4 Delicious Thanksgiving Leftovers Recipes & Ideas
You prepared all month for the BIG DAY and had enough food to feed an army (despite likely having fewer guests than usual this year), and now that the festivities are over, you are left with ALL THIS FOOD. What now?
Well, if you didn’t send your guests home with Tupperware containers stuffed with leftovers, and you aren’t a fan of freezing them, I have a few tricks up my sleeve.
1. Thanksgiving Leftover Burrito
You could always take a page from a local establishment here in the Carolinas named Flaming Amy’s Burrito Barn. They create what is lovingly referred to as the “Churkeychanga.” It is described as a roasted turkey breast, mashed garlic red skin potatoes, and jalapeno cornbread dressing all rolled up in a flour tortilla and then deep fried. It is topped with a heaping ladle of gravy and served with a cranberry salsa.
Now of course, being the health-conscious individual I am, I would forego the deep-fried part and just make a traditional burrito. But to illustrate what I am talking about, I went ahead and took one for the team and splurged on a Churkeychanga. This. Thing. Did. Not. Disappoint.
Load up your favorite low-carb tortilla and voila! Homemade day-after-Thanksgiving burrito.
2. Thanksgiving Leftover Frittata
As delightful as that was, it is also important that I mention I like to think of these as “ingredients” and not necessarily as leftovers. Each of these food items can be reinvented by using them in a whole new recipe. So, don’t always assume you have to use everything you have [leftover] in the same meal.
For example, eggs pretty much go with EVERYTHING. And since I can name on one hand people I know who can successfully make an omelet without it turning into a jumble of sorts, we are going to make a Thanksgiving leftovers frittata. Turkey and all the fixin’s can absolutely get tossed into a frittata.
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It’s pretty much foolproof in that you scramble some eggs, toss it with your [leftover] ingredients, and bake at 400 degrees F until the eggs are no longer runny. You could also cook on the stovetop over medium heat if you prefer.
3. Thanksgiving Leftovers Soup
A soup would be delightful as well. Add some bone broth or stock to the same [leftover] ingredients and simmer until all the flavors marry. Add a few of whatever herbs and spices you have on hand—keep it simple. Add beans, rice, or even pasta if you are looking to stretch it out. My mouth is already watering.
4. Cranberry Sauce Muffins
My mom whipped up some cranberry sauce muffins one year with the leftover cranberry sauce. My brother is really the only person who would eat the squishy cranberry log from a can. In fact, I used to trade him my serving for another side. But these muffins were amazing. I tried my hand at a healthier recipe, and they turned out pretty darn good.
Here is the recipe I used:
- 1 ½ cup flour
- 1 cup oats
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1/2 cup brown sugar substitute
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 + 1/4 cups leftover cranberry sauce
- 3 Tbsp brown sugar substitute
- 3 Tbsp oats
- 2 scoops Low Carb Protein Blend (Vanilla Cream)
- 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Mix flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, combine butter and sugar substitute.
- Add milk, egg, and vanilla and stir to combine.
- Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gently fold together.
- Add cranberry sauce and stir until just combined.
- Divide batter evenly among muffin tins.
- Mix topping ingredients until crumbly mixture forms.
- Sprinkle a spoonful on top of each muffin.
- Bake for 15 – 18 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.
Yields 24 servings
- Calories: 140
- Fat: 5 g
- Carbs: 19 g
- Fiber: 2 g
- Protein: 4 g
Thanksgiving Leftovers Recipe: A Recap
As previously shared, I also have an article with some great recipes for using up leftover turkey. Additionally, there are many organizations that would love your donations, one being Feeding America. Or you could always stop by your local homeless shelter, or even deliver to a family in need that you know of or in your neighborhood.
I know this year the holidays may not be what you envisioned, or what you remember from previous years, where it was an expression of unity and gathering with your loved ones. This year, I think it is most important to remember the reason for the season. While you may not be able to gather with the usual suspects, use this time to give thanks and be grateful for what you have, who you are, and offer your resources to help those who are less fortunate.
We’re so grateful for everyone in our BioTRUST community and wish you a very Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving!