Thanksgiving is next month! Are you ready to create a feast? When it comes to Thanksgiving, the turkey reigns supreme. It’s a classic. But, it’s about more than just the perfect turkey. You can’t forget about the turkey stuffing! Or, about the sides. It all comes together to make the meal. Plus, we have some ideas for what to do with your leftover turkey as well.
So, without further ado, let’s get to it.
First things first: How do you make turkey stuffing?
When it comes to turkey stuffing, you have two options.
- You can put your turkey stuffing right inside. This is the most classic way. With this, your turkey stuffing will absorb the juices as it cooks. This is probably the way your grandmother would have made it.
- Or, you can cook it on the side. Just prepare as you normally would. Then, put it in a seperate pan. With this, you will get a crispier stuffing. It’s also known as “dressing.”
In our opinion, both methods are delicious. So, it’s up to you. But, for the sake of it, we have a few pointers for you. And, of course, a few recipes. There are so many options to choose from.
So, you’ve chosen the classic method. But, keep in mind; this slows down the cooking slightly. This is because you must allow the turkey stuffing to come to 165°. But there are a few other things you should know about stuffing your turkey. Firstly, you should cook all ingredients before combining, especially if you’re adding any meat. But, this also goes for veggies too. So, do not use raw ingredients. Secondly, you should only stuff your turkey right before cooking. As a rule, use 1/2 cup of turkey stuffing per lb of turkey—place in the neck and the cavity. But, don’t overpack! It is the hope that your turkey and turkey stuffing will finish at the same time. However, if it doesn’t, don’t fret. Remove the stuffing and finish cooking separately. It’s as easy as that.
This method is becoming more popular. It’s simple and delicious. Not to mention it can be made ahead of time. Because you don’t need the turkey, you can make dressing the night before. Then, whip it up, and pop it in the oven. You get crispy on the top and chewy in the middle—the perfect balance by cooking the turkey stuffing separately. To reheat, cover your stuffing and bake for 30 minutes at 350°. For the last 10 minutes, take off the foil. This will help to crisp up the top again.
Try out one of these delicious turkey stuffing recipes next month:
Simple Vegan Stuffing (Cook on the side)
And, for those of you who want to skip this step altogether, we have something for you! In our store, we have Oven Ready Turkeys. They are seasoned and stuffed. So all you have to do is pop it in the oven on Thanksgiving Day.
Cooking Turkey In The Oven (With, or Without Turkey Stuffing)
For this blog, we are going to stick to cooking turkey in the oven. While there are other options, this is the way we most often choose. It’s a tried and true method. So, once you’ve dealt with the turkey stuffing, it’s time to get cooking the turkey itself.
When cooking turkey in the oven, the most asked questions are:
- What is the best temperature for cooking turkey in the oven?
- And, how long?
Our suggestion is 350°. At this temperature, the turkey will cook slowly and stay moist. With higher temps, you risk drying out your meat. With lower temps, you risk cooking at an unsafe temperature for too long. So 350° is a happy medium for cooking turkey in the oven.
In terms of cooking time, allow 13 minutes per lb. Plus 15 minutes of resting time. Above all, the turkey must come to a minimum temperature of 165°.
If you are looking for more ways to cook your turkey, check out our blog How to Cook a Turkey.
Thanksgiving Side Dishes
Moving on, let’s talk about side dishes. Depending on what you like, there are lots of options. Some people like to stick to the classics. While others like to try out something new.
We all love a good mashed potato. But this year, why not try something a bit different. This Cauliflower & Parsnip Mash is sure to please. Plus, it’s vegan. Or, if you’re a fan of sweet potatoes, try one of these Stuffed Sweet Potatoes. Both will have your guests asking for more.
When we think of Thanksgiving sides, it’s often heavy and filling. But this year, why not add a salad or two to the mix? Keep it simple by using a mix of spring greens and your favorite toppings. For an easy recipe, check out this Green Salad with Apples and Cranberries. Or, for something new, try this Grilled Corn Salad. It’s full of fall flavors!
Ideas for Leftover Turkey
Once Thanksgiving has come and gone, what do you do with your turkey? Some people send it home with others. But, if you find yourself needing some ideas for leftover turkey, we’ve got you. Whip up one of these delicious recipes.
This Thanksgiving Ring is one of a kind. Plus, it’s simple as can be. Using store-bought crescent rolls and a bit of love, you’ll have one delicious snack. All the makings of a Thanksgiving dinner wrapped into one.
If you’re looking to get away from those Thanksgiving flavors, these Turkey Enchiladas will do the trick. Full of flavor, and you won’t be reminded of the meal the day before. You can also freeze them to eat another day. Cover with plastic wrap, then foil and pop in the freezer. They will keep for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to eat, place it in the oven for 30 minutes. Just remember to remove the plastic wrap!
When it comes to ideas for leftover turkey, you can use it in any recipe that calls for chicken. Try it in tacos, wraps, salads, or a hearty soup. You can even make your own broth with the bones.
Thanksgiving is only a month away. If you’re looking to avoid the last-minute rush, order your turkey today! We are now taking orders for Thanksgiving Turkeys. When you pre-order, you choose the date you’d like to pick it up. Give us a call, visit us at the farm store, or click the link below to place your order.