roast-turkey-mainSince I’ve taken on the unenviable task of cooking our family’s Thanksgiving turkeys, I can say that over the years I’ve picked up a thing or two. I’ve discovered there’s no need to take out that grill or deep fryer to get creative! I’d love to share with you 5 inspiring ways to roast a holiday turkey that goes beyond your usual method.

When it comes to cooking a perfect bird, any experienced cook will discover that some methods work, and some fall just short of disaster.  For me, it was sticking to the idea that stuffing MUST be cooked inside the bird. This, for me, consistently resulted in great stuffing, but a dry turkey.


Now that I’d made the stuffing separately, it opened up a new frontier of creative ways to cook that little gobbler. It was time to have a little fun. It’s time for you, too! Below I’ve collected a number of ways I’ve roasted my turkeys, and a couple I haven’t tried, but looks so amazingly delicious I have to share. I’m sure you’re familiar with some of these methods, but have you actually tried them?  Let’s take a look.


Let’s start with the basic that we’re all familiar with. Roasting. But before you move on, let’s go over a few tips to simple roasting that have elevated this simple process to yield an even better turkey.

Two things that I do consistently that I hadn’t done years back is brining and cooking the bird breast side down. Click on the links to see my favorite (and very simple) brine recipe, along with an article and instruction on breast side down roasting. (One word on the breast side down method: You really don’t need to flip it back over at any time during cooking. Too much of a hassle. Sure, the turkey won’t be as picture perfect, but it sure will be delicious!)



We’ll start it off with this well written post on basic turkey roasting at Natasha’s Kitchen. Great instruction.  I would still brine it first and roast it breast side down.

Juicy Roast Turkey. This turkey has the juiciest, most flavorful turkey breast! KEEPER!! |


I haven’t tried this unique method of roasting the turkey overnight, but hop on over to Created by Diane to see the step by step process which promises juicy results!
How to roast a turkey upside down and overnight @createdbydiane


Oven bag roasting has been the way I’ve been doing my turkey for a few years now. This, combined with the brining makes for a really juicy turkey that can also be quite forgiving if you go a bit over on baking time. Have a look at Reynolds Kitchen.
moist thanksgiving turkey


Wow! Turkey baked in a paper bag? There seems to be quite a few folks who swear by this method, and I have to say it looks pretty easy too. Read more about it at


If you really want an almost fool proof way to get your turkey to cook evenly everywhere, look no farther than this process called “spatchcocked”. Serious Eats takes us through this process for roasting your turkey in the fastest way possible with outstanding results.
Crisp-Skinned Golden Brown Turkey


So, for perfect roast turkey, just take your pick! No need to pull out your grill or deep fryer to serve up a super tasty main event like these shown here. It just goes to show you how creative you can get with just an oven and a little imagination! If you’ve tried any of these method or others, I’d love to hear about them!







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