The Thanksgiving meal is a lot like a movie franchise.
You leave the table after your first meal happy, satisfied and excited for Thanksgiving II.
The follow-up is pretty good. Maybe parts of it are a little dry, but we all know sequels rarely top the original.
The third and fourth installments are flat. The flavor you remember is gone. Everything is tasteless. Unfortunately, there’s still plenty of food crowding your refrigerator to eke out that fifth meal.
If “Pirates of the Caribbean” taught us anything, it’s that you can have too much of a good thing.
No one wants to see the meal they spent hours preparing be tossed like a Tuesday night meatloaf, but there’s only so many Thanksgiving meals you can force yourself to eat. Fortunately, there are some great recipes out there that revamp your leftovers into new, appetizing dishes with little effort on your part.
LEFTOVER TURKEY CRESCENT BAKE
In 3-quart saucepan, mix stuffing, turkey and gravy. Heat to boiling over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Spoon into ungreased 13×9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish.
Separate or cut dough into 4 long rectangles (if using crescent rolls, press perforations to seal). Place rectangles over stuffing, leaving space between rectangles for steam to escape.
Bake at 375 degrees 20 to 25 minutes. Top with cranberry sauce.
Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat.
Cook and stir onion and garlic in the melted butter until onion is tender, 5 to 7 minutes.
Preheat a waffle iron according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Combine onion mixture, mashed potatoes, flour, eggs, salt, and black pepper in a large bowl until well blended.
Scoop 1/4 to 1/2 cup batter (depending on size of waffle iron) into the center of waffle iron and close lid. Cook until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes
LEFTOVER CRANBERRY SAUCE MUFFINS
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper liners or grease well. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon. Rub in sugar and orange zest together. Whisk into dry ingredients.
In a separate medium bowl, whisk canola oil, egg, milk, and vanilla together.
Incorporate the wet ingredients into flour mixture. Add slowly and gently stir together. The batter will be thick.
Place half the batter at the bottom of six muffin cups. Spoon about two tablespoons of fresh cranberry sauce on top of the muffin batter. Top muffins evenly with remaining muffin batter. Sprinkle each muffin generously with sugar.
Bake muffins for 15-17 minutes, or until muffins are golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove the muffins from the pan and let cool on a cooling rack.
Pour leftover batter into ramekins and bake at 350 degrees until cooked through, 20 to 30 minutes.
Cool. Top with whipped cream and cinnamon.