After all that effort for the big event, Holiday leftovers are often part of the reward with more meals to come. But don’t think that has to be the same sandwich on repeat – try one of these delicious, creative ideas for turkey, sides and even pie!
If you’re anything like me, after you’ve consumed your weight in food, initially, you want nothing more to do with it, right? Whatever you have stuffed yourself with for Thanksgiving, Christmas or whatever other celebration, the chances are you have some extra. It’s kind of the reward for the effort in making it that it isn’t all gone in a flash.
However much as it can be good to enjoy having some of the leftovers just as they are cold or in a sandwich, it can quickly become a bit boring and you need something else instead. Fear not, here are some great ideas on how to use those holiday leftovers to make an entirely different but truly delicious dish.
Recipes for leftover turkey (or chicken)
This is one of those recipes that can be zero effort with bought sauce, or take just a few minutes more to make your sauce from scratch. I highly recommend making your own for one delicious meal that’s definitely nothing like your Holiday meal.
Keeping with the curry idea, this beautiful korma from Supergolden Bakes is going on the list to try too.
Because who doesn’t love pizza? This colorful pizza from Art from my Table is a great way to use both some turkey and cranberry sauce, too.
While I’ve never understood why this pie has the name it does (or if it’s just us that calls it that), Australian pie is a staple in our family to use up some turkey. It’s a delicious combination and not only can you enjoy it warm, pack a cold slice in your lunch box.
Pastilla (savory pie/tart)
Pastilla is a delicious Moroccan savory pie with crisp filo pastry around a warmly spiced meat filling. Here it’s adapted to be a great use of leftovers.
It’s probably cold outside, so chances are a hearty stew will perfectly fit the bill, like this turkey and butternut squash stew from Cooking Chat. Filling, flavorful and good for you too.
Aji de gallina (Peruvian chicken stew)
Another stew-like dish is this Peruvian dish which combines shredded meat (traditionally chicken but turkey would also work) with an unusual and delicious sauce made with walnuts, cheese and chili.
It might be wintery outside, but this is one salad you will be wanting to make. Full of fantastic flavors, incredibly easy to prepare, it makes the perfect lunch that’s far removed from the feast that came before. It’s a detox both in flavor and with it’s veggie goodness.
Continuing to battle the cold, this soup from Flavor the Moments also lets you take it easy in the cooking department. Hearty and tasty.
Bake some turkey right into your cornbread for a tasty side or even breakfast, from The Worktop.
These crepes are a deliciously comforting way to use some leftover turkey, whether for lunch or a light meal. You could also serve the filling with rice or in a baked potato.
Recipes for leftover sides
Use up some of your sides, as well as some turkey, for breakfast with this delicious savory bread pudding from The Flavor Bender. Lots of flavor and cheesy to boot.
Bubble and squeak might not mean much to non-Brits, but it’s a delicious way to use up leftover veg, and these cakes from Wallflower Kitchen makes it even easier to eat in snack-sized bites.
These rolls using leftover sweet potato from Trial and Eater are a great addition to a meal, or use some for one of those turkey sandwiches.
Farl is the Scottish name for potato scones, a common addition to a hearty cooked breakfast. Here a combination of potato and parsnip makes a gently sweet, delicious use for some leftover mash.
Eat leftovers for breakfast in this simple, comforting dish from The Kittchen.
This recipe may not have been written with leftovers in mind, but this is another great way to use up leftover sweet potatoes. And these take mere minutes to make with the help of a food processor.
Moving away from savory options, a very different use for any leftover sweet potato casserole is to make these delicious muffins from Magnolia Days. Easy to make, moist and a lovely color from the sweet potato.
Recipes for leftover cranberry sauce
OK, true, you might have had a number of treats by this point, but hey this one is covered in fruit (leftover cranberry sauce), and is pretty easy to make. If that doesn’t sell these bars from Dessert for Two, then just look at the color.
Cranberry sauce isn’t only good for going on your turkey, it can also make a great filling for these tasty filled shortbread cookies. Think an already melt-in-your-mouth shortbread with a slightly gooey centre. So delicious!
These flavorful pancakes from Major Hoff takes a Wife are serves with a compote that conveniently uses up some cranberry sauce. All the more reason to try them.
Keeping with the more traditional savory use of cranberry sauce but in a different way, this cheese tart is a delicious lunch idea.
You’ve had your slice of pie, now drink it! While at first it might seem odd, I can totally see this drink from A Beautiful Plate tasting great.
These parfaits from Clean Eating Kitchen are another creative way to use some leftover pie in a different way – and the perfect excuse to eat pie for breakfast!
OK, so it’s not strictly speaking using up dessert, but if you make a pumpkin pie you may well have leftover pumpkin puree, and this is a great way to use it in a very different, very tasty way.
I know this one is less likely to be used in the US, but for anyone including us who will be having Christmas pudding, this is a great recipe to have handy. Give it a new lease of life in these tasty muffins, fruity and flavorful.As you’ll see, there are so many ways to give leftovers a new lease of life in a creative way. The only question is, which will you try first?!
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