While there is nothing wrong with a turkey and mayo sandwich, these recipes get a bit more creative with those holiday leftovers! From leftover turkey to leftover mashed potatoes to leftover stuffing to more, these recipes use Thanksgiving leftovers to create mouthwatering new creations!
I always prepare way too much food for Thanksgiving Dinner. And truthfully, that is on purpose!
After hours and hours of cooking for Thanksgiving, I love being able to rely on Thanksgiving leftovers to make new and delicious creations that can feed my family for days. And trust me, these leftover Thanksgiving Recipes are easy-peasy, but we have all done enough cooking!
How to Store Thanksgiving Leftovers
It is important not to let your Thanksgiving leftovers sit out long after cooking. I highly recommend packaging and refrigerating or freezing your leftovers as soon as the meal has ended. This will help to ensure your food remains safe.
Be sure to follow the guidelines for storage on each recipe. The majority of Thanksgiving dishes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 1 month.
Safely Using Leftovers
When you are making a recipe using leftovers from your Thanksgiving meal, you want to ensure that you enjoy that new creation within 3-4 days after your Thanksgiving feast was cooked. That will ensure the leftovers are still in fact safe to consume.
If you are using frozen leftovers, allow them to thaw fully overnight in the refrigerator. Prepare the leftover recipe as directed and enjoy it within 3 days of thawing your leftovers.
Our Favorite Leftover Thanksgiving Recipes
Whether you have leftover roasted turkey, Instant Pot turkey breast, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, stuffing, and or cranberry sauce, these recipes prove that while turkey sandwiches are delicious, there are a lot more delicious ways to use up your Thanksgiving leftovers.
There could not be a more classic leftover Thanksgiving recipe than Turkey Tetrazzini! This creamy comforting casserole is made with a homemade mushroom sauce that ensures even dried-out leftover turkey will still be delicious.
If you are looking for a completely different flavor profile from Thanksgiving dinner, this is the recipe for you. It comes together quickly and features a richly spiced, creamy tomato broth filled with southwest flavor.
If you like BBQ Chicken Pizza, you will love this leftover Thanksgiving pizza. Made with leftover turkey and leftover cranberry sauce, it is a little sweet, a little spicy, and incredibly tasty!
If you like pierogi, you will LOVE this Mashed Potato Lasagna! Layers of mashed potatoes between sheets of tender pasta that are all covered in cheese. It has to be one of my favorite Thanksgiving leftover recipes.
Swap out the deli turkey meat for thinly sliced or shredded turkey and this wrap and enjoy a tasty lunch the day after Thanksgiving.
12. Turkey & Cranberry Quesadilla
Spread a tortilla with leftover cranberry sauce, and top it with leftover turkey and shredded cheese to make a cheesy turkey quesadilla. This is one of my favorite, simple ways to use Thanksgiving leftovers.
These potato cakes are a super easy recipe using leftover mashed potatoes. They are creamy, cheesy, and irresistibly good. Serve this Thanksgiving leftover recipe as a side dish or a vegetarian entree.
Starring leftover turkey, tender noodles, and a creamy, savory broth, this turkey noodle soup comes together in under 30 minutes to deliver pure comfort!
More Creative Ways to Use Thanksgiving Leftovers
If the above recipes weren't enough, check out some of more quick and simple ways to use your Thanksgiving Leftovers.
- Croutons: Leftover stuffing makes the MOST flavorful croutons ever! Break up leftover stuffing into small chunks and place onto a greased baking sheet in a single layer. Broil for 2-3 minutes per side until golden. Use the stuffing croutons to add a punch of flavor to your salad.
- Sweet Potato Smoothie: Blend ½ cup of sweet potato casserole or leftover pumpkin pie with 1 cup of milk and ½ cup of vanilla yogurt to make a quick smoothie that is the perfect treat!
- Turkey and Rice Casserole: Replace the shredded chicken with leftover turkey and enjoy a creamy, cheesy, hearty rice casserole.
- Tater Tot Casserole: Replace the tater tots with leftover mashed potatoes for a quick and easy version of Shepherd's Pie.
- Turkey Stock: Do not throw your turkey carcass away! Instead, use it to make the most delicious stock! It can be used immediately or frozen to use throughout the next few months in any recipe calling for chicken stock. Follow my recipes for instant pot chicken stock or stovetop chicken stock and simply swap out the chicken bones for the turkey carcass.
I hope these Thanksgiving Leftover Recipes gave you the inspiration to put your leftovers to good use! If you have any other creative ideas for leftovers, I would love for you to share them with us all below in the comments.