Don’t let your holiday leftovers go to waste

Most leftovers are safe to eat for about three to four days, and with an abundance of them following holiday celebrations there are ways to best re-purpose your meals.

First off, make sure to practice food safety and refrigerate leftovers promptly. They should not sit out of the refrigerator for more than two hours.

Now, if your leftovers stand within all those guidelines here are some great ways to re-purpose them.

Leftover meat

  • Make a stir fry, use leftover vegetables or frozen vegetables, soy sauce, broth and sesame oil
  • Soup – Use 2 cups of leftover chopped meat, 2-4 cups vegetables, 4 cups of broth and one can of desired beans.  Season with additional spices as desired.  Bring to boil, then simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  • Salads – Top green leafy vegetables with leftover turkey, ham or beef.  Use leftover cranberry sauce to make a vinaigrette.  See recipe at the bottom.

Leftover mashed white or sweet potatoes

  • Potato pancakes – just mix 2 cups with 2 eggs, 2 Tbsp. of flour 1/2 cup chopped green onion or spinach, 1/2 tsp each – salt and pepper.  Heat large skillet over medium-high, add oil and cook 3-4 minute per side, flip and cook an additional 3-5 minutes.  Serve.

Cranberry Sauce – Freeze in ice cube trays to use for the following uses as needed:

  • Add to oatmeal
  • Add to smoothies
  • Add to Greek yogurt

Pumpkin Pie

Make a pumpkin pie smoothie using 1/2 cup filling, 1 scoop protein powder, 1/4 frozen banana and 1/2 cup – 1 cup desired milk, or milk alternative.  Blend and enjoy!

Turkey Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette
Serves: 4-6

  • 1 large head green leafy lettuce, spinach or kale
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped, fully cooked turkey
  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 pear, thinly sliced
  • 4 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
  • Cranberry Vinaigrette:
  • 1 cup prepared cranberry sauce (homemade or canned)
  • 5 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper as desired

Divide the leafy greens onto four to six plates.  Divide the turkey, onion, cheese and walnuts onto the plates.  To prepare the dressing whisk the cranberry sauce and vinegar in a medium bowl.  Slowly whisk in the olive oil until well combined.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Drizzle over the prepared salad.  Enjoy! Note: You will have extra dressing, it will keep for 5 days in the fridge.

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