What to Do With All That Leftover Turkey

I always buy a much larger turkey than I need for Thanksgiving.  Given the amount of people who are eating at my house on Thanksgiving, this is quite a feat. I like having a lot of leftovers to make into other dishes. 

Of course I save the carcass and make it into turkey soup.  I think that is a requirement, right?  Then I cut up the remaining turkey and portion it out into freezer bags for meals, about 2 cups per bag is usually the perfect amount.  Sometimes I will freeze the carcass as well if we are experiencing turkey overload. 

Are you ready to expand your horizons beyond turkey soup, turkey salad, and turkey sandwiches?  Here are few recipes that I have discovered, and they are all keeping with my Tex-Mex Thanksgiving theme for this year.  And best of all?  They are all extremely easy.  After slaving over a big Thanksgiving meal it is nice to have some delicious meals that are made from the leftovers.  It also means that your Thanksgiving turkey is an extremely economical meal when it is stretched over several dishes.

Turkey Tortilla Soup
6-inch corn tortillas, cut in strips and fried up crispy
2  tablespoons cooking oil
1  cup purchased red or green salsa
2  14-ounces cans reduced sodium chicken broth
2  cups cubed cooked Butterball turkey (12 ounces)
1  large zucchini, coarsely chopped
Lime wedges (optional)
Sour cream and cilantro (optional)

In a large saucepan combine salsa and chicken broth and bring to boiling.

Add turkey and zucchini.

Reduce heat and allow to simmer until heated through.

Serve in bowls topped with tortilla strips, lime wedges, and cilantro.

Tex-Mex Tortilla Casserole
5 cups slightly crushed tortilla chips
4 cups cubed cooked Butterball turkey
2 16-ounce jars salsa
1 10-ounce package frozen whole kernel corn
1  cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup sour cream

Lightly grease a 13x9x2-inch baking dish.  Place 3 cups of the tortilla chips in bottom of dish. In a large bowl combine turkey, salsa, corn, sour cream, and spoon over tortilla chips.

Bake, uncovered, in a 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. Remove from oven.

Sprinkle with the remaining 2 cups tortilla chips and the cheese.

Bake, uncovered, for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, or until heated through.

Turkey With a Spicy Avocado Spread
2 fully ripened avocados, halved, pitted and peeled
1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon chipotle hot sauce, or more to taste
8 slices whole grain bread, toasted
8 ounces sliced Butterball turkey
1 large ripe tomato, sliced
1 cup alfalfa sprouts
In large bowl, mash together Avocados, lime juice, salt and chipotle sauce.

Spread Avocado mixture on 4 slices of toasted bread.
Top the bread slices with turkey, tomato and sprouts. Add extra slices of avocado if desired. 

Additional leftover recipes ideas are available here. Butterball turkey, the meal that keeps on giving even after the holiday.



  1. Susie Leatherbury
    Posted November 24, 2009 at 11:50 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Are all ButterBall Turkeys “self bastimg” turkeys while cooking? or do you need to apply basting materials?

  2. Posted November 27, 2009 at 10:55 am | Permalink | Reply

    They are self basting. No need to do anything to your turkey other than let it cook!

  3. Posted December 9, 2009 at 4:54 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I’m totally making the Tex Mex casserole tonight. Yum!

Post a Comment

%d bloggers like this: