Thanksgiving Turkey and Side Dishes

Bourbon Smoked Citrus Pepper Brined Turkey Deep Fried and Bourbon Smoked Sugar Recipe Bourbon Barrel Foods



6 quarts hot water
5 pounds ice
1 pound kosher salt
1 pound Bourbon Smoked Sugar
¼ cup Bourbon Smoked Citrus Pepper
4 bay leaves
1 large bunch fresh thyme
2 large sprigs rosemary
1 13-14-pound turkey
4 gallons peanut or sunflower oil

Tools and Equipment:

Turkey Frying Rig – Frying pot, burner, and propane tank
Container that will hold the brine and turkey fully submerged (a 5-gallon drink cooler or stockpot)

For the Bourbon Smoked Citrus Pepper Brine:

• In a large pot, place hot water, kosher salt, Bourbon Smoked Citrus Pepper, herbs and Bourbon Smoked Sugar.
• Stir until the salt and sugar dissolve completely.
• Add the ice and stir until the mixture is cool.
• Gently lower the turkey into the container.
• If necessary, weigh down the turkey to ensure that the turkey is fully immersed in the brine.
• If using a cooler, cover and set in a cool, dry place –
If using a stockpot, refrigerate –
For 8 to 16 hours.

Deep Frying Method:

• Remove the turkey from the brine, rinse and dry thoroughly inside and out.

• Allow the turkey to sit at room temperature for at least 30-minutes prior to cooking.

• On a safe, flat-level surface, outdoors – Place the peanut or sunflower oil into a 28-30-quart pot and set over high heat on an outside propane burner.
• Bring the oil temperature to 275-degrees F. Once the temperature has reached 275, slowly lower the turkey into the oil and bring the temperature up to 350-degrees F.
• Once the temperature has reached 350-degrees F, if needed, lower the heat to maintain a temperature of 350-degrees F.
• After 35 minutes, using a probe thermometer, check the turkey’s temperature.
• Once the breast reaches 155-degrees F, gently remove the turkey from the oil.
• Allow the turkey to rest for a minimum of 30-minutes before carving.
• The turkey will reach an internal temperature of 165-degrees F due to carry-over cooking.

  • To determine the correct amount of oil, place the turkey into the pot that you will be frying it in, add water just until it barely covers the top of the turkey and is at least 4 to 5 inches below the top of the pot. This will be the amount of oil you use for frying the turkey.

Bourbon Spiced Cornbread Stuffing with Sausage and Pecans

(serves 8-10)


13×9 pan of cornbread, cut into 1” pieces
3 tablespoons olive oil
19 ounces hot or sweet Italian sausage, removed from casings
2 teaspoons Bourbon Smoked Paprika
2 onions, small dice
4 stalks celery, small dice
1 leek, white and pale green parts, chopped and rinsed
¼ cup apple cider vinegar, sherry or white wine
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus 4 tablespoons, cut into small pieces
2 eggs
2 cups chicken stock, plus more if needed
1 cup pecans, toasted and chopped – TRY Bourbon Smoked Spiced Pecans
1 fresh chili (such as fresno), deseeded and chopped fine (optional)
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
3 teaspoons Bourbon Smoked Salt
2 teaspoon Bourbon Smoked Pepper


1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spread the cornbread out on 2 rimmed baking sheets and toast for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and allow to cool. Butter a shallow 3 quart baking dish and a piece of aluminum foil. Set aside.

2) In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add sausage and smoked paprika. Cook, breaking up into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Cook until browned and no longer pink, about 7-10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and add to the cornbread.

3) Add onions, celery and leeks to the skillet. Saute’, stirring often, until onions are browned and soft, 10-12 minutes. Scrape into the cornbread mixture. Return skillet to medium-high heat and pour in the apple cider vinegar, sherry or white wine to deglaze. Scrape up any brown bits and cook until almost all the liquid has evaporated. Add the ½ cup of butter and allow to melt. Pour over cornbread mixture. Whisk eggs and 2 cups stock in a medium bowl and add to the cornbread, along with the pecans, chopped chili and thyme. Season with smoked salt and pepper. Mix well to combine. If stuffing seems dry, add more stock, ¼ cup at a time, until thoroughly moistened.

4) Pour stuffing into baking dish and dot with remaining 4 tablespoons of butter and cover tightly with foil, buttered side down. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and increase oven to 450 degrees. Bake until top is browned, about 20-25 minutes more. Serve warm.

Note: toasting cornbread and pecans and cooking sausage and vegetables can all be done a day ahead. Right before baking, toss everything together and add melted butter, eggs and stock. Proceed as directed.


1 tablespoon salt
2 pounds Potatoes – Baby Yukon Gold or Baby Reds
3 tablespoons melted butter
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
2 tablespoon fresh chives, chopped
2 tablespoons Bourbon Smoked Chef’s Blend
Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt & Bourbon Smoked Pepper, to taste
4 tablespoons Parmesan Cheese

• Preheat broiler to medium-high heat.

Prepare the Potatoes:
• In a large pot, place potatoes and salt and bring to a boil.
• Cook, covered for 30-35 minutes or until just fork-tender.
Drain well.

Smash, Season and Broil:
• On a medium-large, greased sheet pan, arrange potatoes into a single layer.
• Using a potato masher or heavy-bottomed glass, flatten the potatoes. (not too hard or they will end up mashed)
• In a bowl, mix 3-tablespoons of melted butter, Bourbon Smoked Chef’s Blend, crushed garlic and rosemary.
• Pour the mixture over each potato.
• Sprinkle with Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt and Bourbon Smoked Pepper on the top of each potato.
• Broil on the middle rack until they are golden and crispy – approximately 10-15-minuets
• Remove from oven, sprinkle Parmesan Cheese over the potatoes and return to the oven until the Parmesan cheese is melted.

Finishing touches:
• Season with a little extra salt and chives and serve immediately.


½ pound Bourbon Smoked Pepper Bacon
1 small apple – diced
2 pounds Brussels Sprouts – trimmed and cleaned
1 package Bourbon Smoked Spiced Pecans
4 tablespoons kosher salt
½ tablespoon Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

• Prepare Apples: Dice apples into small pieces about 1/8 inch – set aside

• Preheat oven to 400-degrees F.

• Prepare Bacon: On a large sheet tray, spread out Bourbon Smoked Pepper Bacon. Cook bacon in oven until crisp. • • Remove from oven and drain access bacon fat into a heat-safe bowl. Save bacon fat. Dice bacon into small pieces, about 1/8 inch – set aside.

• Turn oven up to 450-degrees F.

• Prepare Brussels Sprouts: In a large pot of boiling water, add the kosher salt and the Brussels Sprouts, cook until just tender, approximately 5-minutes.
• Remove from water, drain and dry sprouts well.
• Smash Brussels Sprouts with a heavy-bottom pot and place in a large bowl.
• Toss with Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt, oil, apples and bacon fat, then spread out without overlapping on a sheet tray.

• Bake in a 450-degree F oven until crispy, approximately 15 minutes. Garnish with bacon and pecans and serve.


For the Crispy Onion Topping:
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons plus ½ cup panko bread crumbs divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Nonstick cooking spray

For green beans and sauce:
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 pound fresh green beans, rinsed, trimmed and halved
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
12 ounces mushrooms, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon Bourbon Smoked Citrus Pepper
1 teaspoon Bourbon Smoked Chef’s Blend
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups whole milk


Prepare the Crispy Onion Toping:
• Preheat the oven to 475-degrees F.
• Combine the onions, flour, 1/2 cup panko and salt in a large mixing bowl.
• Toss to combine.
• Coat a sheet pan with nonstick cooking spray and evenly spread the onions on the pan.
• Place the pan on the middle rack of the oven.
• Toss the mixture 2 to 3 times during cooking.
• Bake until golden brown, approximately 30 minutes.
• Remove from the oven and set aside until ready to use.

• Turn the oven down to 400-degrees F.

Blanch the Green Beans:
• In an 8-quart sauce, bring 1-gallon of water and 2 tablespoons of the kosher salt to a boil.
• Add the beans and blanch for 5 minutes.
• Drain and immediately shock beans in a large bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.

*Drain and set aside.

Prepare the Casserole:

• In a 12-inch cast iron, melt 2-tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat.

• Add the 12-ounces of trimmed/cut mushrooms, 1-teaspoon kosher salt and Bourbon Smoked Citrus Pepper and cook, occasionally stirring, until the mushrooms begin to give up some of their liquid, approximately 4 to 5 minutes.

• Add the garlic and nutmeg and continue to cook for another 1 to 2 minutes.
• Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and stir to combine — Cook for 1 minute.
• Whisk in 1-cup of whole milk and simmer for 1-minute. Decrease the heat to medium-low and add the other cup of whole milk.
• Continue to cook until the mixture thickens, occasionally stirring, approximately 6 to 8-minutes.
• Remove from the heat and stir in 1/4 of the onion topping and all of the green beans.
• Spread with the remaining onions topping and the remaining 2-tablespoons of panko on the top.
• Place the cast iron in the oven and bake until bubbly, approximately 15 minutes.
• Remove and serve immediately.