Tips and Tricks for Your Thanksgiving Turkey – New Orleans style!

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and there is a lot of delicious cooking to be done! For many people, the turkey is the most important part of the Thanksgiving meal, and we want everyone to know that we are sharing our New Orleans tradition with everyone! Our Cajun fried turkeys are a great addition to any Thanksgiving feast!

Since our Atlanta opening, 15 years ago, we have been frying turkeys for families all over Atlanta. In the last 15 years we have sold more than 20,000 of our Cajun fried turkeys here in Atlanta.

In the spirit of the holiday, we want to give all of our readers a few tips from Copeland’s Atlanta CEO Bill Goudey for cooking these turkeys at home.

  • Thaw the bird for two day and drain it completely.
  • Inject with poultry seasonings and marinade for 24 hours, then cook in 350°F peanut oil.
  • Make sure the turkey is dry before placing it into the oil, so that the oil will keep from sparking.
  • Turn off the flame when you put the turkey in or you could get burned!
  • Watch to make sure the pot does not boil over and is protected at all times.
  • It only takes 45 minutes to cook a 12-14 pound turkey, but the instructions are the most important tool.
  • When using a recipe, study the ingredients. If you see something in the ingredients that you and your family do not like or can not use, then try to think of another ingredient.

To watch us prepare one of our Cajun fried turkeys, be sure to check out the video of our Managing Partner Glen Helmstetter’s turkey demonstration!

Our Cajun fried turkeys are available from the catering and Holiday Specials menu at both Copeland’s of New Orleans locations in Atlanta for the holidays and year-round. Don’t forget to visit our website from more information         (!


CURE it with a Coin Toss at Copeland’s!

Easter Brunch Check Pic



Left to right: Glen Helmstetter, managing partner of Copeland’s of New Orleans – Atlanta; Kristin Connor, executive director of CURE; April Voris, board chair of CURE; and Bill Goudey, CEO of Copeland’s of New Orleans – Atlanta.

A Rewarding Partnership

By Shiyra Sadoff

Since the summer of 2011,  Copeland’s of New Orleans-Atlanta Franchise (Copeland’s  Atlanta)  has been a big booster of  CURE Childhood Cancer, which is dedicated to conquering childhood cancer through funding targeted research and support of patients and their families.

In 2012 Copeland’s placed a plaque on the outside fountain of its two restaurants–at Cumberland and Kennesaw–that dedicates all change in the fountain to CURE Childhood Cancer. As they enter and exit the two restaurants, customers get involved with CURE as well by tossing coins that  impact CURE families. When you make a wish, you’re answering the wishes of a CURE family!

Since 2011, the restaurants have partnered with CURE as an Open Arms at Lunch sponsor by providing and serving lunches several times a year, including Thanksgiving day. Open Arms is a program in which weekly meals are delivered to the CURE children and families in the Aflac Cancer Center at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston and Scottish Rite Hospitals. These meals help bring a sense of home and comfort to patients and their families.  During Christmas, gift certificates for Copeland’s famous Cajun Fried Turkeys are donatedto CURE families outside the hospitals.

In 2012 and 2013, Copeland’s donated 20% of the proceeds from a Saturday brunch at the two restaurants on the week before Easter, which raised almost $2200.00.  Last September, it provided restaurant gift cards to the mothers at CURE’s Quiet Heroes luncheon.

Bill Goudey, CEO of Copeland’s Atlanta franchise, says that what makes him so dedicated to this cause is, “Seeing your own kids that you are caring for and hoping that they never have to go through that.” This cause is very close to Bill’s heart as he has two young children and also lost his parents to cancer as well. The common goal to fund cancer research has given Copeland’s and CURE a strong bond and the motivation to work together.

Copeland’s goes out of its way to make sure that CURE families are taken care of. Lisa Branch, Director of Patient Services at CURE, stated that, “Our patients and their families are grateful for each meal and CURE is grateful to wonderful restaurants like Copeland’s who are making a difference for families who have a child diagnosed with cancer.”

Feel free to toss a coin during your visit to Copeland’s and help us make their wishes come true!

Meet Glen Helmstetter, managing partner of Copeland of New Orleans—Atlanta Franchise

Meet Glen Helmstetter, managing partner of Copeland of New Orleans—Atlanta Franchise—One of the People Who Makes Copeland’s a Special Place.

“You either love the restaurant business or it chews you up” says Glen Helmstetter, Managing Partner with Copeland’s of New Orleans Atlanta Franchise. With 30 plus years in the business, it is apparent that he loves the business. “Like most people who are lifers in this industry I started out young and at the bottom washing dishes when I was 14 years old at a neighborhood seafood restaurant in New Orleans.” It didn’t take long for him to find his niche in the business, “I loved the atmosphere of being where everyone was. happy and having a good time, the camaraderie of the staff was big influence to me”

When Thornings Seafood Restaurant closed its doors, it had a profound impact on the 20 year old who had spent 6 years working every aspect of the business. “I loved that restaurant and when the owners decided to close I thought I had no options”–until a fateful drive and he saw a sign for a soon to open restaurant named Copeland’s of New Orleans on the Westbank of New Orleans. “I had done everything at Thornings except wait on the tables- the managers insisted that I apply for server- had no idea how much I would enjoy serving tables and the energy that could be produced in a large restaurant.” He met a couple of important people at Copeland’s, “On the opening team where my wife Amanda and my partner Bill Goudey, I liked them both very much at the time but had no idea how important they would be to me 30 years later!”

He left Copeland’s and opened a restaurant of his own in Algiers- “The folks who opened Thornings after a while closed down and I decided to buy it and open it back up as Captain’s Cove, it was a scary exciting experience but I loved every minute of it”. A fateful meeting one late afternoon would change his life forever. “I had opened up and was doing anything we could to get business in, a banker friend of mine suggested I join the Kiwainis club that was forming at the time. They met at 7:00am on Thursdays which was not a great hour for me being that I worked a ton of nights. The first meeting I attended I was at a Shoney’s close to my restaurant, they were outgrowing the room and where looking for a more permanent home- I was shocked when someone said- how about Glen’s place- I reluctantly agreed but it was the best thing I ever did- it changed my life. My restaurant had more exposure than ever and my business picked up a great deal right after I started hosting the meetings. One day my future wife walked in, she was marketing manager for Shoneys in New Orleans and came to check out the competition that had stolen the Kiwanis Club from one of her stores. Amanda and I noticed each other as soon as she walked in the door, we had dinner the next night and have been together ever since. I am so grateful I didn’t have the nerve to tell the Kiwanis that they couldn’t have their meetings at my restaurant.