TSA Travel Tip: Take the turkey, leave the gravy

Roasted turkey breast with gravy and chorizo stuffing.
Roasted turkey breast with gravy and chorizo stuffing.
John Herschell via Flickr/Creative Commons

Wednesday was the busiest travel day of the Thanksgiving holiday as tens of thousands of people flew into or out of LAX. Thursday is comparatively slow but the TSA isn't letting down its guard, reminding travelers to ditch contraband like switchblades, knitting needles and... gravy?

Yes, indeed.

If you're flying this weekend and want to take your Thanksgiving feast with you, you'll need to follow the rules.

TSA spokesman Nico Melendez tells KPCC you should secure anything you can spill, spray or spread and pack it in your checked baggage. You won't be able to carry it on board.

"Some of the things that aren't allowed are things like the pre-made gravy, cranberry sauce, sometimes it's the sweet potatoes in the can that have a lot of liquid in them. Things like that aren't permitted to go through screening," Melendez says.

You are, however, allowed to bring a turkey — as well as cakes, pies, stuffing, rolls and green beans topped with fried onion strings — in your carry-on luggage.

If your bird is freshly roasted, be careful. Sacramento TSA officer Samantha Harris tells California Public Radio about one passenger who tried to travel with a too hot turkey.

"He did have it in a cardboard box and the steam from the turkey did kind-of ruin the cardboard box," Harris says. "So if you do travel with a cooked turkey it's recommended you might want to put it in either a plastic container or a metal container. But it's not uncommon for people to travel with baked turkeys or baked dishes."

At least you won't be the only one.

Got any last minute questions about edible carry-on do's and don'ts? Tweet a query to "AskTSA."