kaszeta, Flickr

Tired of the traditional Thanksgiving holiday meal? We found some recipes that are non-traditional, quick & easy and the plain not boring. We've got a few twists on the old stuffed bird that are both tasty and can be thrown together in a fraction of the time. We have alternative Thanksgiving Dinners for you to enjoy!


Mark Dadswell, Getty Images

Thanksgiving Meatloaf

A little too pressed for time to make the turkey with all it's bells and whistles this year? Try this: A turkey meatloaf, with the flavors and holiday evoking smells of your traditional turkey dinner, in less than half the time!

Ingredients: 1lb Ground turkey

1 whole apple

1whole onion

1 clove garlic

2 slices of bread (stale or heels, doesn't matter)

.5 TBspn Nutmeg

1 tspn all spice

2 tspn cinnamon

Palm full of salt


1 egg

Dice and saute in butter: onion, apple and garlic, then add your spices. During this time wet (with warm water) and mush some sliced bread (this will be used to counteract any dryness from the turkey). Add your ground turkey to your now moistened bread, then knead in your saute mix. Place into a loaf pan and toss it in your oven @ 350 for around an hour.

Thomas Firak Photography, Getty Images

Chicken Casserole

Chicken Casserole


3 large chicken breast halves

2 regular size cans of Campbell's Cream of Chicken Soup

1 Box Stove Top Stuffing Mix

1 1/2 empty soup cans of Hot Water

1 3/4 Cups Chicken Broth from boiling the chicken

How to: Boil the chicken breasts until meat is tender and remove from cooking pot, leave the broth (you'll need it shortly). Preheat your oven to 350. De-bone chicken into bite sized pieces. Place your de-boned chicken into the bottom of a 9 X 12 glass baking dish. Empty 2 cans of condensed cream of chicken soup into a blender. Use one of the empty soup cans to add 1 1/2 cans of water to the blender. Blend the soup until it's free of lumps and well mixed. Pour mixture over the chicken in the baking dish. Put the Stove Top Stuffing Mix in a mixing bowl and add 1 3/4 cup of the chicken broth from the pot that you boiled the chicken in. Mix well with a fork. Spoon out over the top of the casserole. Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes, or until topping begins to brown a bit.

Lauri Patterson, Flickr

Stuffed Peppers With Turkey

Stuffed Peppers with Turkey

(serves 1-2)

2 large green peppers

1 tablespoon oil

1/2 onion diced

1/4 red pepper, diced

Salt and pepper

1 cup shredded cooked turkey

2 cups marinara sauce

2 cups baby spinach

1 cup cooked rice

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Gently cut the tops off the peppers and scoop out the core and ribs. Trim the inside of the top and wash out the peppers. Steam for 7 minutes or until just getting tender. Oil a baking dish and preheat oven to 350F. In a skillet heat oil to medium low and add onion and red pepper, sweat for 5 minutes or until soft. Add turkey, marinara and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a gently simmer to heat through, add spinach and stir until just wilted. Remove from heat and fold in half of the cheese and the rice. Add the mixture to the pepper bottoms and place in the baking dish. Top with remaining cheese and the pepper tops. Bake for 30 minutes and serve

Steve Cohen, Getty Images

Primavera Turkey Burgers

Primavera Turkey Burgers (makes 4 small or 6 large burgers) 1.5lbs ground turkey (I used half breast and half thigh meat)

1t salt lots of pepper

2T grated carrots

2 scallions, minced

1/4C cooked, chopped spinach

cooking spray

Combine the ingredients, let chill and then slap 'em on the grill. Ps- Try serving with sweet potato fries, yum!

Amy Wisniewski, Chow.com

Thanksgiving Turkey Cake


Turkey layers:

Unsalted butter, for coating the pans

2 pounds ground turkey breast

1 cup quick-cooking oats

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated on the small holes of a box grater

1/3 cup ketchup

1/3 cup finely chopped yellow onion

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme leaves

1 teaspoon minced fresh sage leaves

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 medium garlic cloves, minced

Sweet potato layer:

1 pound sweet potatoes

1/4 cup whole milk

2 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/4 stick)

1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed

Pinch ground mace or nutmeg

Freshly ground black pepper

Some assembly required:

About 5 cups or 1 recipe Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes warm

1/2 cup cranberry sauce, such as our Cranberry and Citrus Sauce, chilled,

excess liquid drained

2 1/2 cups Sausage Stuffing, warm

1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

Gravy, for serving (optional)


Turkey layers:

Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle.

Coat 2 (8-inch) cake pans with butter; set aside.

Place all of the remaining ingredients in a large bowl and mix, using clean hands, until combined (don’t squeeze or overwork). Divide the mixture evenly between the pans, spreading it to the edges and smoothing out the top. Bake until cooked through and the cakes begin to pull away from the edges of the pans, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven (but leave the oven on) and let cool for about 10 minutes. Using a paper towel, blot away any excess fat from the cake layers’ surface; set aside. (While the turkey cakes are cooking, make the sweet potatoes.)

Sweet potato layer:

Place a steamer basket in a large saucepan with a tightfitting lid. Add enough water to reach just below the basket; bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and gently simmer.

Meanwhile, peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into 1-inch cubes. Once the water is simmering, place the cubes in the steamer basket, cover, and steam until the potatoes just give when pierced with a fork, about 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the steamer basket with the potatoes to a plate; set aside.

Discard the water in the saucepan. Place the milk and butter in the saucepan and heat over low heat until the butter has melted. Turn off the heat, add the reserved sweet potatoes and the brown sugar, measured salt, and mace or nutmeg, and mash with a potato masher until smooth. Taste and season with salt and pepper as desired; keep warm.

Some assembly required: Arrange a rack in the lower third of the oven.

Run a knife around the edge of the turkey cakes. Unmold one of the turkey layers and place it bottom-side up on an overturned 8-inch cake pan or in an ovenproof serving dish.

With a long knife or offset spatula, evenly spread 1 1/4 cups of the mashed potatoes over the top of the cake, leaving a 1/2 -inch border (keep the remaining potatoes warm).

Using the back of a clean spoon, spread the cranberry sauce evenly over the mashed potatoes.

Using your hands, gently pack the stuffing in an even layer over the cranberry sauce, using one hand to keep any stuffing from falling off the side. Press gently on the stuffing to make sure it adheres to the mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce.

Evenly spread another 1 1/4 cups of the mashed potatoes over the stuffing (keep the remaining potatoes warm).

Unmold the second turkey layer and place it bottom-side up on top of the mashed potatoes.

Transfer the cake pan or serving dish with the partially assembled cake to a baking sheet and bake until heated through, about 30 to 40 minutes (an instant-read thermometer should register 165°F).

Remove from the oven and set aside. Heat the oven to broil.

With a long knife or offset spatula, evenly coat the outside (but not top) of the entire cake with the remaining mashed potatoes (you may have a little left over).

With a clean long knife or offset spatula, evenly spread all of the sweet potatoes on top of the cake. Arrange the marshmallows across the top and gently press them into the sweet potatoes.

Return the baking sheet with the assembled cake to the oven and broil until the marshmallows are golden, about 1 to 2 minutes (watch closely so the marshmallows don’t burn). Using two flat spatulas, carefully transfer the cake to a serving dish. Serve immediately with gravy, if desired.