If you’re not going whole turkey

8 Recipes
Honey-bourbon roast chicken
(Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

This holiday season, consider alternative fowl play for Thanksgiving.


The pandemic may have put a damper on your guest list this year, but it need not dampen your spirit. While your smaller crowd may not warrant a 25- or even a 12-pound turkey, there are other ways to serve turkey. It is great in mole and it makes a terrific schnitzel.

Then again, who says Thanksgiving dinner has to be a turkey? If the holiday just wouldn’t seem right without a whole bird, perhaps try game hens, dressed for the occasion. Or maybe go for a large chicken, brined with some bourbon added to the herbs and spices, beautifully lacquered and roasted “turkey style.” These recipes will lead you to some tasty alternatives.

Omar Lezcas’ Turkey in Black Mole

Time2 hours 30 minutes
YieldsServes 6 to 8

Turkey Milanese

Time20 minutes
YieldsServes 4

Grilled Turkey With Piquillo-pine Nut Sauce

Time20 minutes
YieldsServes 4

Turkey Schnitzel

Time30 minutes
YieldsServes 4

Roasted Cornish Game Hens With Meyer Lemons

Time1 hour 10 minutes
YieldsServings: 2

Honey-bourbon Roast Chicken

Time2 hours
YieldsServes 4 to 6