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Long Live Leftovers!

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Making a holiday feast is labor-intensive and time-consuming. The last thing anyone wants to do afterwards is cook more, but days of heavy eating take a toll. A few adjustments while prepping for the event can help repurpose leftovers in a healthy way and reduce kitchen time for several days.

Feast Prep

While you’re already chopping veggies, dice some extra carrots, onions, and celery to use in soup later on. You’ll welcome vegetable dishes that aren’t drowning in heavy sauce (or marshmallows) on the table with the turkey and in meals to come. Try these unladen options:

Lighter Leftovers:

Salad

Start with salad greens and add roasted veggies and turkey. Cold turkey not your thing? Heat it up. Nobody said salads have to be cold. Stuffing can sub for croutons; add some cranberry sauce to salad dressing for a hearty, yet lighter, meal.

Scramble

Scramble, skillet, hash—whatever it’s called, holiday remnants are ready for their chance to shine again the next morning. You can repurpose everything (except possibly Aunt Margery’s liver and olive Jell-O mold) at breakfast. Heat up selections in a pan with a little olive oil or butter. When they’re warm, add a couple of beaten eggs and cook through.

Prefer eggs over easy? Fry them separately and serve them on top. Finishing touches: gravy, cranberry sauce, and even nuts and cheese from yesterday’s hors d’oeuvre tray.

Soup

If you’ve never made soup stock, try it. Rebecca Katz’s Magic Mineral Broth is so easy, the vegetables don’t even need to be peeled. Add the bones from your holiday bird and turn it into turkey stock. Store-bought stock is totally acceptable, too. Throw in chopped turkey and your extra pre-prepped veggies and build from there. Try this leftover turkey soup recipe or this turkey corn chowder.

Ready to experiment? Here are some unique dishes:

If you’re trying to stay healthy during the holidays, the recipes above can help. Who knows, maybe you’ll find one or two you want to use all year around! And if you’re looking for more healthy eating tips, we’ve got plenty in the Food section here at healthpossible.org.

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