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How to Use Up Leftover Turkey

This year, liven up your leftover-turkey repertoire with some new recipes.


  • Step 1: Turn it into appetizers Turn your leftover turkey into appetizers: Combine 2 parts shredded turkey with 1 part cream cheese, curry powder to taste, and a splash of lemon juice. Drop a teaspoon of the mixture into the center of refrigerated crescent rolls that have been cut in half. Fold tops over to seal; bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit until golden, about 12 minutes.
  • Step 2: Update the open-faced sandwich Update the open-faced turkey sandwich: mix a cup of shredded turkey with 1/3 cup of mayonnaise, a tablespoon of mustard, and salt and pepper to taste. Spread the turkey mixture on a warm baguette and top with any leftover cranberry sauce.
  • Step 3: Make Peking turkey Use up leftover turkey by tweaking Peking duck: Pick up Chinese buns or pancakes and a jar of hoisin sauce from an Asian market. Shred turkey and microwave it until just warm; meanwhile, steam the buns or pancakes. Serve with the hoisin sauce and matchstick slices of scallions and cucumbers.
  • TIP: In a pinch, flour tortillas can be used in place of Chinese pancakes or buns.
  • Step 4: Pull together a pulled turkey sandwich Pull together a pulled turkey sandwich: Put shredded leftover turkey into a saucepan; add a cup of barbecue sauce and 1/2 cup of chopped onion for every 3 cups of meat, plus a dash of hot sauce. Bring to a boil, then simmer until turkey is heated through, stirring occasionally -- about 30 minutes. Serve on warm rolls, topped with coleslaw.
  • Step 5: Make shepherd's pie Use up several leftovers in one dish by making a shepherd's pie, substituting shredded turkey for ground meat. The traditional recipe calls for peas and a mashed potato topping, but feel free to throw in whatever leftover vegetables you have and top with whipped sweet potatoes or a combination of sweet and white.
  • Step 6: Freeze it If you still have leftover turkey and can't stomach the thought of another turkey dinner, wrap the meat in heavy-duty aluminum foil and pop it in the freezer. Use within 6 months.
  • FACT: 14 percent of Americans say they never have Thanksgiving leftovers because they eat every crumb!

You Will Need

  • Thanksgiving leftovers
  • Creativity

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