Celebrate Thanksgiving the Texas Way | An Authentic Lone Star State Celebration (2024)

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Written By Timothy Te

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Celebrate Thanksgiving the Texas Way | An Authentic Lone Star State Celebration (1)

For many Texans, Thanksgiving is about more than just spending time with family and friends. It's also a day to give thanks for all that the Lone Star state has to offer. Texas has something for everyone, from its rich history and diverse culture to its natural beauty and abundance of outdoor activities.

And on Thanksgiving Day, many families celebrate all that makes their home unique. Some might spend the day exploring a state park or hiking through scenic Hill Country. Others might opt for a traditional Texas-style Thanksgiving feast, complete with all the fixings: turkey (What wine goes well with turkey?), sweet potatoes, green beans, and of course, pecan pie.

So what sets a Texas Thanksgiving feast apart from the rest?

Traditional Thanksgiving meals in the United States typically consist of roast turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie. However, the menu for a Texas Thanksgiving feast would be quite different. This is because most Texans have roots in countries, which is reflected in the food served on Thanksgiving Day.

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When it comes to Thanksgiving, every family has its traditions. But in Texas, a few time-honored traditions make a Southern-style Thanksgiving special. First, the fried smoked turkey boasts a unique flavor that is sure to please even the pickiest of eaters. Secondly, no Thanksgiving feast would be complete without a side of sweet potato casserole. This dish is often topped with candied pecans, making it the perfect blend of sweet and savory. And, of course, no matter what happens, the day won't go by without watching and enjoying a football game.

The diversity of the Texas Thanksgiving table is a reflection of the state's unique history and culture. So whether you're looking for a traditional meal or something a little more exotic, you can find it at a Texas Thanksgiving feast.

Fried Smoked Turkey

Texas is well-known for its unique culture and traditions, and Thanksgiving is no exception. In many parts of the state, frying smoked turkeys is a popular way to prepare a holiday meal.

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While turkey can be cooked in various ways, smoking adds a unique flavor that is perfect for the Lone Star State. The intense flavor of fried smoked turkey pairs well with the hearty sides typically served on Thanksgiving, such as stuffing, mashed potatoes, and gravy. And unlike roasted turkey, smoked turkey is always moist and juicy. As a result, many people who begin cooking turkeys this way never go back to the traditional oven-prepared method.

Frying smoked turkeys is an art form in itself, and it often takes years of practice to perfect. However, those who master this cooking method are rewarded with a delicious and juicy holiday turkey that will please even the pickiest of eaters.

This cooking method may seem strange to some, but it's an art form that produces juicy, flavorful meat that will have your guests asking for seconds. Plus, there's no need to worry about the turkey being dry or overcooked - the smoker does all the work for you.

So if you're looking for a truly unique Thanksgiving experience, head down to Texas and try the fried smoked turkey. It might just become your new favorite way to celebrate the holiday.

With more people preferring smaller Thanksgiving turkeys, Texas farms offer their best non-GMO, pastured birds. Get Your Thanksgiving Turkey from these Texan Farms. Book yours now!

We also have a Texas Fried Tukey Recipe that you can check out!

Cornbread Dressing

A traditional Thanksgiving feast in Texas would not be complete without a savory cornbread dressing. This delicious side dish is made with fresh cornbread, a variety of herbs, onions, celery, and chicken stock.

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While some cooks use store-bought chicken broth (how long does chicken broth last?), many Southern cooks prefer to make their own by stewing a chicken. This gives the broth a richer flavor and allows the cook to add in some of the diced chicken. No matter how it is prepared, cornbread dressing is sure to be a hit at any Texas Thanksgiving table.

The origins of cornbread dressing can be traced back to the enslaved people brought over from West Africa during the Transatlantic slave trade. These people transformed leftover cornbread into a delicious dish that eventually made its way to the American South.

Today, cornbread dressing is a traditional dish many people enjoy during the holiday season. Although its origins are humble, this dish has become a cherished part of American culture.

Herbert's Specialty Meats in Houston offers delicious turducken paired with cornbread dressing, making it perfect for a great Thanksgiving dinner.

Buttermilk Biscuits

For many people in the South, Thanksgiving wouldn't be complete without a plate of fresh-from-the-oven biscuits. And while there are endless variations on this classic recipe, this honey buttermilk biscuit recipe is the perfect option for your Thanksgiving feast.

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The biscuits are deliciously moist and fluffy, with just the right amount of sweetness from the honey. They're also effortless to make - even if you've never baked biscuits. Simply mix the ingredients, roll out the dough, and cut out the biscuits with a glass or cutter. Then bake in a hot oven until golden brown.

Whether you serve them as part of the main meal or enjoy them with a dollop of jam for dessert, these honey buttermilk biscuits will surely be a hit at your Thanksgiving table.

If you're searching for flaky, buttery, homestyle Southern Buttermilk Biscuits, this recipe is for you.

Green Bean Casserole

Green bean casserole is a classic dish often served at Texas Thanksgiving meals. While the traditional dish uses cream-of-something soup, the Lone Star State boasts a more flavorful version.

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Texas green bean casserole includes ingredients like serrano peppers and bacon. It's topped off with a crunchy concoction of pecans and French fried onions, making it a favorite at the table.

In Texas, peppers are available year-round but peak in late summer and early fall. Find the widest variety and the best prices of Texas hot peppers through the TexasRealFood Promptuary.

Cranberry and Pecan Tamales

Thanksgiving is a time-honored tradition in Texas, and tamales are often on the menu. Wrapped in corn husks and stuffed with various fillings, tamales are a delicious and festive way to enjoy the holiday.

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Cranberry and pecan tamales are popular for many Texas families, as they add sweetness to the traditional Thanksgiving fare. The tartness of the cranberries pairs well with the pecans' richness, creating a unique and familiar flavor.

Tamales are also relatively easy to make, which makes them a perfect addition to any Thanksgiving feast. So whether you're serving them as an appetizer or a main course, cranberry and pecan tamales will surely be a hit at your next Thanksgiving gathering.

Find farm-fresh corn for your Thanksgiving tamales at a local farmers market through the TexasRealFood Promptuary.

Sweet Potato Casserole

While mashed potatoes topped with gravy are a classic Thanksgiving dish, nothing soothes the soul quite like a sweet potato casserole in Texas. The sweet potato mixture at the heart of this recipe is whipped up on Thanksgiving Day. The resulting casserole is sweet and creamy, with a satisfying crunch thanks to its pecan and brown sugar topping.

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This dish is always a hit with Thanksgiving guests, no matter where they're from. So if you're looking for a unique twist on a classic holiday favorite, be sure to give this recipe a try. You won't be disappointed.

Sweet potatoes are very popular for Thanksgiving and holiday dinners because of their unique flavor and taste. Avoid confusion at the market and discover the similarities and differences between sweet potatoes and yams!

Texas-Style Thanksgiving Desserts

In Texas, they do Thanksgiving desserts differently. While pumpkin pie is the traditional Thanksgiving dessert in most parts of the country, it's all about pecan pie in Texas.

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This Southern favorite is usually made with a flaky pastry crust, a filling of brown sugar and corn syrup (how long does corn syrup last?), and plenty of chopped pecans. Some recipes include chocolate, bourbon, or coffee for an extra kick.

Pecan pie is traditionally served with whipped cream or ice cream, making it a rich and indulgent treat. If you're looking for something a little different this Thanksgiving, give pecan pie a try. You might find that it's your new favorite holiday tradition.

There's nothing like a home-cooked, freshly baked pie to remind you of home and family! So head on to Just Pies! at Tyler for amazing pies on your Thanksgiving spread!


Southerners love their football, and that love is often on display during the holidays. After the family meal and the dishes are cleared away, many people gather around the television to watch the day's big game.

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And while there is always plenty of good-natured joking and trash-talking amongst friends and family members, there is also great pride in supporting one's favorite team. But, of course, for many people, holiday gatherings wouldn't be complete without a bit of friendly competition - and perhaps a few bets placed on the game's outcome. So whether cheering on a local team or rooting for a favorite player, watching football on Thanksgiving has become an ingrained part of Southern culture.


Celebrating Thanksgiving the Texas Way means enjoying all the traditional fixings of the holiday, with a few Lone Star State twists thrown in. The fried smoked turkey is, of course, the star of the show. Still, it's often accompanied by dishes like cornbread dressing and Tex-Mex favorites like cranberry and pecan tamales.

Of course, no Thanksgiving feast would be complete without a healthy helping of sweet potatoes, green beans, and cranberry sauce. And for dessert? A slice of pecan pie – sometimes even topped with a scoop of ice cream.

So whether you're celebrating Thanksgiving the traditional way or putting your spin on the holiday, there's sure to be something for everyone at the table. Happy Thanksgiving!

More from TexasRealFood:

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  • 6 Best Farm-To Table Restaurants To Dine In Dallas

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  • Hosting a Texas-Inspired Thanksgiving Celebration

Timothy Te

Celebrate Thanksgiving the Texas Way | An Authentic Lone Star State Celebration (2024)


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