Not a Fan of Turkey? Here Are 10 Delicious Alternatives for Thanksgiving.

Not a Fan of Turkey? Here Are 10 Delicious Alternatives for Thanksgiving.

Kelli Foster
Nov 18, 2016

Turkey is traditionally front and center on the Thanksgiving spread, but this whole roasted bird isn't the only way to serve up an impressive holiday dinner. If you're not really that into cooking a whole turkey, go ahead and give it a pass. Here are 10 Thanksgiving-worthy mains guaranteed to still make your meal memorable.

1. Savory Stuffed Pumpkin with Sausage and Gruyère

This is the impressive seasonal dish that plays both main course and centerpiece on your table. Inspired by Dorie Greenspan's "pumpkin stuffed with everything good," this rustic holiday showstopper combines crusty bread with Italian sausage, Gruyère, greens, and plenty of herbs.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

2. Thanksgiving-Inspired Lasagna

With a double dose of roasted squash (butternut and pumpkin), fall-friendly aromatics like sage and nutmeg, and a luxurious crème fraîche and pumpkin sauce, this veggie-friendly layered pasta dish is definitely worthy of a place on your Thanksgiving table.

(Image credit: Rachel Joy Baransi)

3. Honey-Glazed Ham

If you're game to change up the traditional turkey, but still want to bring a big cut of meat to the table, look no further than a honey-glazed ham. This meaty main is made in the slow cooker and is great for feeding a crowd.

(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

4. Beef Bourguignon

This deeply flavorful French dish made popular by Julia Child is way more than just another beef stew. Cooked low and slow, the cubes of beef, vegetables, and red wine work together to build layer upon layer of flavor. It's the kind of meal that feels like it was made for holidays and special occasions, and it comes together quite easily with the help of your slow cooker.

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

5. Root Vegetable Pot Pie

Vegetarian or not, this recipe instantly turns Thanksgiving into an ultra-cozy, rustic affair. Caramelized onions, shallots, and garlic, plus plenty of fresh herbs and a rich, wine-infused sauce join forces to really make root vegetables feel luxurious and hearty.

(Image credit: Melissa Ryan)

6. Braised Beef with Semolina Dumplings

This is the kind of stew that is a labor of love, but delivers the most handsome of rewards to the table and proves elegant enough for any dinner party. Both the beef and the dumplings can be prepared in advance and finished off the day of your meal.

(Image credit: Quentin Bacon)

7. Honey-Glazed Pork Tenderloin

This recipe instantly became my go-to for pork tenderloin and I've made it enough times in the past year that I'm confident I could now prepare it in my sleep. It comes together quickly and easily, yet the vinegar-spiked honey glaze leaves it feeling refined and elegant — like you put in a whole lot of effort into the whole affair.

(Image credit: Brie Passano)

8. Gorgonzola-Stuffed Steak Roll-Ups

Consider this recipe the fast and fancy way to upgrade an everyday flank steak. Treat yourself (it's the holidays, after all!) and opt for a nice wedge of Gorgonzola Dolce, an Italian blue cheese that's mild and sweet.

(Image credit: Quentin Bacon)

9. How To Make Classic Spanakopita

If indulgent and impressive are the requirements for your meal, spanakopita does not disappoint. This hearty Greek pie filled with spinach, feta, and fresh herbs, all wrapped up in flaky filo dough, is the vegetarian entrée worthy of the holiday table.

(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

10. How To Roast a Leg of Lamb: The Simplest, Easiest Method

Roast leg of lamb is a springtime classic, but that's no reason to discount it come Thanksgiving. If you're after a meaty main and want to go beyond the bird, this is an easy cut to cook and makes for a wonderful holiday feast.

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