After spending all that money on a homemade Thanksgiving feast, you’re not going to waste a scrap of it. You’re going to get creative with the leftovers, right? Ideas for using the extra turkey are abundant, but how do you use the rest of the Thanksgiving leftovers?
We’ve rounded up some ideas and recipes for you.
Instead of just reheating, add some more ingredients (maybe sautéed mushrooms or chopped water chestnuts) and an egg, then make the mixture into patties and fry them to create a new side dish for turkey leftovers. Or try fried stuffing bites with cranberry pesto from chef Sunny Anderson of the Food Network.
These cheerful sweet-tart fruits perk up any dish. Melt some of the leftover berry sauce with maple or pancake syrup to use with breakfast hotcakes or waffles. Throw them into a smoothie for a refreshing start to your day. Use them to glaze a ham, Cornish game hens or duck for another holiday meal. Just melt gently in a saucepan and brush it on toward the end of roasting. Even try the whole-berry sauce as a fruit topping for plain cheesecake.
Try Bobby Flay’s sweet potato soup recipe for a hearty lunch dish. Make a sweet potato pie as a follow-up to the pumpkin one. As long as you didn’t doctor them up too much, you also can use them in muffins and other baked goods. They’ll add nutrition and moistness.
Some pie recipes call for more or less than one regular can of pumpkin. If you have leftover pumpkin, you can use it for pumpkin bread, muffins and pancakes. Or throw some into your morning smoothie (it’s already cooked, so it’s ready to eat). You can even make a sweet or savory dip with it, to serve at a holiday party. The Food Network website boasts it has 50 canned pumpkin recipes.
Gravy and mashed potatoes
Gravy, a nectar of concentrated flavor, makes a perfect addition to your turkey soup and will give it extra body as well as flavor. Or use it in a turkey pot pie or to pour over one.
Leftover mashed potatoes can be stiff and gluey, but with a few additions (an egg, maybe some bacon or ham), they can become a tasty casserole. Top with cheese and bake till the top is brown and bubbly. Or make them into mashed potato cakes. They make a good, traditional topping for your favorite shepherd’s pie recipe.Or use them to make Irish potato bread.
The possibilities are truly endless — and that’s one more reason to be thankful.
If you liked this article, you may also enjoy:
How to maximize your savings while shopping for Thanksgiving dinner
18 creative Thanksgiving leftover recipes
23 delicious uses for Thanksgiving leftovers
More from the Leftovers series:
They aren’t left behind; they’re simply left over.
Turn Christmas dinner leftovers into a New Year’s Eve BBQ
5 leftovers you should never throw away
Use your cookout leftovers in an easy egg bake
Don’t Throw It Out! series
Stamp out food waste year-round…
How to keep spring veggies fresh to avoid food waste
How to keep summer veggies fresh to avoid food waste
How to keep fall fruits and vegetables longer
How to store winter fruits and veggies
How to preserve and avoid wasting fresh fruit