7 Unconventional Thanksgiving Dishes and Plain Ol’ Handy Leftover Ideas

Last modified on July 11th, 2015 at 9:20 am

Assorted Nugget Platter with Drumstick Accents (Photo & Recipe Credit: BuzzFeed Life)

Thanksgiving is all about tradition. Fortunately, a brave few have broken free from Green Bean Casserole and canned cranberry to bring you these unconventional Thanksgiving dinner items. When you’re ready to get the purists in the family whispering to each other about how you’ve lost your mind, consider bringing one of these dishes…

Turkey Tacos

Taco Asylum, Costa Mesa
Turkey Taco by Taco Asylum (Photo credit: Taco Asylum)

Turkey Taco by Taco Asylum (Photo credit: Taco Asylum)

Filled with turkey, cornbread chorizo stuffing, turkey gravy, spicy cranberry chutney, and sweet potato fries. Who says you actually have to separate all of the dishes? You should have no trouble pulling these off at home. Opt for a local variety of tortilla.

Thanksgiving Sushi

The Vulgar Chef, Food Blog
Thanksgiving Sushi (Photo & Recipe Credit: The Vulgar Chef)

Thanksgiving Sushi (Photo & Recipe Credit: The Vulgar Chef)

Originally intended as away to use up leftovers, The Vulgar Chef states, “If your grubby Grandfather didn’t pick off every little slice of crispy delicious skin like a fucking dick you’ll be able to pull this off.”

It’s turkey skin for nori and stuffing in place of white rice, filled with turkey meat and cranberry slivers. Drizzled with a 50/50 mixture of wasabi and “buttery as all fuck mashed potato” and brown gravy. Pardon the language, but it did come from The Vulgar Chef (who makes Thug Kitchen sound like children in a church choir).

Thanksgiving Pizza

Chris Rochelle, The Chow Blog
Thanksgiving Pizza (Photo & Recipe Credit: Chris Rochelle, The Chow Blog)

Thanksgiving Pizza (Photo & Recipe Credit: Chris Rochelle, The Chow Blog)

This pizza starts out as any ordinary pizza does – with a standard crust – although, other than the cheese, that’s where similarities end. Sub gravy for tomato sauce and add turkey, cranberry, sausage stuffing, and the cheese.

Lanui (Holiday) Burger

Pono Burger
Lanui (Holiday) Burger (Photo & creation credit: Pono Burger)

Lanui (Holiday) Burger (Photo & creation credit: Pono Burger)

This creation from Santa Monica, California burger joint is a ground turkey patty, house made cranberry relish, fresh mashed potatoes, beef gravy, and fried sweet potato strings. Nice work, Chef Makani!

Seitan Roast Stuffed With Shitakes and Leeks

Isa Chandra, Post Punk Kitchen
Seitan Roast Stuffed With Shiitakes And Leeks (Photo & Recipe Credit: Isa Chandra)

Seitan Roast Stuffed With Shiitakes And Leeks (Photo & Recipe Credit: Isa Chandra)

Here’s a labor intensive way to slightly annoy your meat-eating relatives, although chances are, if you can get them to try it, they’d love it. The recipe is lengthy so we won’t repost, but if you’re interested in a delicious vegan dish, check it out on the Post Punk Kitchen site.

Thanksgiving Tamales

Tucson Tamale Company
Thanksgiving Tamales from Tucson Tamale

Thanksgiving Tamales from Tucson Tamale

Luckily, we have a local option! Thanksgiving tamales from Tucson Tamale Company. These babies are fresh sage organic masa wraps stuffed with oven-roasted turkey, fresh cranberries, carrots, celery and onion and available from (maybe – they may have sold out) from Tucson Tamale Company.

Assorted Fast Food Nugget Platter With Drumstick Accents

BuzzFeed Life
Assorted Nugget Platter with Drumstick Accents (Photo & Recipe Credit: BuzzFeed Life)

Assorted Nugget Platter with Drumstick Accents (Photo & Recipe Credit: BuzzFeed Life)

Hopefully, you don’t take everything we post too seriously. If you do, this one’s definitely for you. Dreamed up and created by the folks over at BuzzFeed Life and including 3 orders of 20-piece McDonald’s Nuggets, 3 orders of Arby’s Chicken Selects, and 2 KFC drumsticks, the rest we’ll leave up to you.

Adam Lehrman started Tucson Foodie in late 2008 as a way to track his search for the best food Tucson had to offer.