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What to Make With Leftover Mashed Potatoes, Turkey & Stuffing

Oct 4, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Too many leftovers to handle? Scrap that tired cold turkey sandwich and turn to one of our creative ideas for transforming yesterday's leftovers into delicious new meals.

1.  Holiday cobb-Inspired Turkey Salad
Mix chopped turkey with dried cranberries, walnuts, chopped celery and a little minced red onion. If you like blue cheese, crumble some in. Stir in some mayonnaise and serve on toasted brioche or leftover rolls from Thanksgiving dinner.
 
2. Stuffing Casserole
Butter a baking dish and line it with leftover stuffing that has been mixed with packaged french-fried onions, pressing the stuffing up the sides as best you can to make a little stuffing “pie shell.” In a bowl, mix together a can of cream of mushroom soup, 3/4 cup milk, frozen peas (or leftover green beans) and chopped turkey. Pour mixture into stuffing shell and sprinkle some cheese over the top. Bake at 350 F for 30 minutes, or until the filling is set and the top is golden and bubbly.
 
3. Turkey Tacos
Saute a chopped onion in olive oil until translucent. Add minced garlic and saute for 1 minute more. Stir in shredded leftover turkey, 1 cup salsa and 1/3 cup water, and cook over low heat until the mixture looks soft and stew-like (about 15 minutes). Sprinkle with chopped cilantro, then fill taco shells with the mixture and top with shredded lettuce, cheese and sour cream.
 
4. Asian-Style Turkey Lettuce Wraps
Mix together equal amounts of hoisin sauce and barbecue sauce (use enough to generously coat the amount of turkey you have). Saute minced garlic and ginger in sesame oil for 1 minute, then stir in the hoisin mixture. Mix in finely chopped leftover turkey and minced scallions, and simmer for about 10 minutes. Serve with romaine lettuce leaves for wrapping up the mixture.
 
5. Turkey-ghetti
Saute chopped onions and green peppers in olive oil until softened. Add minced garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add finely chopped leftover turkey, spaghetti sauce and a splash or three of red wine, then cover and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Toss with cooked spaghetti and Parmesan cheese.
 
6. Mashed Potato Gratin
Saute onions, shallots or garlic (or all three) until soft. Blend with leftover mashed potatoes, minced leftover ham, a tablespoon or two of mustard and a small amount of milk or cream (just enough to make the potatoes soft again). Fill a buttered baking dish with the mixture and sprinkle some shredded cheese on top. Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake at 300 F until heated through (about 15 minutes).
 
7. Turkey Tortilla Soup
Slice corn tortillas into thin strips and cook in hot oil until crisp; remove to paper towels to drain. In a large pot, combine 32 ounces of chicken broth, 1 cup salsa (or stewed tomatoes) and a chopped zucchini. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add chopped leftover turkey and heat through. Serve soup topped with your fried tortilla strips, sour cream and a splash of fresh lime juice.
 
8. Festive Fried Rice
Cook enough rice for four people and let it cool. In the largest skillet you have, saute chopped onions, minced garlic and chopped baocn (optional) in olive oil for 4 to 5 minutes. Add chopped leftover turkey, diced apple and sliced scallions. Mix in a generous helping of curry powder and cook until everything is heated through. Thoroughly mix in the cooked rice and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with some more fresh scallions before serving.
 
9. Cranberry Sauce Fudge Sundaes
In a small saucepan, mix cranberry sauce with a few tablespoons of Gran Marnier and simmer over low heat for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, warm up your favorite hot fudge sauce in a separate saucepan (or in the microwave). Scoop vanilla ice cream into bowls and drizzle the two sauces over the top. You might never look at cranberry sauce the same way again.
 
10. Green Bean Casserole Pasta
Saute generous amounts of chopped garlic and a pinch of red pepper flakes in olive oil. When the garlic is soft, toss in shrimp and cook until just pink. Add leftover green bean casserole and 1/2 cup white wine (or water) and let bubble for 3 to 4 minutes, or until heated through. Toss with hot penne or fusilli pasta.
 
11. Power Breakfast
Heat butter until it foams, then add thick slices of cold leftover stuffing and fry until crispy on both sides. Remove stuffing slices to a plate and top with a sunny-side up egg. Drizzle with reheated gravy. Shop without fear of ever getting hungry.
 
12. Simple Breakfast for Tired Chefs
Toast leftover corn bread and slather on butter and cranberry sauce.
 
13. Stuffing and Cheese Strata
Saute mushrooms in a little bit of butter until they have released most of their liquid and have started to brown. Add minced garlic and a couple handfuls of spinach and cook, stirring, until spinach is wilted; remove to a large bowl. In a separate bowl, beat together 2 cups whole milk and 3 eggs to make a custard; season with salt and pepper. Add crumbled leftover stuffing to the mushroom-spinach mixture, then pour into the custard. Stir in handfuls of grated cheese—a nutty cheese like Gruyere works well here—before pouring the mixture into a buttered casserole dish. Bake at 350 F for 30 to 40 minutes, or until strata is puffed and golden.
 
14. Ginger and Chocolate Bread Pudding
Cut leftover bread (you need about 1 pound) into 1-inch cubes. Toss the bread with 8 tablespoons melted butter and 1 cup chocolate chips; transfer to a baking dish. Make a custard by mixing together 2 1/2 cups half-and-half, 1 cup sugar, 6 large eggs, 4 large egg yolks, 2 tablespoons vanilla and 1 tablespoon grated ginger. Pour custard over the bread mixture and let soak for 30 minutes. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons brown sugar over the top and bake at 350 F for 1 hour.
 
15. Holiday Ole 9-Layer Dip
In a small bowl, mix one 14.5-ozcan of drained black beans with the juice of half a lime, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, a can of drained green chiles and a pinch of salt. In another small bowl, mix 1 cup sour cream with 1/2 cup mayonnaise. In the bottom of a glass pie plate or casserole, create a thin layer of leftover stuffing. Top that with a layer of minced leftover turkey, then layers of the bean mixture and sour cream mixture. Top this with a layer of guacamole, then a layer of salsa (drained if necessary). Sprinkle with Monterey Jack cheese and thinly sliced scallions and refrigerate until ready to serve.
 
16. Salmon Croquettes With Leftover Mash
In a medium bowl, mix together equal parts leftover mashed potatoes and drained canned salmon, 1 egg, some minced celery, thinly sliced scallions, 1 or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill and 1 teaspoon garlic powder. Form mixture into golf-ball-size balls, then flatten into patties. Coat the patties with breadcrumbs, then pan-fry them in canola oil until golden and crispy on both sides.
 
17. Stuffing Stuffed Squash
Pierce a whole acorn squash in a few places with a sharp knife, then cook on high in the microwave for 4 minutes. Turn over and cook for another 4 minutes. Carefully cut the squash in half and remove seeds and strings. Fill the cavity with a mixture of leftover stuffing, crumbled cooked sausage, a pinch of red pepper flakes, some minced garlic and 2 to 3 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese. Brush exposed squash flesh with melted butter, then bake on a cookie sheet at 350 F for 25 to 30 minutes.
 
18. Candied Yam Bread
This is a great way to use up that extra just-in-case can of candied yams you bought. Pour a 14-ounce can of candied yams into a medium bowl and blend with 4 eggs, 1 1/4 cup sugar and 1 1/2 cups canola oil until smooth. In a separate bowl, sift together 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon salt and 2 teaspoons each of baking soda and baking powder. Gradually blend the flour mixture into the wet ingredients. If you like, add a handful of chopped pecans or diced crystallized ginger. Pour batter into a well-greased and floured Bundt pan and bake at 350 F for 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

19. Eggs Benedict Stuffing Style
Fry stuffing in a frying pan, lightly oiled or with a little butter. Pat into a mound. Top with turkey and a poached egg. Hollandaise sauce and crumbled bacon optional.

20. Mashed Potato Patties
leftover mased potatoes with one egg, one tablespoon fo flour, some Sriracha or hot sauce, any fresh herbs, finely grated cheese or goat cheese, three fienly chopped green onions, and bacon, if desired. Heat 1 to 2 tablespoons of butter or vegetable oil over medium heat. When heat, fry each patty for three minutes per side or until nicely browned.

21. Mashed Potato Croquettes
Mix mashed potatoes with some herbs, form patties, roll in dipped egg yolk, then roll gently through a dish of Panko or Italian bread crumbs. Fry over medium heat until nicely browned.