Blog Tips

Thanksgiving Leftover Ideas

Thanksgiving is, without a doubt, the most delicious day of the year. Turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie, green beans, cranberry sauce, and, of course, the potatoes, it’s a feast in every sense of the word. After the turkey is carved, dinner is finished, and belts are loosened, what’s often left is a lot of leftovers. 


While there’s nothing wrong with scooping out a few spoonfuls of sides and hitting the power button on the microwave, there are more creative ways to use Thanksgiving leftovers. 


Create the Ultimate Sandwich


One of the best ways to utilize all that leftover turkey and any other side dishes you may have lying around is to put it all into a sandwich. You may remember the popular episode of Friends where, much to his shock and horror, Ross discovers somebody ate his leftover sandwich.


To create this leftovers masterpiece, you’ll want to layer your sandwich with turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and a slice of gravy-soaked bread in the middle – a.k.a. the moist maker. 


Substitute Turkey for Chicken


If you’re like most people, you probably have enough leftover turkey after Thanksgiving for another full meal or two. One of the best ways of putting this leftover bird to use is to substitute it in place of chicken in some comfort food recipes. 


With November being the start of chilly weather in so many places, adding turkey to a pot pie, soup, or chili dish can be a delicious use of leftovers. 


Other great ways to use leftover turkey include:


  • Turkey salad with cranberries and pecans
  • Turkey rice casserole
  • Turkey soft tacos
  • Barbecue turkey pizza


Make the Most of Leftover Sides


One of the absolute best parts about the Thanksgiving meal is the array of side dishes. From the standard sweet potato casserole to the more unique, like butternut squash lasagna, the sheer variety of potential sides is nearly endless. 


Unless everyone at your dinner table has two stomachs, though, you’re bound to be left with several pieces of Tupperware stacked to the brim with leftovers. 


Green beans, corn, and other veggies can make a perfect addition to a noodle casserole, and mashed potatoes can be used to create potato pancakes or pierogies. If you have leftover dinner rolls, toss on some turkey, a bit of stuffing, and cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving sliders. 


As for all that leftover cranberry sauce, before you toss it in the trash, there are actually quite a few tasty ways to use it. You could keep it simple and add it to some yogurt and granola, top it on pancakes, or get more creative and work it into cranberry sauce meatballs

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