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Delicious Ideas for Thanksgiving Leftovers

By Sharon Gerhardt, November 8, 2012  |  Meet the Blogger  |  More Posts by Sharon Gerhardt

There’s lots of talk about turkey leftovers but what about that leftover stuffing or cranberry sauce? Here are some easy ways to use them up. In fact, I suggest buying extras of these Thanksgiving pantry staples because these recipes are delicious any time of year.

Holiday Prep


Stuffing and turkey make a perfect pair. So get a package of the 365 Everyday Value® Organic Stuffing Mix to go along with the bird. You could even serve the stuffing up a little differently by making Stuffins – something like a stuffing muffin!

Plan ahead and make for extra stuffing, because with leftovers you can whip up really easy dinners like stuffed acorn squash or meatloaf (use the stuffing in place of breadcrumbs).

One of my favorite ways to use leftover stuffing is in breakfast! Top a Savory Stuffing Cake with crisp bacon and a fried egg for a super simple day-after Thanksgiving breakfast. A Thanksgiving Weekend Strata is also a lovely ending to the holiday festivities and a lovely way to use all those leftovers – turkey and cranberry sauce included.

Cranberry Sauce

A must-have on my Thanksgiving table is cranberry sauce. 365 Everyday Value® Organic Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce is a time-saver and is deliciously sweet and tangy.

That sweet and tangy flavor is perfect for Five-Spice Cranberry Glazed Chicken Wings, which are perfect for game watching. You could also save some cans to make a Christmas-party hors d’oeuvre of Pigs in a Blanket with Cranberry Mustard Dipping Sauce. And of course it’s the perfect topping for a sandwich, like Turkey and Cranberry or Ham and Brie.


No meal is complete without pumpkin pie! Buy one can of our 365 Everyday Value® 100% Pure Pumpkin and make a Traditional Pumpkin Pie, or a Vegan Pumpkin Pie or maybe even a Pumpkin Pie with Pecan Crust and Cinnamon-Spiced Whipped Cream. Yum!

But make sure you buy an extra can or two of pumpkin purée for a weekend breakfast of Pumpkin and Millet Muffins or a dinner of Turkey Pumpkin Chili (a great use of that leftover turkey, too!). Can’t get enough? Stock up on the purée and welcome your mornings with a Pumpkin Pie Smoothie that’s packed with vitamin A, potassium and fiber.

There you have it. All the must-haves for your Thanksgiving meal transformed into simple and delicious dishes for the rest of the weekend and beyond. 

Tell me. How do you use up your Thanksgiving leftovers? Is there a special dish you make with these “once-a-year” buys?




Lauralee Hensley says ...
Like your idea of stuffins. I will freeze left over turkey for casserole dishes later in the year. Like a layered casserole dish of Thousand Island Dressing, brown rice, drained sauerkraut, turkey, another layer of thousand island dressing, then swiss cheese.
11/08/2012 9:16:36 PM CST
Dixie Trelite says ...
These are simple, innovative uses for traditional left over items. I've shied away from cranberry sauce for years because everyone expects to see on a holiday table but only a few seem to partake. This year I'll serve the glazed chicken wings the day after while everyone watches the big games! Thanks Sharon!!!
11/09/2012 12:03:09 PM CST
patti says ...
Leftover cranberry sauce can be used to make turnovers / pastries. Mix cranberry sauce with cream cheese and ricotta plus some sugar. Use refrigerated pie crust, rolls (the kind in a can--roll flat first), or similar, spread cranberry-cheese mixture on half and fold the dough over. Cut slits in top and bake until golden. You can make a big one (strudel) or several smaller ones. Non Appetit had the recipe several years ago. Always a big hit.
11/09/2012 2:27:55 PM CST
Rona Baizer says ...
Yum! My kids are going to love the Stuffins! And the cranberry glazed chicken wings are a great idea! I think I'll make mine a little spicy. And love the cranberry mustard idea. It'll be perfect on a sandwich with my smoked turkey. All great ideas. Thanks for sharing!
11/09/2012 7:10:30 PM CST
Linda Benton says ...
I like to give our after -Thanksgiving turkey sandwiches a special twist. Using the freshest whole grained & nutty bread, I spread one slice of bread with low fat cream cheese, top it with a few thin slices of crisp apple, smear it with leftover whole berry cranberry sauce, add a piece of red leaf lettuce and the other slice of bread and Viola!-- A savory/sweet sandwich loaded with goodness.
11/14/2012 8:41:44 AM CST
Gwen says ...
We skip the canned cranberry sauce in favor of fresh cranberry-orange relish. It's so addictively good, and easy with a food processor. Just follow the instructions on a bag of cranberries, and make it a day or two ahead to save your sanity and let it mellow. I've always added a grated apple to the cranberries and orange. It smooths out the flavor and stretches the portions too. For my sons, it's not Thanksgiving without cranberry-orange relish. As for turkey leftovers, Turkey Tetrazzini is de rigeur at our house. The Joy of Cooking's recipe gets raves every time. It's a little rich, so I serve tossed salad alongside and a fresh fruit salad with apples, pears, oranges and a few raspberries for dessert. I feel healthier already. Linda, I'll have to try your sandwiches -- they sound great!
11/14/2012 10:45:01 PM CST
Jodi Fischer says ...
left over pumpkin puree? i like to mix 8oz with 1/2 gallon of softened ice cream and pour into a graham cracker crust (if you make your own just make sure to cook or chill the crust before pouring) can add cinnamon and ground ginger, brown sugar if you feel it needs it, can buy the crust and make it even easier). result -a pumpkin ice cream pie. it's lighter than pumpkin pie or cheese cake and so delish.
11/19/2012 11:04:52 PM CST
Mary says ...
These look good.
11/23/2012 8:44:02 AM CST