Edmonton restaurants with Thanksgiving dinner alternatives

Thanksgiving is a lovely holiday, but it can be trying for those who don’t know how to cook or (gasp!) dislike traditional turkey. Ditch the bird (and the clean-up) by trying out these amazing restaurants for Thanksgiving 2016. They’re all open Sunday evenings, and they all can provide a less standard (but still delicious) holiday meal. [Image credit: iStock.com/Lisovskaya]

Meat Barbecue Ltd

8216 104 St Nw, Edmonton, AB T6E 4E6

If you’re not into turkey or cooking big meals but you still want to chow down on a massive feast, head to Meat. Their menu is every carnivore’s dream come true – beef brisket, pulled pork, barbecue ribs, smoked or fried chicken and Andouille sausage are all available in different portion sizes. They also offer communal seating, so you can bring the whole family or your massive group of friends and actually fit at the same table (no banishing anyone to the kids’ table this year!). Don’t forget to order some pecan pie, made in house, for dessert.

Zaika Bistro Bar

2303 Ellwood Dr SW, Edmonton, AB T6X 0J6

Butter chicken and naan bread may not be a traditional Thanksgiving meal, but that’s not a bad thing – it’s an opportunity to indulge in delicious Indian cuisine. The restaurant has a buffet from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Sundays, lots of big booths (perfect for families) and a diverse menu that will suit vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. While their mango chicken with coconut rice is my favourite dish on the menu, their samosa trio is also tempting. Plus, they cater to gluten-free eaters, as well.

El Cortez Tequila Bar and Kitchen

8230 Gateway Blvd NW, Edmonton, AB T6E 4B2

Tacos and tequila may not be a common theme for Thanksgiving dinner, but it certainly is a fun one! El Cortez has an extensive tequila and mescal menu, plus fantastic margaritas. And, their food is just as amazing as their cocktails. Start off with their killer guacamole, then dive into some of their weirdly wonderful taco combos, like cinnamon braised pork, steak bulgogi or creamy poblano pollo (chicken). End with their most fall-inspired dessert – spiced corn cake with coconut cream and tequila coffee sauce.

Mikado South Edmonton Common

1903 98 St Nw, Edmonton, AB T6N 1L5

Sushi trumps turkey, in my opinion, especially since I don’t have to cook or clean. I also like to pretend sushi is healthier, although that is definitely debatable! Mikado is known for their super fresh sashimi, delicious meats cooked to perfection on the robata grill, and their massive rolls. I love their avocado roll, which is simple but filling. The restaurant is very family-friendly; call ahead to request one of the private tatami rooms, where your whole family can sit Japanese-style, with your table built into the floor.

Sicilian Pasta Kitchen

11239 Jasper Ave NW, Edmonton, AB T5K 0L5

Located downtown on Jasper Avenue, Sicilian Pasta Kitchen offers Italian comfort food, such as pizza and pasta, alongside decadent entrees, including rack of lamb, salmon and veal scallopine. The restaurant is good for groups, with a diverse menu that will please everyone (including celiacs and vegetarians). It’s down-to-earth food but made with high-end ingredients and exquisite attention to detail, so it’s still appropriate for a nice holiday meal – with none of the work.

Boualouang Laos & Thai

10569 97 St NW, Edmonton, AB T5H 2L4

This is my favourite Thai place in the city. Located in Chinatown, it’s a small, simple restaurant but the food is excellent and it comes out of the kitchen quickly. Whether you desire something spicy and exotic or a warm, comforting bowl of tom ga tee soup, you’ll find it here. The restaurant is family friendly, although parking can be a bit of a challenge (street parking only). It’s also very budget friendly, meaning you can invite your neighbours or that stray from work, to join you.

Accent Lounge

8223 104 St NW, Edmonton, AB T6E 4E7

If you want a fun, kids-free Thanksgiving meal with a few glasses of wine or beer, Accent Lounge offers the ideal atmosphere. This noisy, boisterous lounge always has a great vibe, and the food is incredible. Don’t expect pub food – the menu is sophisticated, with items such as filet mignon, maple Dijon salmon, rack of lamb, Wiener Schnitzel and prawn pasta. Their wine list includes vinos from Canada, France, New Zealand, South Africa, Australia and Italy.

Blue Plate Diner

Main-12323 Stony Plain Rd NW, Edmonton, AB T5N 3Y5

Blue Plate Diner is often hailed as a great brunch spot (which it is) but they also have a lovely dinner menu. Located in the warehouse district downtown, the restaurant is child-friendly (they even have a kids’ menu) and the food is hearty and satisfying. Main dishes range from gnocchi bianca and apple and pork tenderloin to lentil and vegetable loaf or Blue Plate meatloaf. They are known for their mac and cheese, which comes with four kinds of cheese and a creamy béchamel sauce. Try the decadent chocolate peanut butter pie to cap off your meal.

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