Leftover Turkey Recipes to Get Excited About


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Have a bunch of leftover turkey? Bring it to life in a variety of new and exciting recipes, including hearty fall salads, casseroles, and yes – even a breakfast hash!

Turkey cranberry hash in a pan.

Thanksgiving is over and that storage container of perfectly carved leftover turkey is waiting to be gobbled up. But after a night of heavy eating, you’re probably craving something different…maybe even lighter. So ditch the idea of reheating your previous Thanksgiving dinner plate as is, and opt for something far more exciting.

Treat you leftover turkey like a simple meal prep ingredient and layer it onto a grain bowl with roasted butternut squash, avocado, and a dollop of cranberry sauce. Swap it for chicken in a cozy winter vegetable soup. Or dice up all your leftovers and bake them into a casserole with wild rice. There are so many un-boring things you can make with turkey leftovers!

Best Leftover Turkey Recipes

The secret to transforming leftover turkey into exciting new meals is a little creativity with flavor, sauces, and texture combinations. First, check to see what you have in your pantry, fridge, and freezer. The feel free to add in chopped nuts or seeds to a salad, or use up that frozen bag of peas in a casserole.

Here’s a few ideas to get you started! And I’ll continue to add to this list every year. So be sure to bookmark this page for your next Thanksgiving menu.

Turkey cobb salad in a large bowl on a table next to a spoon.

Turkey Cobb Salad

This harvest turkey Cobb salad puts a tasty seasonal spin on the classic Cobb salad with roasted turkey, butternut squash, and cranberries. Those ingredients join the classic ingredients like bacon and boiled eggs to create a salad that’s protein-packed, and hearty.

A turkey casserole dish on a table with a spoon in it.

Lighter Turkey Casserole

What better way to make use of leftovers than a comforting turkey casserole? But don’t worry, this one won’t weigh you down. It’s wonderfully light and fluffy with wild rice, frozen peas and a quick mushroom gravy sauce.

Turkey meatballs in a pan with maple mustard sauce with a spoon.

Turkey Meatballs

If you’ve got a meat grinder at home, take some turkey meat, grind it up, then make these delicious turkey meatballs. The best part? The maple mustard sauce, of course!

A plate of turkey cranberry hash with poached egg next to saute pan.

Turkey Cranberry Hash

Yes, you can use those turkey leftovers for breakfast! The potatoes are buttery soft, the turkey is deliciously filling, and the cranberries add that perfectly balanced sweetness. And if you’d like, you can top the hash with a poached egg!

Have more leftovers from Thanksgiving side dishes? It’s really easy to create salads, bowls, and casseroles from honey glazed carrots to green beans and roasted Brussels sprouts. These pre-cooked vegetables will make your throw-together meals a cinch.

As far as mashed potatoes go, these potato pancakes are a no brainer. They’re crisp, savory, and a fun way to enjoy your mashed sides all over again.

Leftover turkey salad and turkey casserole

Leftover Turkey Recipes To Get Excited About

5 from 6 votes
Prep: 30 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


Turn your turkey leftovers into a variety of easy and healthy meals like this tasty harvest salad!


For The Salad

  • 6 cups baby spinach, or other salad greens
  • 4 strips cooked bacon, crumbled
  • 1 cup cooked turkey breast, cubed
  • 1 cup roasted butternut squash, cubed
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, quartered
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • 2 tablespoons cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons pecans, roughly chopped

Apple Cider Vinaigrette


  • Mix together the apple cider vinaigrette ingredients in a small bowl.
    Apple cider vinaigrette in a bowl for a turkey cobb salad.
  • In a large salad bowl, layer the spinach with bacon, turkey breast, roasted butternut squash, boiled eggs, cranberries, pecans, and goat cheese. Drizzle the apple cider vinaigrette on top and enjoy.
    A bowl with turkey cobb salad next to a napkin and fork.


Calories: 683kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 48g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 279mg | Sodium: 768mg | Potassium: 1220mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 16433IU | Vitamin C: 42mg | Calcium: 211mg | Iron: 5mg
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Leftover turkey recipes, Turkey Leftovers
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Made my version when I got home from work last night and oh! my! So good and refreshing. No butternut squash and used regular bagged lettuce (on hand) along with dried cranberries purchased for hash recipe (tonight’s dinner! LOL) Will be making again and again, I’m sure. Thank you! Thank you!5 stars

  2. Ok, so I made the Turkey Cobb Salad which was delish, and now have that turkey cranberry hash earmarked for our upcoming leftover Christmas turkey meat.5 stars

  3. These dishes are so much better than boring turkey sandwiches. I love that I can reuse all the leftovers for different meals served in different ways.5 stars

  4. This is a great recipe to keep handy if you like turkey. Not only for Thanksgiving but for any time you want to enjoy turkey throughout the year. Yum!5 stars