How to Make the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey

Thanksgiving is less than two weeks away, which means it’s time to finalize your dinner menu. Do you know what turkey recipe you’ll be using? If not, here are turkey dinner ideas that are perfect for your Thanksgiving feast! From roasted whole turkey to air fryer turkey breast, there’s something for everyone!

Want more ideas? Check out the best side dishes and easy crockpot recipes. And if you’re not into turkey you’ll definitely want to peek a look at our vegan and vegetarian Thanksgiving recipes.

overhead shot of a roasted turkey covered with bacon

Bacon Wrapped Spatchcock Turkey with Veggies and Gravy

If you ask me, bacon makes everything better and this easy spatchcock turkey recipe is full of bold, buttery, bacon-y flavor! Roast a juicy turkey along with carrots and onions, then serve it with a hearty gravy on the side.

whole maple smoked turkey on a platter with oranges and cranberries

Epic Maple Smoked Turkey Recipe

Here’s another recipe that breaks the mold of a typical Thanksgiving turkey. A whole turkey is rubbed with a spicy maple spice blend, stuffed with citrus and then smoked with cherry wood and applewood on the grill. Crisp skin, juicy turkey meat and mind blowing flavor await with this easy recipe.

turkey tenderloin, grilled and then sliced - with brown sugar and whole grain mustard sauce, served over brown rice, on a tan pottery platter

Grilled Turkey Tenderloin with Brown Sugar and Whole Grain Mustard

This grilled turkey recipe only uses the tenderloin so it’s ideal for smaller gatherings. Flavored with brown sugar, whole grain mustard and smoked paprika, this succulent turkey is just begging to be served with mashed potatoes.

classic roast turkey with herb butter on a platter

Herb Roast Turkey

A traditional roasted whole turkey slathered in herb butter! If you’re looking for a classic Thanksgiving day centerpiece for your meal, then this whole bird flavored with thyme, sage and rosemary is the recipe you need.

Up close image of turkey breast with gravy, mashed potatoes and carrots on a white plate.

Crockpot Turkey Breast

This slow cooker turkey recipe only uses the breast meat and serves 4 to 6 people, which makes it another ideal choice for smaller Thanksgiving celebrations! The turkey meat is cooked with carrots and you can even add potatoes to the mix, so you’re basically cooking your main dish and a side with minimal effort.

Instant Pot Turkey Breast

Here’s another way to make a stress-free Thanksgiving turkey: use your Instant Pot! In only a fraction of the time required for a traditional roasted turkey you can have tender, juicy turkey bread seasoned to perfection. Sign us up!

Juicy Whole Roast Turkey

Make a juicy old fashioned Thanksgiving turkey with this classic recipe. Generous amounts of citrus, rosemary, butter and garlic give the turkey meat incredible flavor while it roasts in your oven.

Image of a Garlic Herb Butter Thanksgiving Turkey on a Plate

Easy, No Fuss Thanksgiving Turkey Recipe

This is one of the recipes we tested before Joyful Healthy Eats was added to Smackeral and take it from us: this recipe is DA BOMB. An easy Thanksgiving turkey recipe that doesn’t require any brining and uses a flavorful herb butter tucked under the turkey skin to make a succulent Thanksgiving turkey. It’s seriously good!

whole roast turkey on a white platter

Simple Roast Turkey Recipe

Another simple roasted turkey recipe that will have you cooking like a pro! Made with apples, onions and herbs, this roasted turkey recipe is a must have for Thanksgiving.

Roast Turkey

Thanksgiving Roast Turkey Breast

We’ve seen how to cook just the turkey breast in a crock pot, but how about the oven? If you don’t want to wait hours for a whole turkey to cook but still want the flavor from a roasted bird, this simple recipe is done in 90 minutes!

Sliced turkey breast and whole turkey legs on a bed of herbs.

Buttermilk Brined Turkey

Instead of brining your turkey in a traditional saltwater bath, try buttermilk! The lactic acid in buttermilk tenderizes the meat and makes for a plump and juicy Thanksgiving turkey.

A serving dish filled with sliced turkey breast, lemon slices, and herbs.

Air Fryer Turkey Breast

How’s about another Thanksgiving day hack? We’ve talked about the crockpot, we’ve talked about the Instant Pot. Now it’s time to put your air fryer to work for you! Make juicy turkey breast with the crispiest skin in an hour!

roasted sweet potatoes, carrots, and Brussels sprouts and sliced turkey roulade on a sheet pan

Sheet Pan Thanksgiving Dinner with Turkey Roulade

Why not make your Thanksgiving turkey and the veggie sides to go with it all in the same pan? This simple sheet pan dinner idea lets you make your turkey, your vegetable side AND the stuffing at the same time!

We hope you’ve enjoyed this Thanksgiving turkey round-up! If you’re looking for even more Thanksgiving recipes, be sure to check out our recipe finder to browse literally thousands of ideas.

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