Christmas leftover recipes

Can’t quite finish off your Christmas dinner? Not sure what to do with the leftovers? No problem… we’re giving you great ways to put your Christmas leftovers to good use. These recipes are simple to make, scrumptious to eat and help prevent waste!

Like last month’s Christmas dinner article, we’ll be covering the key elements that are likely to be left on your plate at the end of the big day.



turkey and leek pie makes a comforting and hearty meal during winter – and is a great way to use up leftover Christmas turkey.


  • Butter for frying
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 large carrots – sliced into lozenges
  • 2 large leeks – sliced into 2cm/¾in pieces, washed
  • 200ml/7fl oz double cream
  • 200ml/7fl oz chicken or turkey stock
  • 500g/1lb 2oz cooked turkey – cut into bite-size pieces
  • 200g/7oz cooked ham – cut into bite-size pieces
  • 10 small mushrooms
  • A pinch cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped tarragon
  • Thyme leaves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 225g/8oz frozen puff pastry, defrosted
  • 1 beaten free-range egg
  • 2 tablespoons of Parmesan


Start by preheating your oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Add butter to a large pan and gently cook the onion over a medium heat. When the onions are soft but not brown, add the carrots and leek to the pan and cook for an extra five minutes.

If the carrots are soft, pour the cream and stock over the mixture and let it simmer until the sauce thickens. Add the turkey, ham, mushrooms, cayenne and herbs then season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper and remove the pan from the heat. Pour the filling into a ceramic pie dish.

Make a lid for the pie and strips to line the rim of the dish by rolling out the pastry. Press the strips onto the rim, splash a little water on them, and press down the lid firmly and brush with the beaten egg. Sprinkle Parmesan over the top of your pie and cook in the oven for 20 minutes until the pastry is golden-brown.


With leftover veg, you can’t go far wrong with a big bowl of warming soup. This recipe is easy to do and only takes 30-45 minutes to cook.


  • 1 tablespoon of sunflower oil
  • 1 medium sliced onion
  • 2 chopped celery sticks
  • 2 medium peeled and cut potatoes – about 350g/12oz total weight,
  • 1 tablespoon of curry paste
  • 1.2l vegetable stock from a stock cube
  • 550g leftover roasted or boiled vegetables, such as Brussels sprout, carrots, parsnips and squash
  • Natural yogurt or crème fraîche for serving


To fry the vegetables, heat the oil in a large saucepan and fry the onion for 5 minutes until golden. Stir in the celery and fry for 5 minutes, then tip in the potatoes and fry for a further 1-2 minutes, stirring often.

Stir in the curry paste, let it cook for a minute or so, then pour in the stock. Bring to the boil and stir well. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the potatoes are tender.

To serve, tip the leftover veg into the pan and warm through for a few minutes. Pour the soup into a food processor or blender and blitz to a smooth purée. Thin down to the consistency you like with hot water or stock (we added 300ml) then taste for seasoning. Cool and freeze, or serve in bowls with spoonfuls of yogurt or crème fraîche swirled on top.


A classic Christmas leftover dish is bubble and squeak.This recipe will allow you to turn any potatoes and vegetables into a scrumptious meal.


  • 1 tablespoon of duck fat, goose fat or butter
  • 4 rashers of chopped streaky bacon
  • 1 finely sliced onion
  • 1 chopped clove of garlic
  • 15-20 cooked and sliced Brussels sprouts or leftover boiled and shredded cabbage
  • 400g of cold leftover mashed potato or cold crushed boiled potatoes


Melt the fat in a non-stick pan, allow it to get nice and hot, then add the bacon. As it begins to brown, add the onion and garlic. Next, add the sliced sprouts or cabbage and let it colour slightly. All this will take 5-6 mins.

Next, add the potato. Work everything together in the pan and push it down so that the mixture covers the base of the pan – allow the mixture to catch slightly on the base of the pan before turning it over and doing the same again. It’s the bits of potato that catch in the pan that define the term ‘bubble and squeak’, so be brave and let the mixture colour. Cut into wedges and serve.


There’s no need to waste your dessert either, here’s a fantastic recipe for fruity brulees that use up leftover Christmas pudding or fruitcake.


  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 375ml double cream
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 60g caster sugar
  • 150g diced fruitcake
  • 4 tablespoon of Demerara sugar


Preheat your oven to 160C/325F/Gas mark 3. Then start with the vanilla pods, splitting them along their length and scrape out the seeds. Drop the seeds and pods in a saucepan along with the milk. Heat them just below boiling point.

The next step is to whisk the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture is thick and pale. Take out any vanilla pods and pour the hot cream over the eggs and sugar – make sure you continue to whisk.

This recipe will make 6 servings, so you’ll want to divide the fruitcake and put into 6 ramekins. Then pour the cream and egg mixture over the top.

To bake your brulees, you can place the ramekins in a roasting tin on top of a tea towel. Before you place them them in the oven, pour hot water three‑quarters of the way up the sides of the ramekins and cover them with foil.

Cook for about 30 minutes until almost set. Remove the ramekins from the tin and leave to cool. Refrigerate for about 3 hours.

To finish, sprinkle the brulees with demerara sugar and pop under a hot grill for around 1 minute so the sugar will caramelise and create a golden look.

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