By Meghen Jones
Thanksgiving is a holiday revered by many, and how can it not be with its endless, Macy Thanksgiving Parade-sized spread of your favorite dishes? You know, the ones you dream about at night after a long day stuck in lectures. Well, now that it’s come and gone, you would assume recovery time from your tryptophan overdose would be a given. But, no, instead, there’s Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa headed straight your way.
But, who can complain? Endless amounts of juicy turkey or ham, latkes, and collard greens set out on the dinner table can leave you hankering for even more of this food heaven. Let’s be honest, your mouth is probably watering just thinking about the Thanksgiving dinner you just had— despite the residual food coma you may be experiencing right now.
But, once the holiday season finally winds down, you’ll most likely have an excess of food leftovers that you have no idea what to do with—and even though holiday food is completely and utterly delicious, no one wants to be stuck eating the same meal multiple days in a row. You know just as well as we do, not even college students are into that. Luckily enough for you, uCribs has compiled recipes that will transform all of your holiday leftovers into brand-new, never-before-tasted dishes!
French Toast Stuffed with Cranberry Cream Cheese
If there’s one thing French toast is, it’s a breakfast staple. Whether you choose to top it with fruit, powdered sugar, or authentic maple syrup, it’s a dish that will have you coming back time and time again. Speaking of a variety of French toast toppings, there’s nothing quite as delicious as stuffed French toast, and what better way to put that leftover cranberry sauce to good use?
Yeah, that’s right—we have a recipe for French toast stuffed with cranberry cream cheese up our sleeve, and it’s so delicious that you may be wondering why we stuck it up our sleeve to begin with. Get it? Well, whether you enjoy a good joke or not, this recipe makes for a sweet yet satisfying post-holiday treat that you and your family members are sure to gobble right up. Hold up, guys… Thanksgiving was last week, so no more Turkey puns!
For French Toast:
8 slices of French bread
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Zest of one orange
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
Butter for the pan
4-ounce cream cheese, room temperature
4 tablespoons powdered sugar
4 tablespoons cranberry sauce
No matter how many family members, friends, and neighbors are invited to your annual feast, there’s always more than enough turkey leftover the day after Thanksgiving and beyond. But, after two or three rounds of the same line-up, you need other ways to entice yourself to finish what you started and give the almighty bird its due diligence.
Transform that carved turkey into savory turkey tostadas that put the perfect Mexican spin on your traditionally American Thanksgiving meal. With fresh cilantro, crumbled queso fresco, and chunky salsa, this recipe really hits the spot. Not to mention, once you top it off with spicy cranberry-chipotle sauce, we bet you’ll be wishing for holiday leftovers year-round.
4 (8-inch) whole-wheat tortillas
1 (16-ounce) can fat-free refried black beans
3/4 cup bottled chunky salsa, divided
1 1/2 cups shredded cooked turkey
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled queso fresco
1 cup chopped tomato
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Savory Leftover Hand Pies
We’re all for the quintessential post-holiday turkey sandwich, but we’d rather end this list with a bang. If you’d really like to impress your MasterChef-obsessed roomies, whip up some savory, Food Network-worthy hand pies with your leftover haul. Never had a hand pie that wasn’t sweet? Allow us to rock your world with a treat that combines bakery-style crust, seasoned-to-perfection turkey, and all the homestyle sides you can handle.
This recipe can be customized with just about anything and puts to good use the copious amounts of turkey and cranberry sauce you somehow got tricked into bringing home. Your grandmother just seemed super insistent this year in hopes to fatten you up by Valentine’s Day. But, don’t fret—she just realizes that you need to put some meat on those bones after months of impromptu ramen noodle dinners.
One 14.1-ounce package store-bought pie crust
All-purpose flour, for dusting
1/4 cup leftover mashed potatoes, sweet or traditional
1/2 cup leftover stuffing
1/2 cup leftover turkey, cut into bite-size pieces
1/4 cup leftover cranberry sauce, plus more for dipping
1 teaspoon milk
Optional: Leftover gravy, for dipping
You will also need: Parchment paper, a 4 1/2 inch round biscuit cutter, and a rolling pin. (Not quite to your MasterChef status just yet? Substitute the rim of a large mug or drinking glass for the biscuit cutter and a bottle or can of soup for the rolling pin.)