When chefs cook for the holiday, turkey isn't the only thing on the menu. Here, their delicious Thanksgiving alternatives.

By Food & Wine
Updated March 31, 2015

Thanksgiving Tamales

Border Grill; Los Angeles & Las Vegas

Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger's L.A. flagship sells turkey tamales and cranberry salsa (right); their Vegas outpost has venison enchiladas. The tamales are available for takeout through Christmas.



Watch Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger cook their nontraditional Thanksgiving tamales with cranberry salsa.

Texas-Style Holiday

Smoke; Dallas

On Thanksgiving, in addition to turkey and house-smoked ham, chef Tim Byres serves a beef rib roast that's been slow-cooked in a pit.

© iStock

A Chef Gives Back

Reef; Houston

The staff of Bryan Caswell's restaurant get the holiday off, but the chef always cooks a huge Thanksgiving spread for two local firehouses. The firemen's favorites: white bean stew and turkey breast roulade.

© Frances Janisch

Thanksgiving Preview

The Majestic; Alexandria, VA

The Sunday before the holiday, guests can order a family-style dinner of turkey breast roulade, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie. The Majestic offers a family dinner every Sunday night

© iStock

Pork vs. Turkey

Sugarcane; Miami

Chef Timon Balloo serves a juicy porchetta roulade on Thanksgiving. "I don't want to knock the bird, but it can be hit or miss," he says. To satisfy traditionalists, chef Balloo also serves a roast turkey.

Amazing Thanksgiving Recipes:

Thanksgiving Alternatives to Turkey

Star Chef Thanksgiving Menus

Thanksgiving Menu Planning Tips

Advertisement