With Thanksgiving only a week away, it’s time to start getting those checklists in order to ensure your feast goes off without a hitch. As the centerpiece of the meal, it’s understandable that the turkey is typically one of the biggest stressors come T-day. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Today, we present you with 12 foolproof recipes featuring a spread of seasonings and preparation methods. Each will yield a showstopping bird to share with your guests. Now get those carving knives ready — they’re about to see some action.
1. Citrus-Rubbed Turkey With Cider Gravy: Simply rub your bird with a bit of citrus-enhanced salt the night before to set you on the right track toward this succulent turkey. The real key is to baste it with a citrus-cider-butter mixture while it bakes in the oven. (via Martha Stewart)
2. Turkey Roasted With Herb Butter: The focal point of our made-in-two-hours Thanksgiving feast, this classic turkey is just as good whether it’s your first or fifteenth time hosting the holiday. (via Brit + Co)
3. Chile-Rubbed Turkey: How gorgeous is this shiny, glossy bird? Rubbed with a trifecta of chiles and a touch of cumin, the resulting turkey promises to be just as interesting the day of as it is in leftovers. (via Bon Appétit)
4. Classic Dry Brined Turkey: If a sloshing bucket of brine sounds unappealing, let us introduce you to the dry brine. Whether you include or omit the assorted seasonings, your turkey will turn out delectable every. single. time. P.S. This method also works wonders on chicken. (via Honestly Yum)
5. Smoked Turkey: If you live somewhere with a climate for year-round outdoor cooking, why not hack your charcoal grill into a smoker? It’ll free up your oven for more important things (read: pie). (via Chow)
6. Spatchcocked Turkey With Butter, Herbs, Olive Oil and Lemon: Whether you’re looking to trim down your turkey cooking time or your bird is bigger than your oven, spatchcocking (AKA butterflying) is your holiday hero. Just make sure you have a good pair of kitchen shears or a sharp knife on hand for the task. (via The Musician Who Cooks)
8. Roast Turkey With Pears + Sage: Here, pears are featured in three clever ways. They form a roasting rack on which the bird is set, add flavor to the sweet honey-wine glaze and stud a sage-scented stuffing. Sounds pretty good, right? (via Adventures in Cooking)
9. Bouchon Roast Turkey: Separating the turkey into pieces and prepping each a bit differently yields a roast that highlights every section in the best way possible. The hardest part about eating this scrumptious bird will be deciding which piece(s) to load onto your crowded plate. (via Saveur)
10. Deep Fried Turkey: The flavor payoff of a deep-fried turkey can be great, but only if you exercise extreme caution. We like you, so we’ll just encourage you to be very, very careful if you forgo the roaster in favor of the fryer. The results will be well worth it. (via Chaos in the Kitchen)
11. Asian-Rubbed Turkey: More than just dab of sriracha adds a kick to the ginger-garlic-mayo mix that coats every surface of this turkey. Also stuffed with Thai basil, lemongrass and ginger, this bird is definitely the word. (via A Spicy Perspective)
12. Soy Sauce Brined Turkey: Salty soy sauce is an excellent addition to the usual sugar, salt and spice brine here. It offers an extra level of savory flavor and makes for one tender, golden brown turkey. (via Gastronomy Blog)
What’s your favorite way to prepare your Thanksgiving turkey? Are you team brine? Share your tips and tricks with everyone below!