊🧊)

  1. Thawing time in the refrigerator

    The primary step is to know how much turkey per person do you need; find the total weight of your turkey in pounds and then multiply it by 5 h.

    E.g., 20 lb of turkey * 5 h = 100 h = 4 days 4 hours

  2. Thawing time in cold water

    First, find out your turkey's weight in pounds and multiply it by 1 h.

    E.g., 25 lb of turkey * 1 h = 25 h

How to calculate what size turkey to buy?

Our how much turkey do I need per person calculator follows a few basic assumptions:

  • Every adult eats 1 lb of turkey
  • Every child eats 0.5 lb of turkey
  • Leftovers are quite generous and constitute 0.5 of the original portion.

We use the following equation:

Total turkey weight = (No. of adults * 1) + (No. of children * 0.5),


  • Total turkey weight is given in pounds.

To get the total turkey weight with leftovers:

Turkey weight with leftovers = Total turkey weight * 1.5.

Let's follow the example:

I'm having a party for 6 adults and 2 children. How big of a turkey should I buy?

Total turkey weight = (6 * 1) + (2 * 0.5) = 6 lb + 1 lb = 7 lb

Our turkey's going to weigh 7 pounds. 🎉

Łucja Zaborowska, MD, PhD candidate
No. of adults
No. of children
Any leftovers?
Turkey weight
Thawing time
Inside the fridge
In cold water
Cooking time
Unstuffed turkey
Stuffed turkey
Check out 5 similar thanksgiving calculators 🦃
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