Different ways To Cook A Turkey[twitter]That flip of the calendar into October brings a sudden crush of reality: Fall is here, and so is feasting.

Thanksgiving isn’t as big a deal in Canada as it is in the US, so while we all have traditional recipes for the big Christmas dinner, I like to break out different things for Thanksgiving. October feasting season is when I’ll try new rubs, methods of cooking, or even turkey substitutes. I look at it as a way to adapt extended family traditions to create new immediate family ones.

That traditional adaptation has made our Christmas dinner a feast of cabbage rolls, borscht, and perogies, while we save the turkey for Thanksgiving. My wife isnt a huge bird fan, so I’m constantly trying to find new and different ways to have a ‘traditional’ feast in un-traditional ways.

If you’re looking to bring a new twist to your Thanksgiving turkey table, here’s 5 different ways to cook a turkey for Thanksgiving:

Southwestern Turkey

This southwestern roasted turkey has a spicy, crispy kick when you use a butter, chili, and chilies mix to baste the outside of the bird. [recipe]

Southwestern Turkey

Beer and Rosemary Turkey

This is as close as you might get to a beer can turkey (unless you have a bigger set up and grill and can stuff a keg under your bird). Basting your turkey with beer? Sign me up. [recipe]

Beer Can Turkey

The Best Brined Turkey

Brining has been the trendy way to cook a turkey of late, with people swearing by the moistness of the meat. I’ve had it on my kitchen checklist to try, and this just might be the year to do it. You’ll have to plan ahead as you need to soak the turkey for 24 hours before you cook it, and make sure your brining bucket is big enough! [recipe]

brined turkey

Oven Roasted Turkey Breast

If you don’t have a huge family table to set (or if someone in the family is not a turkey fan – like my wife), then dial it back and just roast a turkey breast instead of the entire bird. You get all the festive tradition of turkey, with none of the leftovers! [recipe]

roast turkey breast

Cornish Game Hen

If you want your feast to have fowl, and be smaller, serving a Cornish Game Hen is a wonderful way to twist the tradition and still have a roasted bird for Thanksgiving. At only 1 1/2 lbs, it’s the perfect dinner for two! [recipe]

Cornish Game hen

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5 different ways to cook a turkey

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