One of the best parts of Thanksgiving is the leftovers. We do a fairly traditional Thanksgiving meal – turkey (raised on our farm in Vermont!), stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce, massaged kale salad, and gravy – but what we really look forward to is the meal we make with the leftovers. However, my husband and I prefer different Friday meals. He is all about the turkey sandwich piled high with stuffing and with a generous slathering of cranberry aioli, while I’m making creamy turkey and wild rice soup with the bones, turkey meat, green beans, gravy, and remaining kale. It might not be the most conventional way to eat leftovers, but after 10 years working in a test kitchen, I am the queen of repurposing bits and pieces left in the fridge into new meals.
Since we all get tired of eating the same thing over and over, using your Souper Cubes to freeze your leftovers means you can enjoy stuffing later. Freezing food in individual portions means you don't have to deal with leftovers twice. Read below to learn what freezes well and for how long.
Ideas for Leftover Turkey
There are numerous articles and recipes with ideas of what to do with your leftover turkey but these are the favorites from the Souper Cubes team.
- Turkey Wild Rice Soup – we like to add mushrooms or kale
- Turkey Pot Pie – you can use this recipe but swap the chicken for turkey
- Turkey Enchiladas
- Turkey Chili
- Turkey Stock - make the broth from the bones then use it for your soup!
- Turkey Burritos - leftovers all rolled up
Ideas for Leftover Mashed Potatoes & Sweet Potatoes
- As a topping for this Shepherd’s Pie
- Add broccoli and cheddar to make Twice Baked Potatoes
- Mashed Potato Waffles
Safe Food Storage Times
According to the USDA, cooked turkey, gravy, and leftovers can be safely refrigerated for up to 4 days and frozen for 3 to 4 months. Technically, frozen food is safe indefinitely however, the quality of the food may decrease as the food loses moisture.
Refreezing Previously Frozen Food
Previously frozen raw and cooked food that has been cooked can be frozen again, however, the quality may not be ideal again because of the moisture loss. Previously frozen raw meat, poultry, or fish should only be refrozen if it was defrosted and kept cold in the fridge.
Best Containers for Freezing
Souper Cubes portioned silicone trays are the best way to freeze your leftovers so you can eat only the portion you want, when you want it. For soups, broths, casseroles, cooked grains, and stews I freeze in ½ cup, 1 cup, and 2 cup portions. For sauces and butters, I opt for the 2 Tbsp or ½ cup trays. When you freeze in individual portions, you can not only heat up just the amount you need but thawing and heating goes faster too!
Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!