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Thanksgiving Recipes

Recipes for Thanksgiving 2011


The Greatest Grilled Turkey
Courtesy of Hearthland Products-Memphis Wood Fire Grills

Greatest Turkey

For the best turkey you’ve ever had –grill or slow roast your Turkey on the Memphis --it comes out tender and juicy every time!  It’s as easy as your indoor oven, only better flavors.  The turkey drippings may be used to prepare a gravy by placing a metal or aluminum pan on the grill grates, and then a rack in the metal pan that will hold the turkey.  Add about 1/2 cup water, adding more water as necessary to prevent the drippings from scorching. Remove the pan about 30 minutes before the turkey is done cooking."

Prep Time: 30 Min

Cook Time: 12-14 minutes per pound

12 pounds whole turkey –rinsed and patted dry
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive or vegetable oil
¼ cup Salt; and pepper to taste (coarse salt preferred)
Wood Pellets –All Purpose, Hickory or other fruit flavors such as Apple or
Cherry depending on desired taste.

Set the Intelligent Temperature Control on the Memphis Grill to 350˚ F.
Combine oil, salt, and pepper to make a paste. Rub over outside of turkey.
Tie legs together with kitchen twine.
Place turkey breast side up on a metal grate inside a large roasting pan, and cover.
Place turkey on center of rack over pan breast side up, and cover
Grill until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh (avoiding bone) registers 165 degrees in the breast, 175 degrees in the thigh (approximately 12-14 minutes per pound) 
Tent with parchment-lined foil. Let stand 15-20 minutes before carving. Reserve drippings from roasting pan for gravy.

Big Easy® Southern Fried Turkey
Courtesy of Char-Broil

Whole turkey (up to 16 lbs)
Peanut oil
Herb seasoning or favorite low-sugar dry rub

Prepare turkey for cooking and remove the neck, giblets and anything inside the cavity. Pat turkey dry and rub or spray with peanut oil (to help the seasoning adhere). Season the outside with your favorite herb or garlic seasoning and place inside the cooking basket breast side up.

Cook the turkey until the internal temperature is 165˚ F. The outside should be crisp and golden brown.

Allow the turkey to rest for 10-15 minutes while the cooking basket cools before removing. Carve and enjoy.

Louisiana Style Fried Turkey
Courtesy of Char-Broil

Whole turkey (up to 16 lbs)
Peanut oil
Creole dry rub seasoning
Favorite Injectable marinade


Prepare turkey for cooking and remove the neck, giblets and anything inside the cavity. Pat turkey dry and rub with peanut oil.

Inject turkey with a favorite marinade. Inject multiple locations in the breast and legs about ½” apart to evenly distribute the marinade.

Season the outside with Creole seasoning and place in the cooking basket breast side up.

Cook the turkey until the internal temperature is 165˚ F. The outside should be crisp and golden brown.

Allow the turkey to rest for 10-15 minutes while the cooking basket cools before removing. Carve and enjoy.


Charcoal-Grilled Turkey With Fresh Herb Butter
Author: Chris Lilly, 10 time world champion pitmaster (Big Bob Gibson BBQ, Decatur, Alabama)


1 whole turkey (12 pounds)
Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
Coarse ground black pepper
Fresh Herb Butter
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1/3 cup chopped Italian parsley
1/3 cup chopped green onion tops
2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

2 cups turkey stock (as directed)
2 tablespoons water
4 teaspoons cornstarch

Place the whole turkey breast side down on a cutting board.  Remove the neck and giblets and set aside to make the turkey stock. With a sharp knife or a pair of kitchen shears, cut the turkey down each side of the backbone, removing it completely. Open the turkey and press it flat on the cutting board. Using a sharp knife, loosen the breast bone from between the turkey breasts and remove it with your fingers. It is a dark colored bone that is often called a keel bone because of its shape. This will enable the turkey to open completely flat.  Apply a light coat of olive oil to the turkey skin and liberally season the skin with kosher salt and black pepper.

Build a charcoal fire for direct grilling. The heat over the coals should be hot, (approximately 450 to 500˚F).

Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan.  Add the remaining fresh herb butter ingredients, mix well, and keep warm until needed.

To make turkey stock, add 3 1/2 cups water, 1 3/4 teaspoons salt, turkey neck and giblets to a medium sauce pan.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 1 ½ hours.

Place the butterflied turkey directly over the coals, skin side down, and baste with the fresh herb butter.  Grill the turkey for 5-7 minutes or until the skin starts to turn golden brown and begins to crisp.  Transfer the turkey to a 10”x10” baking dish skin side up, place it back on the grill, and baste with fresh herb butter. Cover the grill and close the air dampers reducing the cooking temperature to 350 degrees.  Cook for 2 1/2 hours basting every hour with the remaining fresh herb butter. The internal temperature of turkey thigh should reach 175-180˚F while the breast meat should reach 160-165˚F. Remove the turkey from the grill, cover it with foil, and let it rest for 15 minutes prior to carving.

To make the gravy, scarp all of the drippings and liquid from the bottom of the roasting pan into a small bowl.  Skim the grease from the top of the liquid.  Pour the seasoned liquid, about 3/4 cup, into a small sauce pan. In a small bowl, whisk the 2 tablespoons water with the cornstarch until smooth. Add the cornstarch slurry and 2 cups of the pre-made turkey broth to the sauce pan and heat.  Serve drizzled over the turkey or on the side as table gravy.
Serves: 10


Apple-Cider Brined Turkey
Author: Russ Faulk, Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet

12 pound turkey, fresh or thawed

For the Brining Solution
1 gallon unsweetened apple cider
1 cup sea salt or kosher salt
2/3 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons candied ginger pieces
1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
2 teaspoons allspice berries, cracked
6 whole cloves
3 star anise
1 gallon ice-cold water
1 orange, quartered
2 brining bags

For Roasting the Turkey
1 sweet onion, quartered
1 baking apple, quartered
1 cinnamon stick
Canola oil for brushing the turkey
4 cups apple wood chips, soaked
Foil turkey pan and roasting rack
Cotton string and 1 bamboo skewer

Preparing the Brine Combine ½ gallon of apple cider with all other brine ingredients except the water and oranges in a large stock pot and bring to a boil, stirring until all of the sugar and salt are completely dissolved. Remove from heat.

Stir in the remaining apple cider and the ice water. Place the brine in the refrigerator to cool if necessary.

Brining the Turkey Discard the giblets and neck from the turkey. Rinse and pat dry. Place the quartered orange in the cavity. Place one brining bag inside the other. Working in a large roasting pan or a clean sink, place the turkey inside the inner bag breast-side-down and then fill with the brining solution. Squeeze out all the air and seal the bags, one inside the other, ensuring the turkey is completely submerged. I place the bagged turkey inside a large stock pot to help keep the turkey fully submerged.

Brine the turkey in the refrigerator overnight.

Setting Up the Grill for Indirect Cooking
Soak 2 cups of Apple wood chips in water for at least 30 minutes. Prepare a grill for indirect cooking between 275 and 325 degrees. For hybrid grills, light a charcoal fire on one half the grill and let it burn just until the coals are covered with gray ash and very hot. When the grill is ready, add some of the soaked wood chips to the grill. For a gas grill, place them in smoker drawer; for a hybrid grill, place them on the hot coals. If you have a side-mounted smoker box, you know what to do.

Preparing the turkey for the grill remove the turkey from the brine and pat thoroughly dry with paper towel. Place the onion, apple and cinnamon stick inside the cavity, and then tie the legs together with a cotton string. Pull the skin over the neck opening and secure with a small skewer. Set the turkey on a roasting rack inside a heavy-gauge foil pan. Brush turkey lightly with oil.

Roasting the turkey set the turkey in the pan on the cooking grate in the indirect cooking zone. Pour 1 cup water into the pan. Close the grill and cook over medium heat. To maintain an even temperature with a charcoal grill, add more charcoal regularly (usually a few pieces every half hour or so). Continue adding wood chips as desired.

Check the turkey periodically, you may want to cover the wing tips and/or the whole turkey to prevent the skin from getting too brown. The turkey is done when its juices run clear and the internal temperature of the thickest part of the thigh is about 170 degrees Fahrenheit. Estimate about 12 to 14 minutes per pound, typically 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Remove the turkey from the grill, cover loosely with foil and let stand 15 minutes. (The temperature will rise 5 to 10 degrees as the turkey rests.)

Carve the turkey and serve on a warm platter.
Serves 12 to 14

Roasted Cauliflower
Author: Russ Faulk, Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet

1 large head of fresh cauliflower
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/2 cup vegetable stock
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 cups alder wood chips, soaked

Prepare the grill for indirect cooking at 350 to 375°F.

Remove the leaves and most of the stems from the cauliflower. Cut the florets into bite-sized pieces. Toss the cauliflower with the olive oil, salt and pepper.

Spread the cauliflower into a single layer on a grill-safe baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the indirect cooking zone. Add the alder wood chips for smoke (learn about smoking techniques) and roast with the hood closed for about 60 minutes total, turning once, until the cauliflower is well-browned (you almost can't over do it short of burning the cauliflower).

\With about 20 minutes remaining, place the vegetable stock in a medium saucepan. Reduce over medium heat, stirring frequently, until thick. Whisk in the butter until melted and thoroughly combined. Keep warm.

Remove the cauliflower from the grill once fully-cooked and toss with the reduced vegetable stock. Serve immediately.
Note: For roasting, you will need a cookie sheet or half-sheet baking sheet that is suitable for the grill. Even though we are cooking at medium temperatures, it is advisable to use cookie sheets suitable for at least 500°F maximum temperatures. Some non-stick coatings should not be used at these temperatures. I use a Silpat liner in my baking sheets that is suitable for use up to 480°F.
Serves 4


Cinnamon Ginger Oh So Sweet Potato Fries
Courtesy of Bull BBQ


16 ounces frozen sweet potato fries
1 tablespoon or so of Saigon cinnamon
1 teaspoon or so of ground ginger
¼ cup ish of packed fair trade light brown sugar
Non-stick vegetable spray oil

Preheat your grill to medium high or 425˚ F and then create indirect heat by turning off two inner burners and leaving on two out burners. Place the sweet potato fries in a single layer on a grill griddle, then spray lightly with spray oil and generously sprinkle brown sugar, cinnamon, and ginger over entire mixture, making sure each one gets some coverage. Place griddle on center part of grill and cook for about 7 minutes, keeping watch as they cook quickly. The result can be a softer sweet fry or a let it go a little longer to create a crisper sweet fry. This is a delicious treat for kids and adults alike!

Tip: Take fresh whole sweet potatoes and fry cut them, or julienne into fry shaped slices. I like the skin on, you may like it off, make sure the sweet potato is cleaned well prior to cutting and be aware also that grilling time may be slightly quicker due to fresh state of fries versus frozen bagged ones.


Sweet Corn Agave Muffins
Courtesy of Bull BBQ

1/2 cup softened Bull agave butter
2/3 cup organic fair trade cane sugar
2 tablespoons organic agave nectar
2 cage free eggs
1/2 teaspoon finely ground sea salt
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon Saigon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup vanilla coconut milk
3/4 cup canned corn kernels

Preheat grill to medium high or 400˚ F, then turn off two inner burners and leave on two outer burners to create indirect heat. Grease 12 muffin cups.

In a large bowl, cream together agave butter, sugar, agave nectar, and eggs. Mix in salt, flour, cornmeal, cinnamon, and baking powder, then blend thoroughly. Stir in coconut milk and corn. Pour or spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.

Grill on indirect heat at 400˚ F for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center of the muffins comes out clean.

Bull agave butter- Your favorite buttery spread plus a generous squeeze of Organic agave nectar, all blended together into buttery sweet deliciousness!

Tip: Take fresh ears of sweet ripe corn and dehusk and clean. Brush each ear with grapeseed oil and place on a Bull grill preheated to medium high or 450˚ F for about 3-4 minutes, turning often until heated through and there are slight char marks. Let cool so you don’t burn your fingers, then carefully cut the kernels away from the cob and use those delectable bits in place of canned corn.


Savory Squash Pie with Tart Apples and Sweet Onion
Author: Russ Faulk, Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet

1 whole large acorn squash
2 9-inch rolled frozen pie crusts, such as Pillsbury
2 cups grated manchego cheese
2 granny smith apples, cored and thinly sliced (skins left on)
1 cup sweet onion, cut into quarters and then thinly sliced
1 cup dried cranberries
3 eggs
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces
2 cups alder wood chips, soaked
Prepare the grill for indirect cooking at 350 to 375°F.

Place the whole squash in the indirect zone with the hood closed. Cook until softened, about 45 minutes, turning once. Remove from the grill and allow to cool. You may also choose to roast the squash in an oven at the same temperature without any appreciable difference in flavor. The squash may be roasted up to an hour in advance of the rest of the pie preparation.

Cut the squash in half. Remove and discard the seeds. Remove all of the flesh from the shells and discard the shells. Slice the squash about 1/4" thick.

Line a 9-inch cast iron skillet or heavy ceramic pie plate with the bottom pie crust. Trim off any excess at the skillet's edge. Proceed to fill the pie, beginning with a thin layer of manchego cheese, followed by thin layers of apples, onions, squash and dried cranberries, using about 1/3 of each for each layer. Repeat the layering two more times. The pie should be over-filled and quite tall. The filling will settle when baked.

Whisk together 2 of the eggs with the cream, sugar, salt and pepper. Pour over the pie filling. Add the pieces of butter to the top. Lay on the top pie crust. Trim off the excess and crimp the edges all around. Cut slits into the top to vent steam. Place the skillet or pie plate on a large sheet of aluminum foil. Bring the foil up to loosely wrap the edges of the pie and help prevent the perimeter of the crust from overcooking.

Place the pie in the indirect cooking zone. Add the alder wood chips for smoke (learn about smoking techniques) and bake the pie with the hood closed for 90 minutes total, turning the pie every 30 minutes for more even baking. With 20 to 30 minutes remaining, pull the foil back away from the edges. Beat the last egg and brush about half of it onto the top pie crust and continue baking for a perfectly golden presentation.

Serve warm as a side dish.

Serves 8

Thai Grilled Pizza
Courtesy of National Turkey Federation

1/4 Cup fresh lime juice with pulp
2 Tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 Tablespoons minced green onion
1 Tablespoon minced fresh cilantro
1 Tablespoon crunchy peanut butter
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 Teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
1/2 Teaspoon grated lime zest
1/4 Teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 Cloves garlic, minced
1 10-ounce tube refrigerated pizza dough
As needed olive oil
1/2 Cup sliced green onion
1 Medium carrot, cut into 2X1/8-inch match sticks
1/4 Cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 Cup grated Mozzarella cheese 

Prepare grill for indirect-heat cooking.

Combine lime juice, soy sauce, onion, cilantro, peanut butter, oil, brown sugar, gingerroot, lime zest, red pepper flakes and garlic in a large saucepan. Stir in shredded turkey. Heat over low heat, stirring occasionally.

Unroll pizza dough and pat into a rectangle, approximately 10 x 13 inches. Cut dough into 4 equal pieces.
educe grill heat to low. Brush grill rack with olive oil. Using the indirect grilling method, slide pizza crusts on grill and cook until golden, about 3 to 4 minutes until dough is puffy and lightly browned.

Turn pizza crusts over. Top browned side of pizza crusts with heated turkey mixture. Sprinkle with green onions, carrot sticks and cilantro. Sprinkle pizzas with cheese.

Cover with grill lid or tent with foil. Heat pizzas about 5 minutes or until crusts are cooked on bottom, cheese melts and pizzas are hot.

NOTE: To set up GAS grill for indirect cooking, preheat all burners on high. Turn one burner off; place pizzas over “off” burner. Reset remaining burner(s) to medium. Close lid to cook. To set up CHARCOAL grill for indirect cooking, arrange hot coals around outer edge of grill; place disposable aluminum pan in open space. Place pizzas over open area and closede lid to cook. 
Serves 4


Perfect Butter Brickle Pie- Tied for 1st Place at the 2011 American Royal
Courtesy of Hearthland Products-Memphis Wood Fire Grills

Butter Brickle

1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup white sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup quick cooking oats
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup chopped pecans
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 (12 ounce) jar caramel topping

Preheat grill to 350˚ F

In medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, 1/3 cup melted butter and white sugar until well mixed.

Press into bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.

Bake 6 minutes, until set. Cool completely.

Increase temperature on the grill to 400˚ F

In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, 1/2 cup melted butter and pecans until well mixed.

Lightly pat onto a baking sheet.

Bake 10 to 15 minutes, until light brown. Crumble while still hot. Cool completely.

In large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in condensed milk until well blended. Fold in whipped topping.

Spread half of the cheese mixture over the crust in the spring form pan. Sprinkle half of the oat crumbles over the cheese mixture, and spread half of the caramel sauce over that. Repeat layers. Freeze until firm, remove pan sides and serve cold.


Pumpkin Pie
Courtesy of Bull BBQ

1 cup organic fair trade cane sugar
1/2 cup packed organic fair trade light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon finely ground sea salt
2 teaspoons ground Saigon cinnamon
1 teaspoon fresh nutmeg
½ teaspoon freshly ground ginger
½ teaspoon cloves
2 cage free eggs
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree or ‘Bull It Yourself!’
1 1/4 cups evaporated milk
1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust

Preheat grill to medium to medium high heat or 350˚ F. Then, to obtain indirect heat, keep on the two outer burners and turn off the two inner burners.

In a large mixing bowl, stir together all dry ingredients and spices. When these ingredients are well mixed, stir in the eggs followed by the pumpkin and milk. Blend well and transfer mixture to the pie crust.

Grill on indirect heat at 350˚ F for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until a toothpick inserted into the pie comes out clean. Cool before serving.

Tip: Take a whole pie pumpkin, slice in half and clean out middle and seeds, then slice into smaller pieces and grill face down on indirect heat at 450˚ F for 60-90 minutes in a cast iron pot with the lid on, until pumpkin flesh is soft and tender and pulls from side easily. Then scrape out pumpkin flesh from shells and remove excess water, puree to smooth consistency and use in place of canned pumpkin.

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