How to Make Your Entire Thanksgiving Dinner on the Grill

Even if it's chilly outside, this twist on Thanksgiving is totally worth a few hours manning the coals. (We even grill the pie!)

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Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

Photo By: Matt Armendariz

The Turkey Day Grilling Game Plan

No matter what you're serving, cooking a Thanksgiving feast takes strategy and planning. Making it on the grill is a brilliant way to impart additional flavor — bet you didn't know your holiday table needed smoky Brussels sprouts and bacon still sizzling off the grates — but a grilled feast can also make prep easier. Marshmallow-crowned sweet potatoes get a s'mores-worthy toasting from the live fire; stuffing becomes rich and moist as it absorbs the dripping juices of the turkey rotating above it.

Here's the complete menu: Grilled Rotisserie Turkey with Stuffing, Grilled Brussels Sprouts, Grilled Stuffed Sweet Potatoes, and (really!) Grilled Pumpkin Pie. Click over to the recipes to get the full instructions, but use this guide as the timeline to get everything on the table at once, perfectly grilled.

Start With the Turkey ...

Time: 2 Hours and 30 Minutes Before Dinner

Action plan: Popping the turkey on a spinning rotisserie grill attachment is a win for a few reasons: The spinning is basically built-in basting, which results in a juicy bird with a welcome bit of smokiness. And it allows you to position the bird above your stuffing, so any drippings pull double duty as they land (We'll get there in a minute.).

We rub this turkey in a mixture of salt, pepper, sugar and paprika, and position it on the rotisserie over a sheet pan or disposable aluminum pan (You should choose based on your rotisserie's clearance over the grill — your grill might also allow you to remove a grate to place the pan under the bird).

To start, cook the turkey with the grill's lid on for 20 minutes, which will kick-start the browning, then you'll lift the lid to drizzle it with some butter, then close it again for 40 more minutes before adding the stuffing mixture underneath.

Get the Recipe: Grilled Rotisserie Turkey with Stuffing

... And Also the Sweet Potatoes

Time: 2 Hours and 30 Minutes Before Dinner

Action Plan: When you start your turkey, you should also start your sweet potatoes. Nestle them in on the side of the grill, next to the turkey, over medium-high heat. They need to roast for about an hour, until they're cooked through, but still holding their shape. Start mixing the stuffing ingredients while the sweet potatoes cook — it won't take long, so don't feel like you have to rush. Then remove the sweet poatoes and let them cool a bit (until their next step), and turn your attention to cooking the stuffing.

Get the Recipe: Grilled Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Spoon in the Stuffing

Time: 1 Hour and 30 Minutes to Dinner

Action Plan: At this point, your turkey still has about an hour to go, which is just how long our grilled stuffing needs, too. Take your prepped stuffing mixture and carefully spoon it into the pan under the turkey. Cover the grill and let everything keep cooking for about 60 to 75 minutes — until a thermometer inserted into the turkey's thigh reads 165 degrees F. You might need to pull the stuffing sooner — check periodically to be sure it doesn't get too brown on the bottom.

During this last hour, you can keep prepping the stuffed sweet potatoes and start prepping the Brussels sprouts — see the next slide.

When everything is ready to come off the grill, leave the turkey to rest for 30 minutes, and keep your stuffing warm inside, in a low-temp oven if necessary.

Grab Grill Pans for the Veggie Sides

Time: 30 Minutes to Dinner

Action Plan: While the turkey and stuffing are cooking, get started on the sweet potatoes and the Brussels sprouts: Scoop the flesh of the sweet potatoes and mix with butter, cream, sugar, vanilla and salt, and refill the skins with the mashed mixture. Toss the Brussels sprouts with butter, salt and pepper.

Each side goes into its own grill basket. Place two marshmallows atop each sweet potato, but don't put the basket's cover on. Lay strips of bacon into the basket where the Brussels sprouts will cook, then spoon the sprouts over the bacon and do put basket's cover on.

Get the Recipe: Grilled Brussels Sprouts

Get the Sprouts on the Grill

Time: 30 Minutes to Dinner

Action Plan: The Brussels sprouts cook for about 20 minutes (you'll cook them 15 minutes or so sprouts-side down over indirect heat, and then flip the basket to bacon-side-down over direct heat for a few minutes more so the bacon can crisp).

For the final presentation, crumble the bacon over the Brussels sprouts and sprinkle with lemon zest, Parm and red pepper flakes.

The Sweet Potatoes Take a Little Less Time

Time: 15 Minutes to Dinner

Action Plan: The sweet poatoes only need about 10 minutes on the grill to heat through and allow the marshmallows to toast (Keep an eye on them!). So you can place them on the grill a few minutes after the Brussels sprouts.

Plate It All Up!

Time: Dinnertime!

Action Plan: Let the sweet potatoes cool for a few minutes and then place them on a platter. Your Brussels sprouts should be in a serving bowl by this point, too.

Don't Forget the Stuffing

Time: Dinnertime!

Action Plan: If your stuffing is keeping warm in your oven, grab it now and scoop it into a serving bowl. Now you're ready to carve the turkey (which should also be done resting by now) and eat!

But First, Get Dessert on the Grill (Yes!)

Time: Dinnertime!

Action Plan: While you eat dinner, it's time to cook dessert! Our grilled pie calls for a pre-made pie shell in a disposable metal plate, and only a few other ingredients (all deliciously straight-forward and classic). Mix everything up when you have a free moment during dinner prep and pop it in the fridge until you're ready to sit down for dinner. The pie cooks for nearly an hour.

Get the Recipe: Grilled Pumpkin Pie

Serve Dessert

Time: Dessert time!

Action Plan: The pie needs about an hour to cool — just long enough for everyone digest dinner and be ready for some sweets. Serve this final dish to what we're sure will be a round of applause — you did it! An entire Thanksgiving, all on the grill.