Feast again with delicious recipes for leftover turkey

By Jo Ellen Helmlinger

Tired of turkey sandwiches and reheated leftovers? Here are some recipes using cooked turkey that make the day after the holiday seem like a second feast.

Turkey Cranberry Encore Salad

From Carnation Evaporated Milk

Makes 8 servings



2/3 cup evaporated milk

½ cup jellied or whole-berry cranberry sauce

¼ cup bottled Italian salad dressing


1 (10-ounce) bag mixed salad greens

2 cups cubed, cooked turkey

½ cup crumbled blue cheese

1/3 cup sweetened, dried cranberries

½ cup chopped, toasted walnuts


  1. For the Dressing: In a jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine evaporated milk, cranberry sauce and Italian salad dressing; cover jar with lid and shake for 1 to 2 minutes or until well blended.  You also may use a stick blender and a four-cup glass measure to combine ingredients. Dressing can be made 2 days in advance and refrigerated. Shake well before using.
  2. For the salad: In a large bowl, toss greens, turkey, blue cheese and ¾ cup salad dressing. Sprinkle with cranberries and walnuts. Serve immediately with additional dressing.


Turkey Tacos

Makes 6 servings


12 taco shells

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 cup chopped onion

1 garlic clove, chopped

2 cups cubed or shredded cooked turkey

1teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon oregano

Salt and ground black pepper, to taste

1½ cups shredded Mexican or taco cheese blend

Bottled taco sauce, chopped tomatoes, shredded lettuce, prepared guacamole

or sour cream, for toppings


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place taco shells in 13×9-inch baking dish. Bake for 5 minutes to crisp tacos.
  2. In a large skillet, cook onion in oil until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add turkey, cumin, oregano and salt and pepper, to taste. Cook until heated through.
  3. Fill shells about half full with turkey mixture. Add cheese, taco sauce, lettuce and other toppings, as desired.


Turkey, Leek and Cheese Soup

Makes 4 servings


1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 cup sliced leeks, white parts and tender green parts only

1 cup chopped onion

8 ounces sliced, fresh mushrooms

2 garlic cloves, minced

4 cups turkey or chicken broth or stock

1 cup sliced carrots

1 cup red-skin potatoes, unpeeled and cut into cubes

½ cup long-grain rice, uncooked

1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

¾ cup evaporated milk

2 cups cubed, cooked turkey

1 cup sharp cheddar cheese

Salt and pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon dry sherry, optional

Fresh chopped parsley, optional


  1. In a large Dutch oven, over medium heat, cook leeks and onions until tender but not brown, about 3 minutes. Add mushrooms; cook until mushrooms lightly browned. Add garlic; cook for 30 seconds.
  2. Add broth, carrots, potatoes, rice and thyme. Turn up heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until vegetables are tender 20 to 25 minutes.
  3. Add turkey, milk, cheese, salt and pepper, and sherry, if desired. Cook until cheese melts and turkey is heated through. Do not boil. Sprinkle with fresh parsley, if desired.


Hot Turkey Salad

Makes 12 servings


1 cup coarsely crushed potato chips

2/3 cup finely chopped almonds

6 cups cubed, cooked turkey

3 cups chopped celery

1 (10¾ ounce) can cream of chicken soup

2 cups shredded Italian cheese blend or mozzarella cheese

2 (8-ounce) cartons dairy sour cream

¼ cup chopped onion

1 teaspoon dried basil

4 hard-cooked eggs, chopped


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a small bowl, combine potato chips and almonds; set aside
  3. In a very large bowl, combine turkey, celery, soup, cheeses, sour cream, onion and thyme or basil. Gently fold in hard-cooked eggs. Transfer to a 13-by9-inch baking dish or 3-quart casserole. Sprinkle evenly with potato chip mixture.
  4. Bake uncovered, for 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.


Turkey White Bean Chili

Makes 6 servings


1 cup chopped onion

1 tablespoon vegetable cooking oil

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

2 cups cubed, cooked turkey

2 (15.5-ounce) cans cannellini beans or garbanzo beans or 1 can of each,

drained and rinsed

3 cups turkey or chicken stock or broth

Dash of hot pepper sauce, ground cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes, to


Chopped fresh Italian parsley, diced red and green bell pepper, chopped

fresh, chives or basil, shredded Parmesan cheese for garnish, optional


In a 4-quart pot, over medium heat, cook the onion in oil until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the turkey and seasoning. Cook and stir until turkey is coated with seasoning. Add the beans, stock and pepper sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer for 10 minutes. Serve chili with garnishes, as desired.


Turkey Broccoli Casserole

From Crazy for Casseroles by James Villas

Makes 6 to 8 servings


¼ cup butter or margarine

¼ cup all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon Dijon mustard

Salt and pepper, to taste

3½ cups milk

½ pound sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

8 ounces medium-wide egg noodles, cooked according to package directions

and drained

4 cups cubed cooked turkey

1 (10-ounce) package frozen broccoli florets, cooked according to package

directions and drained or 2 cups fresh florets cooked tender-crisp

½ cup coarsely chopped smoked almonds


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 2-quart casserole; set aside.
  2. In a medium-size, heavy saucepan, melt butter over moderate heat. Add flour, mustard, and salt and pepper. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly, until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat; stir in cheese until melted. Set sauce aside.
  3. Arranged cooked noodles in prepared casserole. Top with turkey then broccoli. Pour the sauce evenly over the layers; sprinkle almonds over the top.
  4. Bake until bubbly, about 30 minutes.
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