By Chef Shahir Massoud
The holidays are here, and no matter how you celebrate, you’ll likely have turkey on the table. This year, I’ll be enjoying a delicious dinner with my wife Mila and our three-year-old son, Kairo. Given it’s just the three of us, I expect we’ll have some leftovers, but I’m not complaining.
Leftovers are one of my favourite parts of a holiday meal (besides the turkey… and the company). From Turkey Ramen to Potato and Stuffing Gnocchi, you can take leftovers from boring to brilliant with just a touch of creativity.
Check out my absolute favourite holiday leftover recipes below (and my secret to the ultimate broth) or browse Butterball.ca for some more inspiration.
The Best Turkey Broth
Turkey broth is a triple threat—it tastes amazing, it’s good for you and it’s relatively easy to make. All you need are the leftover turkey bones from your holiday dinner, some vegetable oil, a couple of spices and some fresh vegetables.
Are you here for the secret? Roast your bones first, then deglaze the pan. This will help make your broth even more flavourful!
Bones from 1 turkey, chopped into smaller pieces
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
2 carrots, roughly chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 white onion, chopped
1/4 cup tomato paste
4 bay leaves
5 cloves garlic
1 bunch thyme
1 bunch rosemary
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Coat turkey bones in oil, then roast for 45–60 minutes. Deglaze roasting pan with some water, then transfer to a stockpot. Add the rest of the ingredients and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and allow to cook for 2–4 hours. Allow to cool completely, strain, then store in air-tight containers for up to 5 days or freeze for up to a month.
- For added flavour, consider swapping out the water in this recipe for store-bought broth.
Turkey Ramen Soup (serves 6)
While regular turkey noodle soup is timeless, and delicious, I’m all about taking things up a notch. This Turkey Ramen recipe is the perfect dish to cozy up with on cold winter nights. The best part? It tastes amazing and it’s super easy to make.
2 L turkey stock
6 eggs, soft boiled for 7 minutes
2 bunches green onions, finely sliced
2 cups leftover turkey, shredded
2 Tbsp. sesame oil
2 Tbsp. chili oil (optional)
300 g fresh noodles
4 nori sheets
- Cooking: Boil your noodles, then rinse under cold water. Set aside. Add your eggs to boiling water for 7 minutes, then remove, shock in cold water and peel.
- Assembly: Ladle hot stock into each bowl, then add the cooked noodles. Add some shredded turkey, top with sliced green onion and the egg that has been halved. Drizzle in sesame and chili oil, then garnish with a piece of nori.
Potato and Stuffing Gnocchi (serves 4–6)
We always have a lot of leftover stuffing in our house. It’s delicious on its own, but we’re trying to encourage our son to try different things. This recipe is great for involving kids in the kitchen, showing them how to get creative and for expanding their palates.
2 1/2 cups mashed potatoes
1 cup stuffing
1 3/4 cup flour
- Put all ingredients in a bowl and knead for 2–3 minutes, until combined. Rest for 30 minutes.
- Cut off a piece of the dough and roll into a long, snake shape, about 1 inch thick. Cut off even-sized pieces to create your gnocchi. Place on a flour-dusted sheet tray and continue until all the gnocchi have been shaped.
- Cook in salted boiling water until the gnocchi rises to the top. Take the cooked gnocchi out with a strainer, then add to a pan with butter. Transfer to a serving platter and top with grated parmesan cheese.
Cranberry sauce is a must for any holiday dinner, big or small! I don’t know about you, but we rarely use the whole can and sometimes struggle to find ways to repurpose the leftover sauce. Problem solved – the perfect combination of sweet and savoury, this jammy Cranberry Mostarda can be enjoyed on just about anything.
2 cups cranberry sauce
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp chili flakes
1/2 tsp salt
- Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a gentle boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook slowly for 20–25 minutes, until slightly thickened.
- Serve on your favourite cheese, charcuterie, eggs or even leftover turkey sandwiches.
There you have it—some seriously delicious ways to use up those holiday leftovers. Who knows, you might like these recipes so much you’ll cook another turkey next week!