What if we told you that you don’t need an oven to enjoy turkey on Thanksgiving? Maybe you don’t have an oven or yours is too small to roast a whole turkey. Or perhaps you’re just sick of the same old roasted bird, with its dry breast meat and stringy legs and thighs.
Welp, we’re here to tell you there is more than one way to cook your bird. From braised to smoked, these alternatives to roasting could very well save your Thanksgiving.
If you’re tired of perpetually dry turkey, braising is your best bet. Skip the breast meat in favor of juicy turkey legs and thighs, then slowly simmer them in a white wine broth flavored with traditional herbs and aromatics.
Deep-fried turkey is a great option if you don’t want to roast a bird but still want an impressive showpiece. Deep-frying your turkey can be dangerous, though, so make sure you prepare it with an abundance of caution. Try this version, which infuses the turkey with Sriracha.
3. Slow cook
Slow cooking your turkey isn’t just a great option for people without a traditional kitchen setup, it’s also a super-easy way to get a moist turkey on the table while keeping the oven free for other cooking projects, like sides and pies. You can broil the turkey when it’s done cooking to crisp up the skin or use a brûlée torch to give it some golden color. But all the focus will really be on the incredibly tender, juicy turkey meat.
4. Spatchcock and grill
Spatchcocking a turkey by removing its backbone and spreading it open is one of the best ways to combat uneven cooking. The dark meat and white meat cook in the same amount of time with this method instead of the usual bone-dry breast meat or underdone legs and thighs compromise. Combine spatchcocking with grilling, and you’re really in for a spectacular treat, whether you give it some barbecue spice or opt for a traditional flavor profile.
Keep reading for 5 more ways to cook your bird!