Easy Recipes for Your Holiday Leftovers

December 09, 2014 Seasonal Tips

If you're anything like me, your refrigerator overflows with leftovers from the end of November through the beginning of January — whether it's leftovers from Thanksgiving, holiday parties or family gatherings. Sometimes you open up the refrigerator and see a ton of food but have no idea what to do with all of it. Here are a few suggestions to help you liven up those leftovers and turn them into delectable new meals (and reduce wastefulness).

Liven up those leftovers and turn them into delectable new meals.

Spice It Up Caribbean jerk spice is fun: It has a delicious kick and unique flavor profile. It definitely spices up the leftover pork loin and uncooked sweet potatoes in this Caribbean-inspired stew. The combination of dark-red kidney beans, pork and spices make for a savory change from typical leftovers.

Make It Easy I always end up buying more sweet potatoes than I need for my sweet potato casserole. This unique recipe tops sweet potatoes with a mix of baked beans, apple, cheese and bacon, and you have a meal that takes only minutes. I like that sweet-and-savory topping perfectly complements the potatoes.

Cook Some Chili Have leftover turkey? Who doesn't! After you've eaten your sandwiches, casseroles and tetrazzinis, you may still have some left. Substitute turkey for the chicken in this citrusy chili. This tastes like a little bit of summertime in the winter, with its bright lemon flavor and garbanzo beans instead of more traditional kidney beans. This is definitely on my make-use-of-leftovers list this holiday season.

Sauté Those Leftovers This skillet dish is sort of like a dinnertime hash: Substitute turkey for chicken (skipping the browning step), throw in your leftover corn with some salsa and black beans, and serve over rice for an easy, savory dinner that uses up leftovers.

You don't have to eat your leftovers as-is. With a little creativity, there are plenty of ways to make them just as interesting and delicious as they were the first time around.

MeetJulie Niesen

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