Thanksgiving Leftover Recipes
Repurpose all of that leftover turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes with these Thanksgiving leftover recipes.
Thanksgiving is TOMORROW! Can you believe it?!
In my family, it wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without being able to stock up on at least a couple of days worth of leftovers once dinner is finished. I always factor leftovers into my menu planning and make sure to have disposable containers on hand so that guests can fill them up after dinner.
In the event that you are pretty much over the turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes once you roll home on Thanksgiving night, I’m sharing some recipes that will utilize those leftovers. They may be leftovers, but you’ll get brand new dishes out of them!
Don’t forget to cap these off with some leftover pumpkin pie! :)
1. How to Make Homemade Turkey Stock – Whatever you do, don’t throw away that carcass! This takes virtually no hands-on time, and your freezer will be stocked for months to come.
2. Thanksgiving Leftovers Casserole – My grandma used to make this all of the time, not just after Thanksgiving. It doesn’t look like much, but I promise it’s delicious!
3. Turkey, Mushroom & Wild Rice Soup – It went from 70 degrees to full-on blustery winter within a few days here, so a bowl of hot soup would be perfect for the weekend.
4. Turkey Pot Pie – My friend made this last weekend after doing a turkey practice run, and she texted me telling me how much her husband LOVED this. It’s a winner!
5. Turkey Tetrazzini – Hands down, my favorite way to repurpose the turkey!
6. Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole – Just substitute turkey for the chicken! And if you really want to get crazy, chop up some leftover Brussels sprouts instead of using broccoli and maybe even stuffing in place of rice?! [And while we’re at it, you can check out my chicken archives for some other soups and casseroles that would be conducive to replacing with turkey!]
Q: What is your favorite way to use up Thanksgiving leftovers?
Can a turkey carcass be used for stock if there are still remnants of stuffing that was inside the turkey?
Congratulations on your baby’s first Thanksgiving! As the years have gone by we have done a bunch of different things with leftovers. Our favorite one was to make almost like a Bruschetta…Italian bread, lightly toasted, then a smear of cranberry sauce, turkey, stuffing, then mashed potatoes – all piled high..then a sprinkle of grated cheddar cheese. Pop it in the oven to heat up and serve with leftover gravy. Crazy, but that’s how this family goes. Now, my husband and nephew like to make Thanksgiving burritos…they just pile everything into a large flour tortilla and make Leftover Burritos. Either way you go, it’s all delicious!
Congratulations again, and enjoy every moment!!
Thank you so much Christine! :)
I like making a grilled cheese with turkey, cranberry sauce, peppery mustard, and brie. Mmmmm.
That sounds amazing!
Do you have a recipe for turkey croquettes? I love them but haven’t had them in years and years.
Hi Allison, I don’t, but I’ll it to my list!
Hi Michelle & Allison! Our family makes croquettes with leftover turkey almost every year! We make them with chicken too as they are often requested by two of my sons Ryan and chad for their birthdays dinners! Croquettes really stretch the leftover meat for a filling meal! They also are pretty amazing served in a croissant ? Gooseberry patch has an awesome recipe for turkey croquettes ( you can google it or Pinterest ?) which is exactly how I make mine with the exception of I like to use some panko in my bread crumbs, and I add savory, a bit of poultry seasoning, garlic, ( which I add to most anything) and celery seed ( which I always have on hand)instead of the celery salt their recipe calls for. Happy leftovers and croquette making!
We always make turkey chow mein with our leftovers and have it over white rice. Diced turkey, diced onion and celery, garlic powder, salt and pepper and a small pinch of sugar. Put all into some of the leftover gravy and simmer for a few minutes to incorporate the flavors well and then serve over fluffy white rice. Soo good. This is an old family favorite after Thanksgiving as well as my mom’s homemade turkey soup with homemade noodles and nutmeg.
I’m totally digging these Asian-inspired meals for leftover turkey! Thanks so much for sharing, I can’t wait to try it!
Thank you. I totally love your website and recipes. I did forget one thing with the chow mein and that is to add a little cornstarch to the liquid to thicken it a little.
We hail from the beautiful country of Argentina. Turkey is not commonly consumed there, but EMPANADAS are! Day after thanksgiving, we have custom fillings for whatever everyone wants. (Make ahead or buy the empanada dough rounds by La Salteña). Delicious filled with creamed spinach and mashed potatoes; diced turkey and stuffing, or whatever you choose. Seal, brush with egg, bake, and enjoy!! Happy Thanksgiving! I’m new to your blog and enjoy waking up to your musings.
Oh I’ve never made empanadas, but they have been on my bucket list forever! Thanks so much for the suggestion!
The turkey is my least favorite part of the meal and my least favorite leftover to use.
I like your Thanksgiving leftovers casserole, even without the turkey. Two of my favorite Thanksgiving leftover dishes involve using the dressing. One is Sam Sifton’s Thanksgiving Eggs and the other is dressing egg rolls. I found that idea a couple of years ago and it’s surprisingly good! A couple of tablespoons of dressing rolled up in an egg roll and fried. I like them with cranberry sauce. They can be served by themselves as a snack or alongside fried rice or a stir-fry using the leftover turkey.
Hi Sally, The turkey is absolutely my least favorite part of the meal, as well. I could do without it totally! I love your idea of the egg rolls and a turkey fried rice or stir fry – brilliant!
so many great ideas here for leftovers – so much turkey, so little time.
I always want to do something fun with left overs but it always ends up that all I want is a turkey sandwich!
Michelle, your recipes make me thankful for you and your hard work all year round! In the past (when we host and have more leftovers) I have made your turkey stock, turkey tetrazzini, and turkey pot pie. All fabulous! This year, we celebrated with international friends here in Germany last weekend, and I made a first-time-ever (for me) Corn & Ham Chowder with the leftover creamed corn, shredded sweet potato, turkey + chicken stock, and other veggies. Topped it off with pan-browned ham. My husband is not a corn or other-veggies eater but he loved this and took seconds. Was oh-so-good with leftover cornbread muffins. Thanksgiving is a holiday that keeps on giving!
Your turkey stock recipe is the only one I use (for chicken, too). It’s simple and so good. This year, I only have a turkey breast, so much less stock than normal. Happy Thanksgiving!
The Turkey and Wild Rice soup is going to definitely happen! Hopefully I’ll get a chance to buy some mushrooms…My family’s favorite Thanksgiving leftovers recipe is turkey paella from the 2006 Cooking Light cookbook. It’s amazing!