Thanksgiving Part Deux: Trash can turkey edition!

Off-Road Bedding Thanksgiving

I’m sorry… Did you say TRASH CAN turkey? 

Why YES! Yes I did. Hear me out on this one....

Thanksgiving is and always will be my husband's “Superbowl” of all the holidays. He researches, plans and creates the perfect turkey recipe during the months leading up to Thanksgiving. His goal is to always top the previous year's recipe. And he always does. ALWAYS! 

A few years ago he got a bee in his bonnet to have a second Thanksgiving during our camping trip the weekend after the big day. Once he convinced me on that seemingly crazy plan, we knew it had to be amazing and of course EASY!

Enter the trash can turkey. 

You might not believe me when I tell you just how easy this process really is. With minimal supplies, in no time you’ll be enjoying one of the most tender and juicy turkeys ever! Serve this up with some of the leftover sides you will surely have and dig in! 


  • 31 gallon brand new aluminum trash can 
  • (1) 1 x 1 stick of lumber cut down to 3 feet
  • (1) beer can with the top cut off
  • Aluminium foil
  • (1) 18lb bag of charcoal briquets
  • (2) 8 x 3 ¾ foil loaf pans filled with water
  • (1) 16-18lb turkey, seasoned and/or injected to your liking.
  • We usually brine our turkey, but it is not at all necessary for amazing results. 


Use the lid of your brand new trash can to heat the charcoal briquets.

While your charcoal is heating up, drive your 1 x1 piece of lumber about 1 foot into the ground, wrap the lumber in aluminum foil and place the cut beer can on top of the lumber. 

Cover the ground with plenty of aluminum foil so that the turkey will not come into contact with the ground. Place the loaf pans full of water on either side of the lumber (this will create the steam you’ll need).

Once your charcoal is white-hot, lay your turkey to rest on its beer can bed, and tie up its legs just like you would if you were baking it. Then send your turkey off to its eternal nap with all the well wishes and place the overturned trash can on top of the turkey. Make sure your turkey has plenty of room, You don't want the turkey to touch the can, otherwise it will just burn. Place half of the briquets on top of the trash can, and spread the other half on the ground around the perimeter of the trash can, making sure they touch the trash can. Cook the turkey for 3-4 hours WITHOUT looking. If you peek and disrupt the heat, you will have to finish the turkey in the oven or on the grill, and I’ve never met an RV or trailer oven that can accommodate a turkey. 

And that my friends is the hardest part of trash can turkey! NO PEEKING! 

And after you have eaten and you are in your tryptophan induced coma, lay your head to rest on your Off-Road bedding rv mattress and have sweet dreams of the most amazing turkey ever! 

Trust the process, trust me! You will never want to cook a turkey any other way!  

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