Thursday, December 3, 2020

Turkey pileup on aisle 10!

 by Sparkle Abbey

Like most of the world, we “canceled” our traditional Thanksgiving gathering. Instead, we celebrated with only the family members we lived with, which was 2-4 people, and Zoomed with the rest of the family.  And while the size of the turkey was reduced from the typical twenty-two pounds to a paltry ten pounds, one of us doesn’t know how to cook a Thanksgiving meal for less than 10 people. So we were left with a pileup of turkey, ham, stuffing, glazed carrots, green beans, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes and gravy, corny cornbread, and rolls. What to do with all that leftover food?

The truth is, you can only eat so many boring ham or turkey sandwiches, right? Eventually, even we have to get creative and transform those bland leftovers into something we want to eat. Plus, we need room in the fridge for Christmas cookies and fudge. After a quick Google search, we actually found a couple of recipes we liked, that was not only super easy to make but pretty quick to throw together. Sorry, we didn’t take any photos of our actual dinners, but we promise the meals were delicious!


Easy Shepard Pie
Serves 2


  • 1 cup chopped leftover turkey
  • 1 cup gravy
  • 1/2 cup frozen mixed vegetables
  • 1 cup stuffing
  • 1 cup mashed


  1. Preheat over 350 degrees.
  2. Grease two ramekins with cooking spray.
  3. Combine chopped turkey with gravy.
  4. Layer equal amounts of ingredients in each ramekin in the following order:
        Turkey and gravy
        Frozen vegetables
        Mashed potatoes

  5. Place ramekins on a baking sheet, place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until potatoes slightly brown.

Serve warm.


Turkey Tortellini Soup
Serves 4


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 1/4  cup thinly sliced carrots
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3 cups turkey stock or chicken broth
  • 2 cups chopped or shredded leftover turkey
  • 1 (9-oz.) pkg. refrigerated tortellini of your choice
  • 1 (5-oz.) pkg. fresh spinach
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese



  1. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high.
  2. Add onion, celery, and carrots; cook, stirring often, until vegetables begin to soften, 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Add garlic. Stir for about 1 minute.
  4.  Add turkey/chicken stock and cooked turkey, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and simmer 10 minutes.
  5.  Add tortellini, and simmer until tortellini are cooked per directions on the package.  Usually 6-7 minutes.
  6.  Stir in spinach, salt, and pepper. Remove from heat. Top each serving with shaved Parmesan cheese.

Leftover Ham & Cheese Brunch Bake


  • 10 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, plus more for garnish
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • Salt & pepper 
  • 4 cups of cubed bread (Crusty bread, like French bread works best.)
  • 8 ounces of chopped ham
  • 1 1/2 cup of shredded cheddar cheese (Can be regular cheddar or white cheddar.) 


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, mustard, thyme, & garlic powder.
  3. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
  4. Butter a large baking dish. Add bread and top with ham and cheese. 
  5. Pour egg mixture over the top.
  6. Bake until eggs are cooked through – approximately 45 to 55 minutes. 
  7. Reserve a little of the thyme for garnish and add it before serving. 

Note: The bake is even better if you make it the night before, cover with foil, and refrigerate overnight

Here are the links to the original recipes:

Sparkle Abbey is actually two people, Mary Lee Ashford and Anita Carter, who write the national best-selling Pampered Pets cozy mystery series. They are friends as well as neighbors so they often get together and plot ways to commit murder. (But don't tell the other neighbors.) 

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