Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (2024)

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This is the best leftover turkey recipe everyone will love! Super easy and flavorful turkey dumplings that even your kids will love! Great for Thanksgiving leftovers.

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (1)

This is seriously the best leftover turkey recipe everyone will love. We make each year!Not only did my picky husband give it a thumbs up, but the kids loved it too! 😉 (originally published 11/13, affiliate links present)

I always have a ton of leftover turkey, and ham. Hating to throw any of it away, I fiddled around with different ideas over the years and finally came up with an easy cooked turkey recipe.

  • This year I came up with this yummy leftover turkey recipe! They kinda’ look like little turnovers or pockets that everyone enjoyed!

If you too have leftover Thanksgiving turkey I know you’re wondering:

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How long is leftover turkey good for in the fridge

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (2)

3-4 days is typical. Yes you can make sandwiches, and more sandwiches but that is BORING!! Once is about my limit I tell you.

It is time to get way more creative than that. This leftover turkey recipe everyone will love!

How long can you eat leftover turkey from Thanksgiving?

  • 3 to 4 days
  • The USDA recommends that you throw everything out after this time, but realistically you’ve got about twice that long.
    • This timing really applies to all Thanksgiving sides; mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, turkey stuffing, cranberry sauce, gravy, you name it.

Can you freeze turkey after 3 days

  • In general the refrigerator will slow the growth enough that cooked meat can be kept safely for up to 5 days.

In the freezer your cooked meat can be stored for 2-3 months. If you want to freeze food you should really do it as soon as possible after cooking to maximize the amount of time it will keep in the freezer well.

Ready for the best leftover turkey recipe now? You have come to the right place!

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (3)

We always have leftovers and I just hate throwing food away.

I thought that beyond turkey sandwiches there had to be some other simple ways to use this delicious meat.

Here is the printable recipe for you and what you’ll need to make these fun leftover turkey dumplings we call them.

Best leftover turkey recipe

  1. Refrigerated crescent rolls
  2. Leftover turkey
  3. Mayonnaise
  4. Cheese – we like Swiss or mozzarella

Use any and all seasoning you usually throw into everything – we like dill, salt, and pepper

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (4)


All you do is cube the turkey and cheese, add the rest of the ingredients and stir in a bowl.

  • Then lay each crescent roll with the larger part of the triangle inside the muffin tin and the smaller end hanging out.

Scoop the mixture inside the muffin cup, and fold the smaller end over the top and tuck it underneath a bit.

  • Bake as directed on the crescent roll container, take out when they are golden brown on the top, and waaallaahhhhh…..they were great!

Ours takes about 10 minutes per batch. I have a muffin pan that holds 12 so I usually make that many. Crescents come in 8 so if I want more I’ll throw the other 4 in after I scoop these out.

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (5)

Once you try the best leftover turkey recipe you see here, I have a few other ways of using your leftover turkey or ham this year too!

  • Leftover ham recipe
  • This Instant Pot turkey tetrazzini
  • Leftover turkey noodle soup is kinda’ like pot pie without the crust
    • Our leftover turkey pot pie recipe is fantastic.

We are all about soup during the Fall and Winter months.

  • Instant Pot shredded turkey soup
  • More Leftover turkey meat recipes
  • Leftover turkey casserole is great all thrown into a baking dish and into the oven
  • Use leftover turkey to make these cute turkey burger boats

This is what these leftover turkey dumplings look like when they’re golden brown and ready to be eaten!!

  • Prepped and baked in about 20 minutes, it’s a great post Thanksgiving dinner to try. Let us know what y’all think, we’d love to hear your families reactions.
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Can leftover turkey be frozen?

  • Yes!
  • Roasted turkey freezes very well but you should remove the meat from the bones first. Then freeze each one separately. Turkey can be frozen for up to three months in airtight containers or freezer bags.

What should you serve with these turkey dumplings?

  • I love to use up all my other items in the fridge like the little bit of green beans that didn’t get finished etc.
  • A side of veggies is always a plus.
  • Side salads are easy to throw together too.

I also have 20 recipes for using leftover ham as well. Many of them you can substitute turkey for ham for more ideas!

Here is a video of how we make this family friendly recipe.

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Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (8)

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (9)

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4.75 from 16 votes

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe

This is the best leftover turkey recipe you will ever make! Super easy and everyone will love these turkey dumplings, even your kids! Great with ham too.

Course Entree, Snack

Cuisine American

Keyword dumplings, leftover, lunch, snack, turkey

Prep Time 10 minutes minutes

Cook Time 10 minutes minutes

Total Time 20 minutes minutes

Servings 8

Calories 261kcal

Author The Typical Mom


  • 2 c Leftover turkey cooked, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 c mayonnaise or more if you want more moist
  • 1 c swiss or mozzarella cheese, shredded, or more
  • 1 pkg Crescent rolls 8 which was enough for the 5 of us
  • 1 tsp dill pinch of each
  • salt
  • pepper
  • thyme
  • optional * dried cranberries or walnuts


  • Spray non stick cooking spray into muffin tin.

  • Push large side of crescent triangle into bottom of each muffin tin.

  • Mix leftover turkey and all other ingredients together and spoon into each muffin tin hole.

  • Fold small piece of crescent triangle over top of turkey mixture. Bake as directed on crescent roll container, or until lightly browned on top.


Nutrition Facts

Best Leftover Turkey Recipe

Amount Per Serving (4 oz)

Calories 261Calories from Fat 171

% Daily Value*

Fat 19g29%

Saturated Fat 4g25%

Cholesterol 44mg15%

Sodium 356mg15%

Potassium 100mg3%

Carbohydrates 11g4%

Sugar 3g3%

Protein 11g22%

Vitamin A 300IU6%

Vitamin C 1.3mg2%

Calcium 7mg1%

Iron 0.8mg4%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Best Leftover Turkey Recipe! (2024)


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