simple recipes for left over turkey

Turkey is a bird that is traditionally eaten at Christmas and during Thanksgiving, however it is a bird that can be bought and eaten all year around. Turkeys are a lot bigger than other birds and they contain a lot of meat, which many people seem to forget. Most people buy the largest turkey they can find on the assumption they are going to run out, but in reality most people have enough leftover turkey to last a week.

Many people will use the leftover turkey in sandwiches or soups but there is so much more you can do with your leftover turkey. Leftover turkey recipes and dishes don’t have to be dull and boring and there are loads of different things you can make, including my favourite leftover turkey dishes detailed below.

Turkey and mushroom pie

It is not only chicken that goes very well with mushrooms, as leftover turkey does as well. Making a leftover turkey and mushroom pie is very simple and involves coating the leftover turkey with some tinned mushroom soup and thoroughly mixing. Condensed soup is thicker and goes further so make sure you use some nice and thick condensed mushroom soup as opposed to the watery mushroom soups available.

Once the leftover turkey is thoroughly coated in the condensed mushroom soup, put the mixture in to a pie dish and cover with a pastry topping. Alternatively, you may wish to make a leftover turkey and mushroom pie with a pie base and pie top, the decision is entirely up to you. Once the pie is made cook in an oven and serve with new potatoes and seasonal vegetables for a healthy and nutritious meal. An alternative to seasonal vegetables is to serve the leftover turkey and mushroom pie with chips, mushy peas and gravy.

Turkey and sweet corn pasta bake

Leftover turkey is a fantastic ingredient for a pasta bake dish and this leftover turkey and sweet corn variety is quick, easy and very tasty.

In order to make the leftover turkey and pasta bake you need to make a pint of white sauce, add a couple of handfuls of chopped leftover turkey meat and add a can of sweet corn and thoroughly mix together. Take 500g of dried pasta, I prefer to use penne but you can use whatever dried pasta you want, and put in a shallow oven proof dish. Pour the white sauce, leftover turkey and sweet corn over the pasta, season with salt and pepper to taste before covering it up and putting in a hot oven for twenty minutes. After twenty minutes remove the lid and cook for a further five to ten minutes until the pasta is cooked all the way through.

If you want you can sprinkle some breadcrumbs and cheese over the turkey and sweet corn pasta bake after twenty minutes and then cooking for a further ten minutes. This will give it a nice crispy topping that is very tasty.

Turkey and sweet corn pasta bake tastes great on its own, however small green side salad always makes it that much nicer.

Barbecue turkey pizza

Leftover turkey makes a great topping for homemade pizzas, which is another quick and easy meal. When making a turkey topped pizza you can use ready made pizza bases or you can make your own using a simple chapati mix. I prefer the chapati mix but, at the end of the day, it is down to personal preference.

Making a barbecue turkey pizza involves spreading some barbecue sauce over the pizza base, sprinkling on some chopped leftover turkey, sprinkle on some pieces of red onion, sprinkle on some chopped green pepper and then top off with cheese. Cook the barbecue turkey pizza in a hot oven for ten to fifteen minutes or until the cheese starts to bubble away nicely.

The barbecue turkey pizza is a versatile dish and once the barbecue sauce and turkey are on the pizza base you can add whatever ingredients you like. If you want a bit of spice try adding so jalapeno peppers, for a bit of colour add some canned sweet corn, you may wish to add some red or yellow pepper. The opportunities are endless and the barbecue turkey pizza allows you to run riot and let your creativity flow.

Turkey curry

I usually like to make curries from scratch since this allows me to add the herbs and spices I want in the quantities I want. When cooking a curry from scratch you need to use raw meat, so ready cooked turkey doesn’t really work. For this reason, when you make turkey curry using leftover turkey the answer is to use a ready made jar of curry sauce. There are many different types of ready made curry sauces, from mild to hot, and there is something to suit all tastes. It doesn’t matter whether your curry of choice is a korma, bhuna, madras, vindaloo or jalfrezi, you will find your favourite type of curry available in a ready made curry sauce variety in your local supermarket.

Making turkey curry using a ready-made sauce is quick, easy and foolproof. All you need to do is pour the sauce in to a pan, add the cooked turkey and warm up on the hob. If you want to add a bit more substance to the turkey curry try adding some boiled potatoes. Once the turkey curry is warm through serve it on a bed of rice, with a chapati.

Sweet and Sour turkey

Making a sweet and sour dish using ready cooked leftover turkey is best done with a jar of ready made sweet and sour sauce. Simply pour the sauce in a pan, add the leftover turkey and then warm through. Once the sweet and sour turkey is piping hot remove from the heat and serve on a bed of plain boiled rice or some egg noodles.

There are many other Chinese style ready-made jar sauces that go great with leftover turkey, and popular ones include black bean, lemon and scezhuan to name but a few. When using any of these sauces all you need to do is add the sauce to a pan, add some of the leftover turkey and then heat up on the hob before serving on a bed of rice or noodles.

In conclusion.......

There are loads of different turkey recipes and dishes you can make with your leftover turkey, so there are no excuses in simply putting it in sandwiches. Leftover turkey makes many quick and easy meals, which is great if you have had a stressful Christmas or Thanksgiving and spent hours in the kitchen slaving away over a hot stove. As you can see, jar sauces make the perfect accompaniment for leftover turkey so make sure you have plenty of different ready-made jar sauces in your food cupboard ready and waiting over the Christmas period.