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Beyond Butterball: 3 Food Hotlines That Can Help You Out of a Thanksgiving Disaster

Emily Petsko
iStock/Kerkez
iStock/Kerkez / iStock/Kerkez
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Butterball’s Turkey Talk-Line (1-800-BUTTERBALL) is one of the biggest Thanksgiving helplines around, but it’s not the only show in town. Other companies offer hotlines staffed with experts who want to help you prepare the best turkey possible—plus delectable side dishes and desserts. If you need a little help in the kitchen this Thanksgiving, here are a few other hotlines you can lean on.

1. USDA Meat & Poultry Hotline

Call 1-888-674-6854 or email MPHotline.fsis@usda.gov.

If you’re unsure how long to leave your turkey in the oven, call up the Department of Agriculture’s handy hotline, which is open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET on Thanksgiving. They can also answer questions about other types of meat, egg products, and food storage.

2. Jennie-O Turkey Helpline

Call 1-800-887-5397, text TURKEY to73876, or launch the live chat.

One of Butterball’s competitors, Jennie-O, also offers a helpline. Check out their live chat, which is ideal for cooks in need of some quick answers.

3. Food52 Digital Hotline

Visit the Food52 website.

Amanda Hesser, former food editor for The New York Times Magazine, launched this website and Q&A forum in 2009 to help solve people’s cooking conundrums. Just post a question to the online forum, and you’ll get a prompt response from one of Food52’s editors—or perhaps even a notable food writer or chef.

A version of this story ran in 2018; it has been updated for 2021.

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