Leftover Turkey – A Cornucopia of Ideas

So, how many of us will have turkey left over?  Quite a few I would guess, so I thought it was time to share some of my leftover ideas.  One thing I have done in the past was freeze cooked, leftover turkey meat in quart size zipper bags so I don’t get too tired of it.  Then, I’ll thaw it out in a month or two and use it in a recipe when I am ready for turkey again.  Whether you are using freshly leftover (is that an oxymoron?) turkey, or thawed previously-frozen cooked turkey, there are a lot of ideas to make meals unique.

Brining Turkey - 17

I will usually make turkey soup of some description.  Start by breaking up the bones, put them in a pot and cover with water.  Add onion and any other aromatic veggies you like, along with some salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, and let it simmer for 2-3 hours.  The bones will be almost clean as you lift them out of the stew.  Pick off any meat clinging to the bones, add back to the pot.  Now, add pasta, dumplings, or beans and simmer until done.  I used pasta this year.  Yum!

Turkey Noodle Soup

Next time I serve this soup, I’ll add some cream and Parmesan cheese, then top with green onions for a Turkey Alfredo soup.

Ever had a Tom Burger?  Just shred turkey meat, add to a pot, cover with barbeque sauce, heat and serve on buns. I’ve even added the leftover jellied cranberry sauce to the barbeque sauce for a sweet, fruity twist on the same old bottled stuff.

How about turkey macaroni and cheese!  Just make your favorite mac-n-cheese, add cubed or shredded turkey and green peas. Top with cheese and bake for a savory casserole.

The recipes I posted before using leftover pork would work nicely with leftover turkey.  Here are links to those recipes, just substitute turkey instead of pork.



Farfalle Pasta


Pot Stickers


A couple of years ago, I created a new recipe for leftover turkey using spinach in a casserole.  I don’t have pictures because I didn’t make it this year, but I promised my friend Barbara T. that I would publish it for her.  Barbara says she likes this even though she isn’t a spinach fan.  So here it is.  Maybe you will enjoy it as a change from the ordinary!

Turkey, Spinach and Rice Casserole

1/4 cup chopped onion
1-2 teaspoons olive oil
2-3 cups diced cooked turkey
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
3/4-1 cup milk
3-4 cups cooked rice
1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed with the excess water squeezed out
1 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic salt
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Sauté onion in olive oil until translucent. Add cooked turkey and sauté for a minute. Add the soup and 3/4 cup milk. Add rice, spinach and seasonings, and mix well. Add more milk if needed. Spray a large casserole dish with cooking spray.  Pour in mixture. Top with cheeses. Bake for 30-45 minutes at 350 degrees until cheese is melted and casserole is bubbling. Serve and enjoy!

I only had a 12-pound turkey this year, and I am already running low on leftovers.  Now I need to decide which recipe to use for the little that is left.  What do you like to do with your leftover turkey?