Every year in November families across the United States and Canada celebrate Thanksgiving. This year, we all get to test out our very best Thanksgiving turkey recipes and our latest Thanksgiving leftover turkey recipes. Typically, the delicious centerpiece dish served on this festive holiday is baked or roasted. However, the savory bird can also be deep-fried, smoked, boiled, or put into a slow cooker.
Before many of us even walk away from the Thanksgiving dinner table, we’re already thinking about all of the leftover turkey recipes yet to come. With the rise of the internet and access to new recipes being easier than ever before, it can be extremely difficult to decide which leftover recipes to try out. The best strategy is to cook such a large Thanksgiving meal, that you have enough leftovers to try out at least a few different recipes or many more.
The Top 5 Most Common Thanksgiving Leftover
Thanksgiving could also be called the Leftover Holiday. There is no other holiday where so much extra food is accessible after the main course is consumed. In the list below we’ve included a brief rundown of the 5 most common Thanksgiving leftover items. We’re quite certain that at least 3 of the items in our list will match your Thanksgiving leftover situation exactly. Don’t be surprised if our top 5 list matches your main holiday leftovers exactly.
Turkey – This is the one item on the list that will not surprise you. With the average weight of a purchased Thanksgiving turkey being 15 pounds or more, it’s no wonder there is so much of the mouthwatering meat leftover after the holiday has concluded. It takes over 10 rotisserie chickens to match the weight of one Thanksgiving turkey, so that should paint an accurate visual of just how big a Thanksgiving turkey actually is.
Mashed Potatoes – With the price of potatoes being so low compared to other types of produce, it not uncommon for Mom to plop down a bowl of mashed potatoes on to the Thanksgiving table that looks like it could feed an army. You just know there is going to be at least half a dozen pounds of mashed potatoes leftover.
Oven Baked Rolls – We all probably hear the phrase “can you pass the butter” at least 50 times during a Thanksgiving meal. The holiday just wouldn’t be complete without a mountain of warm and freshly baked rolls sitting on the Thanksgiving table. These rolls are heavenly when used to make leftover Thanksgiving turkey sandwiches.
Stuffing – Why is there always so much Thanksgiving stuffing, you might ask? Well, considering the average cooked turkey weighs 15 pounds or more, the bird can hold a tremendous amount of delightful holiday stuffing. Every mom seems to have her own unique twist on this staple holiday recipe, with each recipe variant being equally delicious.
Gravy – It’s widely considered to be a holiday tragedy if the Thanksgiving meal is served with a shortage of gravy. For that reason, far more juice is usually made than anyone could ever consume. It isn’t that uncommon for there to be several different types of gravy served during the holiday meal. Don’t be surprised if you have gallons of the liquid deliciousness in your refrigerator after Thanksgiving has concluded.
The Best Way to Deal With All of Your Thanksgiving Leftovers
One of the most daunting Thanksgiving challenges, outside of eating all of the leftovers, is how to store and organize them after the holiday has come and gone. One of the best methods typically involves clearing off a large kitchen countertop surface, laying out all of your leftovers and food storage containers, and then starting from there. If you can visualize all of your leftovers in one location, then it is far easier to come up with an efficient storage plan that aims to conserve on space within your refrigerator.
The Most Common Thanksgiving Leftover Recipes
The most common Thanksgiving leftover recipes are extremely simple and do not require a written recipe to follow. Most Americans or Canadians simply slap some turkey and mayonnaise into a leftover bread roll for a lightning fast sandwich. It is not uncommon for people to mix cranberries, stuffing, or green bean casserole into a bowl of mashed potatoes. A lot of people combine any Thanksgiving leftovers into an oven dish, top it all off with some grated mozzarella or cheddar cheese, and then baking it in the oven for a super quick and easy Thanksgiving casserole dish. You really do not need to put much thought into creating quick and easy Thanksgiving leftover recipes if you are short on time, low on energy, or do not want to use a complicated recipe.
Delicious Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Pot Pie Recipe
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 Hour
Special Cooking Tool: ThermoPro TP-21 Digital Wireless Remote Cooking Thermometer
- 1 Premade 10 Inch Double Crust Pie Pastry
- 1/2 Cup of 2 Percent Milk
- 3 Tablespoons of All-purpose Baking Flour
- 4 Tablespoons of Salted Butter
- 1 1/2 Cups of Cubed Cooked Turkey
- 1 Small Minced White Onion
- 2 Large Chopped Celery Stalks
- 2 Large Peeled and Chopped Carrots
- 3 Large Peeled and Cubed Potatoes
- 3 Tablespoons of Dried Parsley
- 1 Teaspoon of Dried Oregano
- 1/2 Teaspoon of Sea Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon of Ground Black Pepper
- 2 Chicken Bouillon Cubes
- 2 Cups of Mineral Water
- For the first step in this recipe, you will need to set up your ThermoPro TP-21 digital thermometer to temp the oven while preheating your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit or 220 degrees Celsius because the oven temperature is not always as accurate as you think.
- Take out your premade pie crust and press the bottom layer into a 10-inch pie pan. Set it aside when you are done.
- Take out a large cooking skillet and melt two tablespoons of butter into it. Once the butter has melted, add in the onions, carrots, celery, oregano, parsley, salt, and pepper. Cook these ingredients until they are soft and tender. Next, stir in the chicken bouillon cubes and water. Lastly, bring the mixture to a boil and then add in the potatoes and let them cook until they are tender.
- Using a new medium-size saucepan, melt the remaining two tablespoons of butter. Add in the turkey and all-purpose flour and let them cook. Next, add in the milk and let it simmer.
- Combine both saucepan mixtures and let them cook until the ingredients have thickened. Once that is achieved, let the mixture cool for 5-10 minutes then pour it into the shell lined pie pan. Add the top pie shell layer, joining the two shell pieces by fluting the edges together. Don’t forget to make 4-5 cuts into the top pie crust layer to let the excess steam out.
- Bake the turkey pot pie in the oven for 15 minutes at the preheat temperature. Next, reduce the temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit or 175 degrees Celsius and bake the pot pie for an additional 20 minutes, or until the outer pie crust is a golden brown color.
- Take the delicious and freshly baked pot pie out of the oven and let it cool for 10 minutes before serving it. This dish goes great with a side of mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberries, and green bean casserole, all common Thanksgiving leftovers that you are guaranteed to have sitting in your refrigerator.
Don’t Be Afraid to Try New Thanksgiving Leftover Recipes
If you have the free time, then it is a really fun and worthwhile endeavor to try out new and delicious Thanksgiving leftover recipes. There are thousands of mouthwatering recipes out there across the internet that are very easy to access and create. While it is great to recreate all of your tried and true recipes from years past, it is most important to realize that you cannot learn or discover new family favorites if you only stick to creating the same age-old recipes that you know. So don’t be afraid to venture out off the beaten path to try something new this year.