Where to Donate Your Thanksgiving Leftovers

Big Thanksgiving meals with family and friends means leftovers (as evidenced by examples G, O, B, B, L, and E).

But in a season where a lot of us are surrounded by so much, it’s important to remember those who aren’t as fortunate. In 2020, an estimate…

Big Thanksgiving meals with family and friends means leftovers (as evidenced by examples G, O, B, B, L, and E).

But in a season where a lot of us are surrounded by so much, it's important to remember those who aren't as fortunate. In 2020, an estimated 40 million Americans lived in food insecure households. Food insecurity, while a slightly ambiguous term, generally refers to to limited access to adequate amounts of nutritious food due to financial constraints.

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9 Ways to Slather Everything in Leftover Gravy

Turkey and stuffing get all the attention when it comes to Thanksgiving leftovers, but let’s talk about the backbone that holds the whole meal together: gravy. Leftover gravy can be use to add moisture to reheated turkey, and of course as a dipping sau…

Turkey and stuffing get all the attention when it comes to Thanksgiving leftovers, but let’s talk about the backbone that holds the whole meal together: gravy. Leftover gravy can be use to add moisture to reheated turkey, and of course as a dipping sauce for all your Thanksgiving leftover sandwiches, but it’s great for so much more.

Read on for 9 ways to creatively use up any and all gravy you may have leftover from your Thanksgiving feast.

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How to Transform Leftover Potatoes into Shiny New Dinners

As a single person who loves to cook, there are many a week where I eat the same dish over and over (and over) again. But as much as I love leftovers (especially leftover potatoes), I also love variety. To balance affordability and flavor fatigue, I tu…

As a single person who loves to cook, there are many a week where I eat the same dish over and over (and over) again. But as much as I love leftovers (especially leftover potatoes), I also love variety. To balance affordability and flavor fatigue, I turn to dishes that transform into entirely new meals with just a few extra ingredients.

I hardly need to tell you, but hearty, humble potatoes are leftover superstars. From mashed to baked, roasted to boiled, potatoes transition into solid foundations for salads, soups, patties, and casseroles. With a little bit of planning, potatoes can fill you up all week long. Here are some of my favorite ways to reuse spuds.

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How to Freeze Leftover Turkey (Because We Know You Have Tons)

For many of us, Thanksgiving is the one meal where we purposefully plan for leftovers. A Thanksgiving meal without leftovers just isn’t right in my opinion. This Thanksgiving, much like last year, will probably look a little different than the traditio…

For many of us, Thanksgiving is the one meal where we purposefully plan for leftovers. A Thanksgiving meal without leftovers just isn’t right in my opinion. This Thanksgiving, much like last year, will probably look a little different than the traditional holiday—whether that means on a video call or just pared down. Either way, smaller celebrations can mean more leftover food, especially if you can’t fathom Turkey Day without the turkey. So when it comes to leftover turkey, how long does it actually last in the fridge? And can you freeze it? It’s not as simple as a yes or no, so let’s dive in.

First let’s clarify something: We’re talking cooked turkey. If you have leftover raw turkey, you can certainly store it in the freezer and save it for another day! Here are two tips to help ensure you’re doing it safely. First, keep turkey, or any meat for that matter, in its original packaging. Manufacturers choose this packaging because it’s typically air-sealed to keep bacteria out. If there’s a tear or puncture in the packaging, you should repackage it in an airtight container or wrap tightly in plastic wrap. The more you expose the meat to air and bacteria, the more you increase the potential for spoilage. Secondly, make sure your freezer is set to actually freeze; that means it maintains a temperature of 0°F or below. If you have a separate fridge or chest freezer in the basement that gets used less frequently, this is the time to use it. The more you open and use the freezer, the harder it has to work to regulate the temperature. A frozen whole turkey can be kept for approximately 12 months in a freezer set at or below 0°F, while pieces will start degrading in quality slightly sooner, at around 6 to 9 months.

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10 Shatteringly Flaky Leftover Puff Pastry Recipes

As an avid baker, I’m a firm believer in the power of making things from scratch at least once. Even if it fails, you gain an appreciation for the professionals! But there’s one thing I will never make myself: puff pastry. Until the day comes when I am…

As an avid baker, I’m a firm believer in the power of making things from scratch at least once. Even if it fails, you gain an appreciation for the professionals! But there’s one thing I will never make myself: puff pastry. Until the day comes when I am cast on The Great British Baking Show and faced with a technical challenge, I will be raiding the freezer aisle for this stuff. Puff pastry is a constant in my freezer, a shortcut to beautiful, sophisticated, stress-free food. That’s why, to me, there is no such thing as leftover puff pastry. But if you bought it for a recipe during the holidays and ended up using only one of two sheets in the package, I’m here to show you a world of possibilities. From appetizers and one-bite wonders to centerpiece-worthy main dishes and impressive desserts, puff pastry is one of the most versatile items you can stock in your kitchen. My hope is that by the time you’re done reading this list of all the ways to cook with it, puff pastry will have graduated beyond the land of holiday leftovers and earned a permanent spot on your shopping list.

Puff Pieces

1. ‘Everything’ Pigs in a Blanket

Meet the easiest people-pleasing app of all time. In my opinion, it’s not a party without pigs in a blanket, and with just a few store-bought ingredients, you can make any night feel like an occasion. Just think of the “everything” seasoning as confetti.

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8 Leftover Turkey Pasta Recipes (Because We Can’t Eat Another Sandwich)

Picture this: It’s two days after Thanksgiving, and you’ve consumed more “Moist Maker” turkey sandwiches than any one person needs to eat. And yet, when you open the fridge, there’s still pounds upon pounds of cooked turkey leftovers staring back at yo…

Picture this: It’s two days after Thanksgiving, and you’ve consumed more “Moist Maker” turkey sandwiches than any one person needs to eat. And yet, when you open the fridge, there’s still pounds upon pounds of cooked turkey leftovers staring back at you. We’ve all hit the wall of Thanksgiving leftovers: the flavors of sage, rosemary, and turkey gravy infiltrating every taste bud, the thought of cold, dry turkey haunting your dreams.

1. Turkey Pho

Vietnamese noodle soup may not be the first thing that comes to mind when staring at a fridge full of leftover turkey, but it should be. Raid your pantry for spices like coriander, cinnamon sticks, star anise, and cloves to transform leftover chicken or turkey broth (or homemade from the turkey bones if you’re feeling ambitious!). Rice noodles are traditional in pho, but cellophane noodles or any other thin non-wheat noodle you have on hand will work in a pinch.

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Leftover Canned Pumpkin Is a Very Good Thing

Long live this season’s favorite squash: pumpkin! As a baker and pie fanatic, I love keeping a few cans of pumpkin in my pantry at all times and stock up each year when it comes into season (and goes on sale at the grocery store!). It’s versatile, can …

Long live this season’s favorite squash: pumpkin! As a baker and pie fanatic, I love keeping a few cans of pumpkin in my pantry at all times and stock up each year when it comes into season (and goes on sale at the grocery store!). It’s versatile, can skew sweet or savory, and is useful for so much more than pie. While most pumpkin pie recipes will call for an entire can, many recipes do not, and there’s nothing worse than ending up with a half-empty can sitting in your fridge untouched. So I present to you this collection of recipes for that leftover pumpkin, whether it’s a full can or just a few tablespoons at the bottom. And remember, you can always decant pumpkin into freezer-safe containers and keep it for several months or up to a year, or treat canine companions to a spoonful—or even these sourdough pumpkin peanut butter treats; pumpkin is a superfood for dogs!

P.S. Somehow end up with leftover pumpkin pie filling? Take a tip from this pumpkin pudding recipe and bake it off in a ramekin or small casserole dish.

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The Kid-Approved Way to Make Quesadilla Magic

Welcome to Kids & the Kitchen, our new landing pad for parents who love to cook. Head this way for kid-friendly recipes, helpful tips, and heartwarming stories galore—all from real-life parents and their little ones.

Ask any parent, and they’ll …

Welcome to Kids & the Kitchen, our new landing pad for parents who love to cook. Head this way for kid-friendly recipes, helpful tips, and heartwarming stories galore—all from real-life parents and their little ones.


Ask any parent, and they’ll tell you: Kids are born scavengers.

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My Number One Parenting Trick: Always Save Those Two Last Bites

Welcome to Kids & the Kitchen, our new landing pad for parents who love to cook. Head this way for kid-friendly recipes, helpful tips, and heartwarming stories galore—all from real-life parents and their little ones.

In 2008, my then-boyfriend J…

Welcome to Kids & the Kitchen, our new landing pad for parents who love to cook. Head this way for kid-friendly recipes, helpful tips, and heartwarming stories galore—all from real-life parents and their little ones.


In 2008, my then-boyfriend Joseph and I almost broke up over a chicken wing. It was a typical Sunday evening at a college-town pub, filled with mediocre beer, half-off wings, and gripes about grades. As was our custom, our Caribbean crew ordered more wings than we needed. That fateful night, one wing perched alone on the platter, when Joseph requested the bill and…a box.

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How Long Does Leftover Thanksgiving Turkey Last in the Fridge?

It’s a few hours, maybe a day or two at most after Thanksgiving, and you’re hungry. Or maybe you’re not hungry but you’re craving pecan pie. And turkey. And mashed potatoes and stuffing and green beans and Grandma’s corn casserole and cornbread and cra…

It’s a few hours, maybe a day or two at most after Thanksgiving, and you’re hungry. Or maybe you’re not hungry but you’re craving pecan pie. And turkey. And mashed potatoes and stuffing and green beans and Grandma’s corn casserole and cornbread and cranberry sauce. You know, the fixin’s. So you go to the fridge or the freezer to grab a storage container packed to the brim with leftovers from Thanksgiving dinner and wonder, “is this safe to eat?” How long does leftover turkey last?

On this very site we’ve dedicated a contest and many, many posts to tips on how to let all those Thanksgiving leftovers live their best lives—because eating leftover Thanksgiving turkey for an entire week straight can wear down even the most avid of poultry fans.

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