Thanksgiving Leftovers: Turkey Picadillo

(Leftover) Turkey Picadillo
Image Source: OneHungryMama

Thanksgiving is fast approaching and you know what that means, right?

LEFTOVERS! Lots and lots of leftovers.

Of course I’ll have Thanksgiving meal recipes in the days to come but, let’s be honest, there will be lots of those in floating around. But what to make with leftovers? Now that’s a different story! And, if you’re like me and Kelsey (who recently shared her recipe for Thanksgiving leftover Turkey Bolognese), you know that leftovers are the best part! Especially when you’re inspired to do more than just recreate your Thanksgiving meal over and over… and over again.

One of my favorite meals made with turkey is Turkey Picadillo, a lighter version of the classic Cuban beef dish. I usually start with raw ground turkey but have adapted my recipe, originally inspired by this Martha Stewart dish, to use cooked turkey, aka leftover Thanksgiving Day turkey.

This comes together in no time, so start by making a pot of white rice. Or, if you want to break with Cuban tradition (and use even more leftovers!), serve this picadillo over mashed potatoes. Either way, you have an easy turkey dinner that’s a fun departure from the flavors of your Thanksgiving Day meal.

(Leftover) Turkey Picadillo

Serves 4


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 4 teaspoons coriander
  • 4 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 3 1/2 cup chopped up leftover turkey*
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 heaping tablespoons raisins
  • 1 cup chopped pimento-stuffed green olives
  • salt and pepper
  • our favorite hot sauce, optional


  1.  Heat olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium flame. Add onion, garlic, peppers, cumin, oregano and coriander. Sautee until spices are fragrant, onion and garlic are soft and caramelized in spots.
  2. Push vegetables to the sides creating an open space in the middle of the pot. Add tomato paste and “toast” for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Stir in broth, wine, turkey, bay leaf, raisins, olives, salt and pepper. Cook for about 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, bringing all of the flavors together and allowing most of the liquid to cook off. Remove bay leaf and season with salt, pepper and a couple of shakes of hot sauce to taste. Serve!

*Note: You can chop up leftover turkey with a chef’s knife or, do as I did, and pulse the cooked meat in a food processor a few times. Works like a charm!

Article Posted 6 years Ago
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