The 5 Best Electric Turkey Fryers
This wiki has been updated 17 times since it was first published in December of 2016. With one of these electric indoor turkey fryers you no longer have to worry about the hassle, mess, and potential fire danger of cooking with a propane model. They're both fast and efficient at preparing a variety of meals, often able to finish a medium-sized bird in as little as 2 hours. Some of them even utilize oil-convection to cook large roasts without dousing them in fat. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.
October 13, 2020:
If you have ever watched the news or spent some time perusing YouTube around the holidays, you have probably seen videos or heard about people getting injured or starting large fires when trying to fry a turkey in a propane fryer. Luckily, the chances of that happening with one of these electric models is considerably less. There is almost no chance of starting a fire and, as long as you don't try and drop a frozen turkey into one of these and take normal safety precautions as you would around anything containing hot grease, the potential for bodily injury is greatly reduced as well.
If you are trying to save a little money on cooking oil, which can actually be quite expensive, you may want to consider the Presto Profry and Cuisinart CDF-500. Both of these feature a rotating skewer that keeps the bird moving through the oil, so you won't need to completely fill the reservoir as you would with a traditional model. The Butterball Oil-Free is another model that doesn't use much oil. In fact, it uses even less than either of the aforementioned units and is said to be healthier than deep fat frying because it results in turkeys with less calories.
During this update, we decided to remove the Nesco Upright, since it technically isn't a fryer at all, just a really innovative roaster. That being said, as innovative as it is, it doesn't produce that crispy skin most people are looking for when in the mood for fried food.
You'll be hard pressed to find any model that can accommodate turkeys as large as the Butterball XXL, which accepts birds up to 22 pounds. Honestly, we would be surprised if you found any poultry at your local supermarket that wouldn't fit in it. This is closely followed by the Masterbuilt XL, which is considerably more affordable, however it doesn't feature digital temperature control.
September 25, 2019:
The most popular turkey fryers use propane due to the sheer amount of oil and heat needed to cook a large bird, but electric models have a few important advantages. Many use a rotisserie mechanism that keeps only one side of the bird in the oil at all times, which can result in even crispier skin than a deep-fat fryer because it allows moisture to evaporate from the skin with every turn (pro tip: when frying finger foods like french fries or onion rings, remove them from the hot oil just before they're done and let them cool slightly to produce this same ultra-crispy effect in all your meals). Some models, like the Nesco, take the low-calorie initiative a little further and don't use any oil at all, but rather multiple high-powered, infrared heating elements.
With all that said, it's hard to duplicate a fried turkey without completely dunking it in oil. That, combined with somewhat of the company's specialization in whole poultry, makes it no surprise that Butterball's Masterbuilt series makes up some of the most popular and effective electric turkey fryers around. Finally, while electric fryers are generally safer than those with open flames, always pay close attention to how much oil you're using, and don't under any circumstances drop a still-frozen bird into a vat of hot oil.
October 19, 2018:
Deleted two hard-to-find models with safety issues. Added a new hybrid oil/roasting unit as well as the newest large-capacity indoor model. Reviewed all models for safety concerns.