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Holiday Leftovers Recipe

Let’s make good use of our extra food with a holiday leftover recipe. Before we know it, our Thanksgiving meal will be eaten and some of us will move on to Black Friday. Remainders of the big dinner will still be left in the fridge.

Some of these leftovers may end up forgotten and shoved on the back of the shelf until decades later. Someone in your house may even have the nerve to ask, “What’s to eat?”

I have included three recipes that turn the Thanksgiving leftovers to make a brand-new creation! Your family will not even know that they are eating leftovers from the holiday meal!

3 Holiday Leftovers Recipes

Shepherd’s Pie Made with Turkey or Meatless Alternative

Do you have leftover protein, mashed potatoes and gravy? Try making this recipe! If you don’t have leftovers, you can make up a batch of mashed potatoes, a small pan of gravy and use turkey, hamburger or meat alternative like sauteed Smiling Hara’s tempeh or No Evil Foods plant-meat. I used leftover nut loaf from my Thanksgiving dinner! Makes 6 servings.

1 1/2 cups leftover Thanksgiving turkey or meat alternative

1/2 cup leftover gravy

1 small onion chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

8 ounces mushrooms sliced

1 cup carrots chopped

1 cup frozen peas

2 cups leftover mashed potatoes

1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1 teaspoon thyme

Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat medium sized skillet and add olive oil. When oil is heated add the onion and carrots. Cook them until they are soft and almost begin to brown. Add mushrooms and cook them until they become translucent. Add turkey, ground beef or meat alternative.

Sprinkle in thyme, salt and pepper. Toss in the frozen peas. Add gravy at the end and mix well. Transfer veggie and protein mixture in an “oven proof “baking dish. Add a thin layer of mashed potatoes and sprinkle cheese on top. Bake for 30 minutes.

Winter Squash Stuffed with Dressing

If you have leftover stuffing/dressing and a small pumpkin or winter squash left, this recipe can just hit the spot! 1/2 squash is a serving. Serving that this makes may vary due to how many leftovers and squash that you have.

1 cup leftover Thanksgiving dressing

Sprinkling of dried cranberries

Chopped Apple (optional)

You could also add chopped pecans

Water to dampen the dressing so that it does not dry out in the squash

Cut the pumpkin or winter squash in half and remove the seeds. It is best if the pumpkin is sliced horizontally. Stuff the pumpkin with the stuffing/recipe. Cover with foil and bake 45 minutes. Uncover and bake about 10 more minutes.

If you don’t have leftover squash and you would like to use a sweet potato, you can make a twice baked sweet potato. Bake the sweet potato first, cool, scoop enough of it out to add the stuffing and bake again about 15-20 minutes!

fruit crisp

Cranberry Fruit Crisp

If you have leftover cranberry sauce left and try mixing it with some sliced apples or pears to make a delicious fruit crisp! Here is the recipe.

How to Dress Up a Holiday Leftover Recipe

I hope that you enjoy making these holiday leftover recipes. Or if you like leftovers as they, are you can eat them that up also. Just be cautious to not keep the leftovers too long. Here is a resource that provides information how long you can keep certain foods. Food poisoning: How long can you safely keep leftovers? – Mayo Clinic

I am a local registered dietitian nutritionist in Asheville and I love helping people improve their health by making changes in their food choices! During the holidays, many people find working with a registered dietitian can help them stay on track! You can find our a little more about me here

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