Cook Thanksgiving Turkey Over a Campfire? You Can.

"MeatEater" host Steven Rinella shows you the way to make the day more wild.

Getty Images/EyeEm

Thanksgiving is in the air. And so is that intoxicating aroma of roasted turkey. Everybody’s got their own special recipe for the perfect bird.

For Steven Rinella, who hosts the podcast and Netflix show MeatEater, that means going a little bit wild. He ditches the oven or deep fryer for a campfire, Outside reports.

An avid outdoorsman, Rinella, whose new book The MeatEater Fish and Game Cookbook: Recipes and Techniques for Every Hunter and Angler is out November 20, tells Outside that he’s “cooked a boatload of turkeys” using that elemental method.

Just not on Thanksgiving. He only hunts – and eats – wild turkeys in the spring. “The first Thanksgiving was described as an impromptu affair,” said the Montana-based Rinella. “They would have eaten whatever they had on hand.”

And that doesn’t include a frozen Butterball from the supermarket.

Rinella’s top tip for campfire turkey is to forget about cooking it intact. “I would compare that to flying a helicopter,” he told the publication, adding that there are options for prepping a bird for cooking in the great outdoors. Grill-friendly butchering so that it lies flat is one way. Or you can cut the bird into pieces.

Norman Rockwell picture-perfect? No. Delicious? Yes.

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