Charleston Thanksgiving Recipes

Dated: November 1 2021

Views: 136

Thanksgiving is the best time of year to gather with friends and family and give thanks for all of the great things in life! People in the South take Thanksgiving meals seriously, and there are some great food items that are unique to the Lowcountry that can add somethings different to your traditional Thanksgiving meal! Read on for some great Charleston style Thanksgiving recipes to get some inspiration for your meal this year! 

Charleston Red Rice

Charleston Red Rice is a Charleston classic, and you can even make it spicy add some extra flavor to your Thanksgiving! 


  • 2 cups uncooked long-grain white rice

  • 6 cups boiling water

  • 1 tablespoon salt

  • 6 slices bacon

  • 2 onions, chopped

  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce

  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste

  • 1 tablespoon white sugar

  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 dash hot pepper sauce

Directions: Bring the rice, water, and salt to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, 20 to 25 minutes. While the rice is cooking, cook the bacon in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Reserve about 1 tablespoon of bacon drippings in the pan. Reduce heat to medium. Drain the bacon on a plate lined with paper towels; crumble the bacon once cooled enough to handle. Cook and stir the onions in the reserved bacon drippings until translucent, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the crumbled bacon, tomato sauce, tomato paste, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and hot sauce; bring the mixture to a simmer, reduce heat, and simmer for 10 minutes. Spoon the cooked rice into the prepared baking dish and stir the tomato-bacon mixture into the rice until evenly combined. Cover the dish and bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes.

BBQ Turkey

Turkey is a Thanksgiving staple, but look to the South and all around Charleston and you will find that there are ways to get creative with this simple dish! 


  • 2 cups butter, divided

  • 1 (15 pound) whole turkey, neck and giblets removed

  • ΒΌ cup chicken soup base

  • 3 sweet onions, peeled and cut into wedges

  • 5 apples, cored and cut into wedges

  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic, or to taste

  • 1 (750 milliliter) bottle dry white wine


Preheat a gas grill for low heat. Rub some of the butter all over the turkey, inside and out, then rub all over with chicken base. Cut remaining butter into cubes and toss with onions, apples, and garlic in a large bowl. Stuff the bird with this mixture and place in a disposable aluminum roasting pan. Fold the turkey skin around the neck area to cover the hole and then turn the turkey over and pour wine into the opening at the other end until the turkey is full or the bottle is empty. Set the turkey breast side up. Place the roasting pan on the grill and cover loosely with aluminum foil. If you have a pop up timer or heat safe meat thermometer, insert it into the turkey breast. Close the lid. Roast until the temperature in the breast reads 170 degrees F (75 degrees C) and the temperature in the thickest part of the thigh reads 180 degrees C (80 degrees C), about 4 hours depending on the temperature of your grill. When the temperature is getting close, remove the aluminum foil covering the turkey and allow it to brown during the final minutes of cooking. If it starts to brown too much, just cover it back up. Allow the turkey to rest for at least 20 minutes before carving.

We hope you enjoy these Charleston-style Thanksgiving recipes! 

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Dan Lorentz

About Dan Lorentz, ABR, CRS, Founder & Team Leader of Greater Charleston Properties: Founder and Team Leader of the Greater Charleston Properties Team, Dan Lorentz, has lived in the Charleston, SC ....

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