I don’t understand why some people want to talk trash about leftover turkey. Don’t think leftovers, think planned overs. Cooked Thanksgiving turkey doesn’t have to taste anything like the first time you have it on Thanksgiving. There are thousands of possibilities. If you were smart and called the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line® (1-800-BUTTERBALL), your leftover turkey is tender and delicious and just needs to be stored properly before it gets turned into something marvelous like Butterball’s Four Cheese Turkey Mac & Cheese.
What, that doesn’t float your boat?
How about choosing from any of these wonderful ideas on Butterball’s Leftovers Pinterest board. Remember, turkey is the perfect protein to include. Don’t get caught up in the whole casserole craze, although sometimes those do have a certain comfort food appeal.
Freezing your leftovers is a great way to break up what could be a turkey day leftover glut, especially if you went all out and roasted a large turkey with lots of sides for a small family.
Cooked turkey will freeze best if you can remove a lot of the air – which is the enemy of frozen food. This is what makes vacuum sealers so attractive. I tend to cook extra turkeys throughout November, especially when they go on sale and freeze the meat to use in ideas like these I’ve put together on my Pinterest board throughout the winter or you can visit Butterball’s Leftovers Pinterest board. Keep in mind you don’t want to thaw and recook any food too many times, the quality will degrade.
Here are few Thanksgiving Day leftover guidelines to keep you on the right track:
*Turkey should be frozen or used within 2 – 6 days.
*Frozen, cooked turkey should be used within 2 months and should be cooked thoroughly, immediately after thawing.
*If you have gravy or leftover mashed potatoes they should be used within 1 – 2 days after Thanksgiving.
*Leftover gravy is an excellent addition to Mustgo Soup. Mashed potatoes are, too. Both thicken and add flavor.
*Cranberry sauce can be stirred into yogurt, served over ice cream, or it makes a nice accompaniment to pork chops, ham, chicken or fish. It should be used within 7 days (the sugar acts as a preservative.)