Thanksgiving is officially over, and now the biggest question is: what do I do with all of the leftovers? I have a few ideas to make a completely different meal using everything that you have left – and the best part is that you won’t even realize you are eating leftovers!
I always over estimate the amount of food I need, one because I’d rather have too much than not enough, and two because I just love leftovers. I think it’s nice to be able to open the fridge and have already prepared dishes that you can combine into a quick meal – because really, who wants to be stuck in the kitchen right after you spent the day cooking? Not me!
I have three different ideas to share with you, and I say ideas because these are really just methods of throwing everything together – no measuring required! All of these take no time at all to put together, and I promise you they are very easy and delicious.
First up is my great-grandmothers Turkey Pie; a version of a potpie that uses turkey, gravy, stuffing, potatoes and any veggies you may have leftover. I always keep some homemade piecrust in my freezer, which makes this leftover meal quick and easy to whip up – it’s also a great make-ahead meal (perfect for make-ahead Monday!).
This recipe can easily be tailored to accommodate your leftovers – if you only have turkey you can sauté up some celery and onions along with carrots and add some diced potatoes (this is what my great-grandmothers recipe calls for, but I like to use as much leftovers as possible!).
1 Tbsp. Butter
2 Carrots, finely diced
1 Cup Leftover Stuffing
½ Cup Leftover Gravy
Chicken broth, for thinning sauce
1 ½ Cups Leftover Turkey, shredded
1 Cup Leftover Vegetables
1/3 Cup Light Cream or Milk
1 Pie Crust, preferably homemade, rolled out into a 12-inch circle
1 Egg, beaten with 1 tbsp. water for egg wash
Preheat the oven to 400º.
In a medium saucepan melt the butter and add the carrots, sauté until soft. Add in the stuffing and mix well, then add in the gravy. Pour in enough chicken broth to thin the gravy and make a sauce; bring to a simmer. Add in the turkey and vegetables and heat for about 2 minutes. Take off the heat and add in the cream or milk; mix well. Pour into a pie dish and top with prepared piecrust, seal by pressing the dough against the pie dish. Brush the dough with the egg wash and cut a few slits in the middle to allow steam to escape.
Bake at 400º for 40-45 minutes, or until the top is nicely browned.
Next, we have a Turkey and Cranberry Panini; leftover turkey, cranberry sauce, and gruyere cheese, placed between two slices of sourdough bread and grilled to perfection. All I can say about this one is yum!
Feel free to use whatever cheese and bread you like here – this one is super easy and great for lunch or a light dinner.
Turkey and Cranberry Panini
Spread leftover cranberry sauce on one side of a slice of sourdough bread, top with some leftover sliced turkey and sprinkle with grated gruyere cheese, top with another slice of sourdough bread. Grill the sandwich on a panini press or a grill pan and enjoy.
Last, but not least, and my personal favorite – Turkey Hash. Crisp potatoes seasoned with onions and garlic, leftover turkey and vegetables makes a great hash – add a fried egg on top and some sourdough toast and you have a quick meal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
This recipe is very versatile – you can easily experiment with different flavors and vegetables to use up whatever leftovers you may have.
2 Tbsp. Butter
2 Potatoes, sliced and boiled for 5 minutes
Salt & Pepper, to taste
1 Onion, thinly sliced
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 Cup Leftover Vegetables, such as Brussels sprouts
1 Cup Leftover Turkey, shredded
Sourdough Bread, for toast
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Melt the butter and add the potatoes and season with salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of paprika. Sauté until potatoes are lightly browned and add in the onion; cook until potatoes and onions are a deep golden brown. Add in the garlic and cook for 1 minute, then add the vegetables and shredded turkey; let cook over low heat to heat through.
In another skillet, melt a small amount of butter and fry up eggs to your liking – season with salt and pepper. Toast your bread and butter if desired.
Place hash evenly between four plates and top each with a fried egg and some toast.
Do you have tons of leftovers? What are your favorite ways to use them up?