Ah, what to do with all of those delicious Thanksgiving leftovers. The family has departed, the dishes are finally washed and you’ve already been dipping into the extra turkey and stuffing. Now you’re ready for a twist on that extra food, try our Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie. I love shepherd’s pie, this leftovers version will take 10 minutes hands on time, you can’t beat it for ease and flavor.
This shepherd’s pie is a hack on the original that usually has ground beef and mashed potatoes as it’s base. We used a quick riced cauliflower recipe for our holiday meal, so we are topping our Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie with the cauliflower. You are welcome to use mashed potatoes or stuffing here if that’s what you have.
What if I Don’t Have Any Leftover Riced Cauliflower, Mashed Potatoes or Stuffing?
You can always buy the frozen mashed potatoes at the grocery. If you do this you’ll want to heat them up and then doctor with additional butter and maybe salt and pepper. Check the ingredients to get the most “whole food” worthy bag of frozen mashed potatoes.
Or just leave the topping off, you won’t have shepherd’s pie but you will have a great tasting casserole.
Is this Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie Gluten Free?
That depends on what you are putting in it. Most mashed potatoes and riced cauliflowers are gluten free, obviously the majority of stuffings are not. Any of these three can be used as the topping to your Shepherd’s Pie. The interior ingredients are most likely gluten free, but again depends on how the original recipes were made. But most vegetables and turkey will fall into the gluten free category.
What If I Don’t Have Enough Leftover Vegetables?
That happened to me. I grabbed some frozen corn and tossed it in with the other leftover cooked vegetables. I didn’t even heat the corn, just broke it up and stirred the corn in. You can use whatever frozen vegetables that you have. Traditional type holiday vegetables or pot pie ingredients work well. Think green beans, peas, corn, carrots, onions, you get the idea.
If you used onions as a bed for the turkey then use those cooked onions here, you may have to cut them up a bit.
How Can I Make This Recipe A Little More Special?
I like to top it all off with some cheese to change up the overall taste, and who doesn’t love a little extra cheese on things?
Extra gravy? Stir it in with the vegetables and turkey for an extra creamy inside. Or give a small bowl to each diner for dunking bites into the warm gravy.
Extra Orange Cranberry Sauce? Serve a bowl of cranberry sauce with each plate. I cover my Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie with the sauce. It’s a huge flavor booster.
If everyone is a cranberry sauce lover, then cover the melted cheese with the cranberry sauce after it comes out of the oven. MMM, MMMM.
What Else Can I Do With My Thanksgiving Leftovers?
When you serve leftovers in a different format, it brings on a fresh perspective. Somehow it doesn’t seem like the same ole dinner but a special one made from scratch.
Surprise your family with Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie. 10 minutes hands on time for a delicious dinner.
Think of classic chicken recipes and just switch out to turkey. Think chili, sloppy joes, potpie, chicken (turkey) salad, pizza, or soup.
Thanksgiving Leftovers Turkey Shepherd's Pie
10 minutes hands on time makes this Thanksgiving Leftovers Turkey Shepherd's Pie a no brainer. And it's delicious to boot!
- 2 1/2 Cups Cooked turkey
- 1 1/2 Cups Cooked green beans or other cooked vegetables
- 1 1/2 Cups Frozen vegetables if you don't have enough leftovers
- 3 Cups Cooked riced cauliflower or mashed potatoes or stuffing
- 1 Cup Cheddar cheese shredded
- 2 Cups Gravy optional
- 2 Cups Orange cranberry sauce optional
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Mix cooked turkey and vegetables. If you have gravy mix this in too. Top with leftover cooked riced cauliflower, mashed potatoes or stuffing. Top with cheddar cheese or cheese of your choice.
Cook, uncovered for 20-30 minutes or until heated through. If you have cranberry sauce lovers then top the shepherd's pie with the cranberry sauce, otherwise serve the sauce in a dish for diners to garnish with later.
These quantities are only for reference, use whatever you have on hand.
If you find you don't have enough leftovers then substitute with what you have on hand.
Not enough vegetables? Use frozen vegetables, you don't even need to cook them, just separate so you are not adding a huge "chunk".
Not enough cauliflower, mashed potatoes or stuffing? You can leave all of these off and then you'll have a casserole instead of shepherd's pie. Or use frozen mashed potatoes from the grocery store.