Recreating Thanksgiving Leftovers

Recreating Thanksgiving Leftovers

As quickly as Thanksgiving has come it will be gone! At the end of the day, after the turkey has been carved and enjoyed, the guests have left, the extras have been packaged up and put in the fridge, and the dishes have been washed, the question remains: what to do with all those leftovers? The Traina family loves making new dishes out of leftovers and shares some easy and creative ways to make Thanksgiving dishes new again!


Turkey — Turkey is so versatile, it can be used much like chicken to make soups, casseroles, pot pies and more! For example, for an easy next-day creamy turkey salad sandwich, mix together some mayo, sour cream and or plain Greek yogurt, dried cranberries, diced celery and onion, chopped turkey, and pecans or walnuts. Spread on a croissant or use those leftover rolls to make a delicious and easy post-Turkey Day lunch!


Mashed Potatoes — Using mini muffin tins, turn mashed potatoes into twice baked croquettes topped with cheddar cheese. Or try a twist on a loaded baked potato by using the standard elements (mashed potatoes, cheese, bacon, sour cream and chives) to make warm, rich Baked Potato soup — some greens such as broccoli or leftover green beans would make a nice addition, too!


Corn — All those opened cans of corn don’t have to go to waste! Using some corn meal (or just all-purpose flour), seasonings and leftover corn, create a pancake-like batter, and shallow-fry small silver dollar sized portions in a pan until golden brown and crispy on the outside. Serve with a spicy aioli for dipping, sprinkle with cheese before serving or even eat them alongside some turkey chili!


Green Beans — Leftover green beans or green bean casserole can be used in soups or that aforementioned turkey pot pie (some corn would also be a great addition to that savory pie!). Plain green beans can be used to create a vegetable soup or added to turkey chili, while the remains of a green bean casserole would make a great base for a creamy soup.


Cranberry Sauce — Don’t let that cranberry sauce get lost in the back of the fridge! The sauce can be used to make muffins (a wonderful post-Thanksgiving day breakfast!) or whipped into yogurt to make a yogurt parfait with granola topping. Mix the cranberries or sauce with plain cream cheese to make a spread for a bagel, or even a dip for graham crackers or vanilla wafers. 


Why let all the amazing components of a Thanksgiving feast (not to mention all the hard work that went into preparing it!) go to waste come Black Friday? This year, get creative with those leftovers and watch family members and guests come back for seconds, thirds, fourths and more!