According to my fellow Southerners down Missouri ways, this is the proper way to field dress a snapping turtle…


1. Keep the turtle in a bucket of clean water before killing it. Change the water every few days as the turtle empties its digestive system. The wait usually takes one to two weeks. Proceed when the water remains clear.

2. Poke the stick near the turtle’s head. When the turtle bites the stick, slowly draw his head out. Use the knife to slice off the turtle’s head. Hang the turtle upside down and allow it to bleed out. Allow it to hang overnight.

3. Cut off the turtle’s feet once it has bled out. Cut away the skin around the shell and peel away. Cut through the soft places on the belly where the shell connects and remove the shell.

4. Remove the turtle’s innards and the yellow fat around the meat. Break off the legs and neck by twisting and breaking them off with your hands.

5. Leave the meat on the bone and wash with cold water until clean. Turtle meat tastes best if cooked immediately, according to the Missouri Department of Conversation. Freeze if not using right away.

Recipes vary from “bread the meat and fry it like chicken” to more involved recipes involving garlic, potatoes, leeks, etc…

I would start simple and then work your way into the more involved recipes…

The wicked flee when none pursueth..." - Proverbs 28:1