Easy Recipes Using Holiday Leftovers

Got leftovers from Thanksgiving or Christmas? Turn them into something totally different using the easy ideas below. Free-style them your way – YOU DECIDE if you want to add more or less of each of the ingredients, depending on your personal taste. Convert some of the most traditional leftovers into something new:

CRANBERRY WALNUT SPREAD: Mix leftover cranberry sauce and finely chopped (or ground) walnuts into soft goat cheese or whipped cream cheese for a great snack on your favorite crackers.

SWEET POTATO BRUNCH EGGS: Using leftover mashed sweet potatoes or sweet potato casserole (without marshmallows), spoon mounds of sweet potatoes in a greased frying pan. Make an indentation in each mound. Heat the sweet potato mounds on low heat until they are heated through, then break an egg into each mound. Spread fresh spinach leaves around the eggs. Cover and heat (LOW) until the eggs are done the way you like them and spinach is wilted.

OPEN FACE TURKEY SANDWICH: Go OLD SCHOOL! There’s nothing like a “basic” open face turkey sandwich. Heat thick slices of turkey in leftover gravy. Toast a thick piece of bread such as Texas Toast or Sourdough and pour the turkey and gravy over the toast.

TURKEY AVOCADO SANDWICH: Mash an avocado. Spread approx. half of it it over a thick piece of your favorite toasted sandwich bread. Add slices of turkey and top with 2 or 3 slices of crispy bacon. OPTIONAL: Mayo and/or a slice of Munster or other cheese.

TURKEY PATE: mince leftover turkey and mix with whipped cream cheese (half turkey, half cream cheese), add a few tablespoons of crushed walnuts and a dash or 2 of Worcester sauce, salt/pepper. OPTIONAL: Add minced red onion. Serve with crackers or crusty bread.

CRANBERRY SMOOTHIE: Use leftover home-made cranberry sauce for a delicious smoothie. Combine a few heaping tablespoons of cranberry sauce with a scoop vanilla ice-cream, add approx. 1/3 to 1/2 cup milk. Optional: Add a tablespoon or 2 of plain or vanilla yogurt and/or add a few fresh orange or mandarin slices. BLEND…DONE!

CRANBERRY TOPPING: Home-made cranberry sauce is great over French Vanilla (or plain Vanilla) ice-cream. OPTIONAL: Add chopped walnuts and/or diced orange or mandarin slices.

This topping is also good over a plain pound or bundt cake or a plain white cake.

TURKEY WILD RICE SOUP: Cook a box of your favorite wild rice (such as Uncle Ben’s Wild Rice) per the instructions. When rice is done, add approx. 1 can of chicken broth and ½ cup of water (add more or less broth/water to get it to the thickness you prefer), then add shredded pieces of leftover cooked turkey. Simmer for approx. 10 or 15 minutes on LOW heat. Serve. OPTIONAL: Add fresh, lightly sauteed mushrooms and/or onions to the soup.

GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE BREAKFAST EGGS: In a frying pan (coated with cooking spray or lightly buttered) place several mounds of leftover green bean casserole. Flatten them to approx. a small pancake size. Heat the flattened casserole on low heat for a few minutes until it is heated through. Then top each pancake with a freshly cracked egg. Put a lid over the pan and cook the eggs until over easy or anyway you like them. SERVE.

HEALTHY SNACK BOWL (see photo): Take a festive snack bowl and fill with whole nuts and small mandarin oranges. Top with a holiday critter or Santa. Perfect to set on your coffee table in front of the TV so family members reach for a healthy snack. DON’T FORGET THE NUT CRACKER (and a small bowl to discard the shells/rinds).


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