What New Jersey's Doing with Thanksgiving Leftovers

A turkey sandwich is just so lame. Try these ideas from around the state.

The feast is over and everyone has had a good night's sleep fueled by an excess of food and drink.

So what to do with the leftovers? We asked our own staffers and their friends and neighbors and of course, being Patch, scoured the Web, to find out what Jersey does the day after the feast.

Of course, there's a turkey sandwich. But why not make it a bit more Jersey-specific, with a turkey Sloppy Joe? First, a bit of history: cooking enthusiast 

But now on to the recipe, complete with homemade Russian dressing.

Ben has , including what sounds to us like a Thanksgiving Dagwood.

Want a more traditional sandwich? Try "," from Mahwah's 

And , Executive Chef at the Salt Creek Grille in Princeton.

Not a lot of turkey left over? Then try Fabian's recipe for Southwestern Turkey Soup:

Make a deliciously hearty and easy soup with turkey and corn leftovers mixed with tomatoes, beans, and warm southwestern spices.


  • 1 pound leftover turkey, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  •  1 cup leftover vegetables from thanksgiving dinner
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (14-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4  cup of left over corn
  • 1 cup diced fresh avocado, for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish
  • Lime wedges, for garnish

In a sauce pot, combine turkey, onion, vegetables, jalapeno, garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt and ground black pepper. Stir and add the chicken broth, tomatoes, corn and beans. Cover and cook on low for 1 hour.

When ready to serve, ladle soup into bowls and top with avocado and cilantro. Garnish soup with lime wedges. Makes 4 servings.

For something a little less spicy, try this soup recipe, from Dave Martone, owner of  cooking school in Westfield.

More ideas, from Rachel Simpers, a dietician in Hillsborough:

Leftover ham

Ham makes a savory addition to a variety of dishes:

  • Add chopped ham to a hearty bean soup.
  • Mix cubed ham into a frittata made with fat-free liquid eggs and assorted veggies.
  • Top ham slices with pineapple salsa and bake until hot for a flavorsome five-minute entrée.
  • Serve baked potatoes with a dollop of fat-free sour cream, grated low-fat Cheddar cheese and chopped ham.

Leftover turkey

Turkey is a great source of lean protein and a versatile food that works in soups, salads, casseroles and more.

  • For a savory and filling whole-grain salad, mix leftover turkey, cooked brown or wild rice, chopped roasted red bell peppers, chopped green onions, sliced kalamata olives, capers, reduced-fat herb and garlic flavored feta cheese and reduced-fat balsamic vinaigrette and serve as a side dish or stuffed in a large ripe tomato.
  • Add cooked leftover turkey to stir-fried veggies and serve with brown rice.
  • Toss chopped turkey, toasted sliced almonds, chopped apples or pears, dried cranberries and fresh spinach leaves or salad greens and dress with a Dijon-style  vinaigrette.
  • Give turkey soup a gourmet touch by using wild rice or barley, onions, carrots, celery and a mix of wild mushrooms.

OK, so there's not much from New Jersey on this Web site, but their photos were just so appetizing we couldn't leave them out. Lots of interesting ideas here.

Of course, leave it to the cynical folks at Slate to take a contrarian view—Leftover recipes are a sham!

Barbara Battista November 27, 2011 at 04:25 PM
Had a Gobbler at Teddy's in Cranbury, Turkey,stuffing, cranberry sauce on a soft bun with a hugh side of mashed potatoes and gravey... Yum Yum..


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