What to do with Thanksgiving Leftovers

 

If you have leftovers this Thanksgiving, don’t settle for reheating plate after plate of mashed potatoes and progressively drying turkey breast. Instead, choose a few of these crowd-pleasing recipes and rework the same old Thanksgiving leftovers into dishes that will get those leftovers eaten in no time.


TURKEY DISHES

Cindy’s Turkey Salad
Use a whopping 5 cups of leftover turkey in this savory turkey salad recipe. Perfect for sandwiches, wraps, and as a protein on a green salad, this recipe will keep lean turkey moist and ready to eat.

Slow Cooker Quinoa Chili
Ideal for long, cold workdays, slow cooker turkey quinoa chili is packed with flavor but doesn’t hit you with a heavy calorie count. Loaded with healthy sweet potatoes and black beans with turkey and quinoa for protein, this meal will leave you feeling happy, full, and proud of your health-conscious choice.

Instant Pot Turkey Tetrazzini
Combine leftover turkey, dried tortellini, mushrooms, onions in the instant pot for rich and comforting classic tetrazzini in a fraction of the usual time.

Turkey Tamale Pie
Use shredded turkey in this seasonal take on the ever-popular tamale pie.

Turkey Carcass Soup
Don’t throw the bones away! Instant pot turkey carcass soup will yield the rich turkey broth you love without requiring you to simmer a pot on the stove for hours.

Turkey Tom Kha Gai
This recipe uses turkey and turkey broth instead of chicken or beef, but the flavor notes are otherwise faithful to the original Thai cuisine and will “make you forget you even oven roasted a turkey.”

Turkey and Stuffing Stuffed Peppers
Peppers stuffed with Thanksgiving leftovers? Yes, please. Use up leftover turkey and get several servings of your daily veg with these delicious stuffing-stuffed peppers.

Turkey Spring Rolls with Cranberry Sweet and Sour Dipping Sauce
You’ll probably want to enlist help wrapping your spring rolls, but otherwise, this clever recipe is simple as long as you’re comfortable deep frying.

Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
This shepherd’s pie uses leftover mashed potatoes, carrots, and turkey. Ideal for younger (read: picky) eaters and those who love the simplicity of the classics, this comforting shepherd’s pie will please most.

Turkey Nachos
These turkey nachos with veggies and hot sauce are perfect for post-Thanksgiving football afternoons and rushed family dinner nights.

Mashed Potato Waffle Melts
These decadent mashed potato waffles are only the start of these outrageous sandwiches. Break out the eggs, avocado, brie, cranberry sauce, bacon, and leftover turkey and get ready to say, “We’re making these again next year.”

Slow Cooker Turkey Pumpkin Chili
This slow cooker turkey is lighter, definitely qualifying as fully healthy, yet it’s still comforting and warming. Serve with cornbread or leftover dinner rolls, whichever you have left.

Turkey Pot Pie with Phyllo Crust
This creamy pot pie recipe packs leftover lean turkey breast, carrots, peas, and pearl onions together under a crispy, flaky phyllo dough crust.

Turkey Hash
Pairing leftover turkey with onion, red potatoes, and red bell pepper, this holiday take on the classic hash is perfect for breakfast when you get back from your Black Friday shopping.


HAM RECIPES

Hawaiian Fried Rice
Stir-fry leftover ham with bell pepper, onion, rice, pineapple, soy sauce, and a drizzle of sesame oil for a taste of Hawaii right where you are.

Grilled Cubano
Your ham is probably going to be oven-baked, not boiled, but don’t let that stop you from preparing this beloved Cuban sandwich.

Ham and Cheese Hash Brown Waffles
Ham and cheese sandwiched between layers of hash browns and grilled in a waffle iron for the perfect combo of textures and flavors to make you feel like your favorite diner is serving at your house this morning.

Oven Baked Jambalaya
This warm and spicy jambalaya will use up any extra ham, but you can also sub turkey for chicken for a doubly-effective use of leftovers.


BRISKET DISHES

Editor’s note: while we have heard of leftover brisket, we’ve never seen it happen, therefore we are keeping this section purposefully brief. 🙂

Smoked Brisket Shepherd’s Pie with Jalapeno Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
The title says it all: use up your leftover smoked brisket with this spicier, more flavorful take on the standard shepherd’s pie.

Brisket Tacos
These brisket tacos are quick and simple, but still delicious thanks to the complexity smoke brisket brings to any dish.


DESSERTS

Holiday Sweet Potato Sweet Cake
Use up 2 whole cups of cooked sweet potato making this rich holiday cake. Reviewers rave that it’s easy to make, extra moist, and so it’s equally delicious without icing. Make them as muffins for children who have to head back to school after Thanksgiving; serve for breakfast along with scrambled eggs or send as dessert in your child’s brown bag lunch.

Sweet Potato Spoon Bread with Caramel Pecan Topping
Dessert spoon bread to use up sweet potatoes, the last of a bag of roasted pecans, and baking spices. Drizzled with a rich caramel sauce.

Healthy Pumpkin Muffins
Use leftover pumpkin and maple syrup with these gluten-free, reduced sugar pumpkin muffins.

Pumpkin French Toast Bake
Throw this pumpkin French toast bake together as you’re putting away your leftovers and it will be ready to pop in the oven when you get back from your holiday shopping on Friday.

Cranberry Cream Cheese Turnovers
These delightful cranberry cream cheese turnovers make use of leftover cranberry sauce and are a perfect alternative for those who have never seen the appeal of a cranberry and turkey sandwich.

Sweet Potato Hummus
For a less sugary sweet potato dish, try this creative take on hummus. With plenty of garlic and the usual chickpeas, this sweet and savory dip will help you get back on track once the festivities are through.


We at Parks Realty wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving and a safe Black Friday. Hopefully, you and your family enjoy your Thanksgiving leftovers even more with these tested and beloved leftover recipes.

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