Why We Love Leftover Turkey

Why We Love Leftover Turkey Blog Header

Warning: This list of recipes might cause your mind to be blown away with all the innovative ways to cook leftover turkey. Other things that may happen: a slight obsession with turkey might start, your mouth might water throughout the day as you think about your leftovers and you might find yourself so comfortable and full that you fall into a deep food coma. If you can live with all these symptoms, use (and reuse) these recipes every time you have some of that leftover bird. Here are five reasons we love leftover turkey:

1. Turkey Cranberry Sandwich


Turkey sandwiches are the most traditional of the leftover turkey dishes. They are easy to make and there’s no question about how delicious they are. This recipe is all those things – and more! You probably already have the cranberry sauce, cheese, bacon and red onions in your kitchen – all you need is to grab some of that leftover turkey meat. Gather all these ingredients together for this bold and hearty sandwich. Chop up the red onions and mix them in with the cranberry sauce. Grab two slices of your favorite bread and slather the mixture onto one slice, and mayonnaise onto the other. Stack up all the turkey, bacon, and cheese you want onto the sandwich and heat it up on a skillet or grill pan. Serve the sandwich once the cheese is perfectly melted and the bread is golden and crispy. This recipe will give you the most perfect turkey sandwich there ever was!

For the full recipe, visit here.

2. Turkey Hash with Sunny-Side Up Eggs


This dish is perfect for the morning following your turkey feast or any morning after. It’s also completely guilt free because it has less calories, fat, and sodium than traditional hash without losing any flavor. For this plate, you’ll need some unused peppers and potatoes from your kitchen. To be exact, you’ll need one pound of red potatoes, one small yellow onion, three cloves of garlic, and one red bell pepper. Don’t forget the turkey! All these ingredients come together beautifully from pan to plate. Top the turkey hash off with a fried egg and let breakfast begin!

Get the exact ingredients and directions here.

3. Turkey Pasta Bake


Invite family. Invite friends. Heck, invite the mailman because you’re going to want everyone to know about this delicious recipe! It’s a great way to use the mushrooms, cheese, and chicken broth in your fridge – even an unfinished bottle of white wine can be repurposed into this dish! Open up a bag of penne pasta and cook it per the instructions on the bag. Cook all the vegetables together in one pan. Add flour and white wine into the mix and stir occasionally. Make the sauce and add it into the bake. Serve in a casserole dish and your guests won’t believe that it’s your leftover turkey in this stunning pasta dish.

Click here to get specific instructions and measurements.

4. Turkey Cheese Dip


A perfect turkey twist to the classic cheese dip! This dip is decadent, perfect for cheese lovers, a great way to get rid leftovers…AND will be the most valuable snack at your next tailgate party as well. Football and turkey season all at once? Now that’s our favorite season – no doubt! For this recipe, you’ll need all the cheese, specifically colby-jack, parmesan, and monterey jack if you have it. You’ll also need garlic, an onion, mayonnaise, a round loaf of sourdough bread, and turkey. To get started, preheat the oven to 350F while you mix the cheese, onion, garlic, mayonnaise, and turkey into a bowl. Cut the top off the sourdough loaf and tear out the inside of the bread to form a bowl. Pour in all the mixed ingredients into your bread bowl and put it in the oven for 20 minutes. The cheese should have melted and turned a delicious golden color. Use the extra pieces of bread as bite-size pieces to dip into the cheese. Put this dish out for your next party and try to enjoy the game as much as you’ll be enjoying the dip.

Click here for full instructions.  

5. BBQ Turkey Pizza


We’re breaking all the rules with this one! But sometimes being a rebel works – especially if it results in something as appetizing as this pizza. Whether you have a lot or a little turkey left, this pizza will work regardless. The main ingredient of this delectable plate is the BBQ sauce. You will also need dough (homemade or store bought), cooked turkey pieces, gouda cheese (or whatever your favorite cheese is), salt, pepper, and olive oil. The rest is fun and easy! Lather your pizza dough with BBQ sauce then throw on all the toppings you want. Don’t forget the turkey! Bake it in the oven and serve to all the empty stomachs in your home. You’ll never want BBQ pizza with anything else after tasting this dish.

Find out how to make your own dough and the precise measurements here.

So don’t throw out that leftover Thanksgiving food; use these recipes instead and you might even find yourself wishing for more leftovers. A great meal can bring happiness to everyone and keep the holiday season going. Have fun getting creative with your leftover turkey.

Happy holidays and happy eating!


Kid Looks at Turkey at Thanksgiving Dinner

About Big R

Bill and Pat Crabtree originated the Illinois Big R Stores in 1964 opening the first store in Watseka, Illinois. To date 20 stores have been opened in Illinois and Indiana; 2 stores in Ohio and 1 store in Wisconsin and we are still proud to be family-owned and operated. Our 12 Illinois stores are located in Watseka, Gibson City, Danville, Tilton, Pontiac, Morris, Pekin, Washington, Rochelle, Homer Glen, Streator and McHenry. Our 8 Indiana stores are located in Warsaw, 2 locations in Elkhart, Rochester, Wabash, Crawfordsville, Michigan City, and Marion. Our 2 stores in Ohio are located in Lima and Findlay. And 1 location in Wisconsin in Burlington. The offices and warehouses for Big R remain in Watseka, IL. Farm and Ranch store owners in the western states started the Big R brand name; they chose the name "Big R" to convey the "Ranch" identity. The Big R group is now comprised of 12 independent owners with store locations throughout the U.S. They all are members of Mid-States Distributing Company of St. Paul, MN. The Mid-States Coop has over 600 stores throughout the United States and Canada.