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HomeCookbookThe best way to Freeze Leftover Turkey — The Mother 100

The best way to Freeze Leftover Turkey — The Mother 100


What to Do with Leftover Turkey

Fortunate you, with leftover cooked turkey!  Meaning you made certain to have sufficient for everybody to have an awesome meal, and hopefully some subsequent day sandwiches, and STILL had further.  Good.  I all the time plan to make a bigger turkey than mandatory. There are such a lot of issues to make with cooked turkey, it’s an awesome deliberate leftover!

How to Freeze Leftover Turkey

Finest Solution to Retailer Cooked Turkey

First, when attainable, slice the meat from the bone, and use the bones to make inventory.  This can assist you to pack your leftover turkey extra compactly, and scale back the quantity of air contained in the container.  If you wish to freeze leftover entire turkey items, see beneath.

Any uneaten cooked turkey needs to be sealed up and refrigerated inside two hours of serving it.  In case your turkey has sat out for considerably longer, it gained’t maintain as nicely. 

How Lengthy Can Leftover Cooked Turkey Keep within the Fridge Earlier than Freezing?

In case your turkey has been correctly dealt with you possibly can refrigerate and eat it for as much as 4 days.  In case you are planning to freeze it, it’s finest to freeze it inside someday of cooking for optimum texture and style.  Nonetheless, leftover turkey might be frozen after three days and it will likely be positive.   In case your turkey has been within the fridge for as much as three days, you might be good to freeze it, so long as it was in a well-sealed container and hasn’t dried out.

Easy Roasted Thanksgiving Turkey

What Are the Finest Containers for Freezing Turkey?

I like to make use of freezer proof zipper high luggage for freezing turkey, as a result of you possibly can actually press out all the extra air earlier than sealing them.  The zipper high bag packages marked particularly for the freezer are thicker than common zipper high luggage, and undoubtedly higher for freezing.  Additionally contemplate reusable freezer proof luggage.

If you wish to use a freezer proof container, that’s positive.  You wish to ensure the turkey is fairly nicely packed in, once more to cut back the quantity of air within the container which may trigger freezer burn.

How to Freeze Leftover Turkey

No matter container you utilize, please ensure to label it with a everlasting marker.  Write the form of turkey you might be freezing (eg, breast meat), the date you might be freezing it, and for those who like, the quantity within the container (eg, 4 cups turkey or 1 pound turkey).

How Lengthy Can You Freeze Leftover Turkey?

Leftover cooked turkey freezes nicely for as much as 6 months if correctly dealt with, packed and frozen inside 3 days of the unique preparation.  Nonetheless, I prefer to try to use it inside 3 months for finest taste and texture, and to keep away from the opportunity of freezer burn.

The best way to Freeze Leftover Turkey: Clear recommendation with photographs on freezing cooked turkey so you possibly can get pleasure from turkey dinners nicely after the vacations!

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How Do You Stop Freezer Burn?

Freezer burn occurs when air will get into contact with meals.  Be sure to go away as little further room as attainable within the container or bag.

How Lengthy Can You Freeze Leftover Turkey?

Basically cooked turkey might be frozen for as much as 6 months.  After that it will likely be fit for human consumption, however the taste and texture is perhaps lower than ideally suited.  

Cajun Roasted Turkey

The best way to Freeze Turkey Components

If in case you have some leftover legs, wings, or thighs that you simply wish to freeze on the bone, simply ensure to wrap them very nicely in plastic wrap.  Then slide them right into a freezer proof zip high bag, press out any extra air, label the bag and freeze.  I favor luggage for this because it’s simpler to press out further air.  However do ensure to wrap them tightly first – get thicker plastic wrap particularly designed for the freezer in case you are a daily freezer of meals!

How Do You Defrost — or Thaw — Frozen Turkey Safely?

One of the best ways is to position the bag or container within the fridge for at the very least someday, as much as two days in case you are defrosting a bigger amount of turkey.   You can even defrost turkey within the microwave if the container is sufficiently small to have the ability to rotate on the carousel tray which is able to enable it to defrost safely and evenly.   Each microwave is completely different, so it’s best to test your defrost setting to be sure you are doing it within the appropriate method.  Some microwaves allow you to plan your defrosting based on weight, others have extra particular settings.

DO NOT THAW TURKEY OR ANY MEAT AT ROOM TEMPERATURE!  This could enable micro organism to type, which might be harmful, particularly for people who find themselves very younger, very previous, or immunocompromised in any method.

In case you are utilizing the turkey in a soup, stew or casserole, you won’t need to defrost it first.  Learn the recipe, and see if it is smart so as to add it nonetheless frozen.  This may also probably assist maintain it moist and juicy.  Whether it is heating up in a chili, as an illustration, the liquid and different components will assist moisten the turkey because it defrosts and heats by means of.

Leftover Turkey Split Pea Soup

How Do You Reheat Leftover Turkey?

The priority with turkey, as each turkey lover is aware of, is that it might probably dry out when reheated.  I prefer to put the turkey in a baking pan, add a small quantity of turkey or hen broth, cowl the pan with foil, and warmth it gently in a 300°F oven till it’s warmed by means of.  You’ll be able to pour off any remaining liquid from the pan.  

You can even reheat turkey within the microwave, utilizing the carousel tray.  Put the turkey in a microwave secure container, add a little bit of broth, and canopy the turkey with a moist paper towel.    Ensure the tray can rotate within the microwave – if it’s too massive, use the oven.

The best way to Freeze Cooked Turkey

Slice the meat from the bones.

Cajun Roasted Turkey

You’ll be able to cube the meat for those who like, if you understand you might be planning to make use of it in a recipe that requires cubes of cooked turkey.

Place the turkey on a parchment or foil lined baking sheet in a single layer.  Switch to the freezer for one hour, till the turkey is sort of chilled and agency.  This can enable the slices or cubes to remain separate while you freeze them in a bag or container.

Label a freezer proof bag or container with the form of turkey you might be freezing (darkish meat, sliced, cubed) and the date.  Use a everlasting market like a Sharpie.

How to Freeze Leftover Turkey

Switch the turkey to the labeled freezer proof bag or container.

How to Freeze Leftover Turkey

Freeze for as much as 6 months.


Recipes with Leftover Turkey:

Leftover Turkey Hash

Probably the greatest post-Thanksgiving breakfasts ever! Crunchy on the skin, tender on the within, every chew is old-school scrumptious.


Turkey Picadillo

A lighter model of an exquisite Latin American dish.


Turkey Reuben Sandwiches / Sarah Crowder / Katie Workman / themom100.com

This model of one of the vital scrumptious and traditional sandwiches within the sandwich lexicon makes use of turkey for a lighter change of tempo.


Turkey Pot Pie

Brightly coloured greens mingle with satisfying chunks of leftover cooked turkey in one of many easiest however most scrumptious pot pies ever. 


Leftover Turkey Split Pea Soup

Essentially the most comforting, satisfying method to make use of up leftover turkey, together with a easy home made inventory.


Turkey Posole Soup / Photo by Cheyenne Cohen / Katie Workman / themom100.com

That leftover Thanksgiving turkey is put to nice use in a heat, comforting, and really satisfying soup


Turkey Tetrazzini

Leftover turkey blended with sauteed recent mushrooms and a pleasant cream sauce spiked with sherry, sage and parsley is nestled underneath a tacky crunchy bread crumb topping. This casserole is something however boring!




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