Follow these simple food safety guidelines:
Thaw frozen turkey in the refrigerator or cold water.
Keep thawed or fresh turkey in the refrigerator.
Prevent uncooked juices from dripping onto other foods in the refrigerator by placing packaged turkey on a tray.
Thawed turkey may be kept in the refrigerator up to four days before cooking.
Roast fresh turkey as soon as possible, but no later than the "use by" date on the package.
Place raw poultry on non-porous surfaces; these are easy to clean. It is recommended to use two cutting boards, one strictly to cut raw meats and the other for cooked and ready-to-eat foods. Cutting boards should be washed thoroughly in hot, soapy water after each use and allowed to air dry or dried with fresh paper towels.
Use paper towels, not cloth, to wipe off turkey and clean up juices.
Combine stuffing ingredients and stuff turkey just before roasting, not the night before.
Wash hands, work surfaces and utensils touched by raw poultry and its juices with hot, soapy water and disinfectant.
Use cooking methods that allow the turkey to reach an internal temperature of 140°F in less than four hours and a final temperature of 180°F in the thigh. If stuffed, the stuffing should reach 165°F. Avoid using low roasting temperatures or partial cooking methods.
Use a meat thermometer to determine turkey's doneness.
Store turkey, stuffing, gravy, broth and other leftover cooked foods in separate containers in the refrigerator within two hours after cooking.