Calculate what Christmas Turkey size you need with our handy guide

We find ourselves wondering the same age-old question every festive season... What turkey size do I need this year?

Working out turkey size and how many people your turkey will feed can be stressful, particularly when you have a million other things to think about in the build up to Christmas. Christmas dinner is all about planning and getting your timings right.

If you’re not prepared, you might end up with under-cooked turkey, overdone veg and soggy Brussels sprouts (or you might end up eating VERY late in the day), and no one wants to be held responsible for ruining Christmas by a load of hangry guests.

Worse still, if you end up with a wrong size turkey, you could end up with miniature portions, or so much leftover that it will end up in the compost bin and you feeling very guilty about the waste. So we’ve simplified things for you so you can work out exactly how big a turkey you’ll need to feed all your guests, plus have a little leftover for the next day (because we all love leftovers on Boxing Day or even a turkey curry!)

How to work out how many people your turkey will feed

Turkey size varies hugely. They come in all sizes – you can even get up to a 9kg bird, which will happily serve a huge group of more than 24 people, with plenty leftover even for the next day. If you’ll only be celebrating Christmas day with a few people, then there’s a turkey for you too, without mounds of meat leftover for what feels like weeks after. If there’s just two of you and a whole bird will be too much, you can opt for a turkey crown.

There’s a rough formula for calculating what bird size you need.

If you’re feeding up to 9 people, then you want to allow about 1lb or about .4kgs of turkey per person.

If you’re hosting 10 or more guests then you want to allow about .8 of a lb, or about .35kgs of turkey per person.

What turkey size will I need?

Don’t worry though, you don’t have to do the turkey size maths! We’ve done the hard part for you. We’ve listed what turkey size to buy below, depending on the number of people at your gathering:

  • Turkey size for 3-4 people: A 1.5-1.75kg/3-4lb bird
  • Turkey size for 5-6 people: A 2-3kg/5-6lb bird
  • Turkey size for 7-9 people: A 3-3.5kg/7-8lb bird
  • Turkey size for 10-12 people: A 4-4.5kg/9-10lb bird
  • Turkey size for 13-15 people: A 4.5-5kg/10-11lb bird
  • Turkey size for 16-18 people: A 5.5-6.5kg/12-14lb bird
  • Turkey size for 20-24 people: A 6.75-7.75kg/15-17lb

Once you’ve worked out how many people your turkey will feed, why not try our Christmas turkey recipe for the best way to prepare it this Christmas. If you want to create the perfect festive feast, we’ve got all the Christmas recipes you might need to go with your turkey, including starter recipes, side dishes and plenty of show-stopping desserts too!

There you have it – your easy guide to figuring out what size turkey you need to buy for Christmas this year!