Let’s Talk Turkey…. Leftovers!

Another Thanksgiving has come and gone. That 20-pound turkey you made sure was delicious. And leftover turkey can be even better—if you know what to do with it! Before your family can say “Ugh, Thanksgiving dinner again?” here are our favorite ways to transform ho-hum leftover turkey into something your family will truly be thankful for!

Turkey and Waffles

Everyone loves waffles for breakfast, but they make an even better addition to lunch or dinner. Waffles and fried chicken are a great pairing, so why not waffles and turkey? Sure, you can go the easy route and use frozen waffles but homemade (or semi-homemade) is so much better! You will need a waffle iron of course, so heat it up and let’s get started!  There are several great recipes online for homemade Belgian waffles, but our favorite waffle recipe comes from the Pioneer Woman. If you are pressed for time, box mixes also make for excellent semi-homemade waffles. For an interesting twist on the turkey and waffles idea, Rachael Ray uses leftover stuffing in her waffle maker! Get her Leftover Stuffing Waffles with Turkey recipe here and on our Pinterest Thanksgiving Board! Top your Turkey and Waffles with hot, leftover gravy and cranberry sauce — yum!

Turkey Tetrazzini

We’ve tried a quite a few, but our favorite Turkey Tetrazzini recipe comes from Martha Stewart. This casserole is the perfect way to reimagine leftover turkey (it tastes amazing and nothing like Thanksgiving dinner). Plus it’s quick and simple to make! Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. In a bowl, combine breadcrumbs, 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 3 tablespoons of butter, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Toss in a cup of diced onion, 1 ¼ cup sliced mushrooms, and 1-teaspoon salt. Cover and cook for three minutes. Remove the lid and cook three minutes more, stirring constantly. Transfer to a separate bowl and add 2 cups of cooked turkey, shredded or cut into small cubes, and 1 cup of frozen peas. Set aside. In same pan, whisk 3 ¾ cups of homemade or low-sodium canned chicken stock, 3 tablespoons of butter, and 6 tablespoons of all-purpose flour. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer. Whisk until thick, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in lemon juice, thyme, and 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Combine sauce, turkey, and cooked noodles in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish; top with breadcrumbs. Bake until golden and bubbling, 13 to 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Turkey Pot Pie

Turkey Pot Pie is delicious and simple to make when you use refrigerated pie crust and frozen veggies. We love this recipe for Classic Turkey Pot Pie from Pillsbury. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees and soften a box of refrigerated piecrusts as directed on the package. In a medium saucepan, melt 1/3 cup of butter over medium heat. Add 1/3 of chopped onion to the pot and cook until tender. Stir in 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour 1/ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper until blended. Gradually stir in a 14-ounce can of chicken broth and ½ cup of milk, cooking and stirring until bubbly and thickened. Next, add 2 ½ cups of cooked turkey, shredded or cut into small cubes, and 2 cups of frozen mixed vegetables, thawed. Line your pie pan with one of the refrigerated piecrusts and spoon your mixture into on top. Top with the second piecrust. Seal edges and cut slits on top to vent. Bake 30 to 40 minutes or until crust is golden brown. During the last 15 to 20 minutes of baking, cover the edge of the crust with strips of foil to prevent excessive browning. Let your pot pie stand 5 minutes before serving.