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Even though Thanksgiving has come and gone, the feast continues to give as you find ways to grant the leftovers a second life in made-over dishes all weekend long. Turkey soup and sandwiches are timeless choices, but there are indeed ways to dress them up this year, plus other ideas for making the most out of the side dishes as well. Sunny recommends frying the stuffing into eat-with-your-hands bites, while Rachael creates a casserole out of the meat and mushrooms. Check out Food Network’s top-five recipes for Thanksgiving leftovers below to find the how-tos for making these next-day favorites and more.
5. Second-Day Fried Stuffing Bites with Cranberry Sauce Pesto — It doesn’t matter whether you’ve made stuffing with sourdough, cornbread or another bread variety on Thanksgiving; put what’s left to work in Sunny’s two-bite beauties pictured above. They’re crispy on the outside with a tender center of stuffing, and they’re best served with a pestolike mixture of tangy-sweet cranberry sauce and crunchy walnuts.
4. Turkey, Mushroom and Corn Mexican Casserole — Not only does Rachael’s cheesy, comforting casserole feature leftover turkey, but it also incorporates some of the miscellaneous items — like chicken stock, cream, mushrooms and onions — that you have in your refrigerator after the holiday.
3. Bird to the Last Drop — Alton takes care not to waste any part of the turkey after Thanksgiving, as he saves the carcass and uses it alongside the leftover meat to flavor this hearty rice-studded soup.
2. Turkey Pot Pie — Substitute turkey in place of traditional chicken in this family-friendly supper, an all-in-one meal that’s made easily, thanks to a topping of prepared pie crust.
1. Open-Faced Hot Turkey Sammies with Sausage Stuffing and Gravy, Smashed Potatoes with Bacon and Warm Apple Cranberry Sauce — Rachael’s loaded plate (pictured above) boasts anything but an ordinary turkey sandwich. She features almost every component of the feast, including creamy gravy, in this ultimate sandwich, making it every bit as satisfying as Thanksgiving dinner itself. Click the play button on the video below to watch how she makes it.