After the Big Meal

Thanksgiving is tomorrow. It may be a bit late to offer you some new recipe for the big meal, but what about a recipe for the day after - when you are looking at a few pounds of turkey or ham in the refrigerator? I like to get creative with my leftovers.

Turkey is a great source of protein and is low fat. The flavor is not too far off from chicken, so it can be used as a chicken substitute in other dishes. Some of the easiest things that come to mind are pot pies, soft tacos, and enchiladas.

Goodness knows that after a few days in the kitchen preparing for Thanksgiving, most cooks just want to sleep off Black Friday. Instead of eating a turkey sandwich, or just warming up the same food you had yesterday, add a bit of spice, some tortillas and cheese, and voila - you have enchiladas. It really is that simple. 

When you are out getting those last few items for the big meal, grab a bag of soft taco or burrito sized tortillas, a large can of red enchilada sauce, a package of taco or fajita seasoning, and a bag of shredded Mexican blend or sharp cheddar cheese. If you want to jazz them up, add a bit of sour cream, some shredded lettuce, and salsa or guacamole. I also enjoy a side of Spanish rice with my enchiladas and you can usually find a package of pre-seasoned rice at the grocery – just add a can of tomatoes.

You can also get creative with ham. It is easily incorporated into a quiche, hash or frittata. All these recipes are easy to find here or with a quick on-line search. So, I hope these ideas have given you a bit of inspiration on how to use those left-over meats. Live, Laugh, Love and Eat Well.

Britt’s Turkey Enchiladas

Serves 4 to 6

  • 1 to 1.5 LBS Cooked turkey, shredded
  • 1 package Taco or Fajita seasoning
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • Water
  • 6 to 8 tortillas, soft taco size or larger
  • 1 large can red enchilada sauce
  • 1 two cup bag of shredded Mexican blend or sharp cheddar cheese

In a large skillet, sauté the onion and bell pepper with a little oil for 3 to 5 minutes on medium high heat. When soft, add the shredded turkey. Then follow the instructions on the taco seasoning package and add the appropriate amount of water. Bring to a simmer and 10 to 15 minutes.  Remove from heat and allow to cool a few minutes for easier handling.

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray or line with a little butter. Take a tortilla and scoop out some of the turkey mixture into the tortilla just to one side of the middle. I use about ½ cup plus or minus depending on the size of the tortillas. Carefully roll the tortillas up without folding in the sides and carefully transfer to the baking dish. Repeat until baking dish is full or you have used all the meat.

Shake up the enchilada sauce and pour over the tortillas. Place in oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes then top with cheese and put back into oven for another 5 to 10 minutes or until cheese has melted and become bubbly. Serve with shredded lettuce, sour cream, salsa, and a side of Spanish rice or beans.

Note: you can prepare the filling ahead of time and roll the enchiladas just before assembly and baking.  Don’t roll up the enchiladas ahead or the moisture will make the tortillas fall apart.

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