Avoid The Post-Feast Meal Horrors: How Long Does Thanksgiving Dishes Last and What to Do with It

Nov 25, 2015 12:40 PM EST | By Florence May P. Jose

Behind every busy mind preparing for Thanksgiving dinner, there creeps around unanswered questions about what to do with leftovers the following day. Despite everybody's affection with food, there will always be Thanksgiving leftovers that are bound to be stored and sit at the bottom of the fridge, waiting to be remembered and eaten again, which is most of the time, never again. 

According to CNN, cooked food will last for about 2-3 days when stored in the fridge. Putting it in the freezer would definitely make it last longer, but the taste will not be as delicious.

Instead of wasting pounds of uneaten turkey meat and heaping servings of side dishes, let the food reclaim its glory by transforming them to these tasty post-Thanksgiving dishes that are worth your effort to try.

Try the Ultimate Post Holiday Comfort Food made by Tyler Florence from the Food Network:


8 slices stone-milled rye artisan bread, about 1/2-inch thick

5 to 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1/4 cup store-bought apple butter

1 pound sliced fresh roasted deli turkey (or in this case, last night's main act)

1/2 pound brie cheese, thickly sliced

1 bunch arugula, stems trimmed


Spread each of 4 slices of bread with 1/2 tablespoon of butter.Now spread each with 1 tablespoon of the apple butter.Top each slice of bread with a couple of slices of turkey, cover that with 2 to 3 slices of brie (enough to cover the turkey), and finally, arrange 2 to 3 arugula leaves on top. Spread the remaining 4 bread slices with 1/2 tablespoon of butter and lay them, buttered sides down, over the cheese; press gently.

Heat a large cast-iron or other heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and let it melt to evenly coat the bottom of the pan. Add as many sandwiches as will comfortably fit (either 2 or 4) and cook 2 to 3 minutes until the bread is golden brown and the cheese begins to melt. Flip and cook 2 to 3 more minutes to brown the bread. (Add another tablespoon of butter and cook the remaining sandwiches, if you need to.) Cut the sandwiches in half and serve hot. 

You can find more from the Food Network's Thanksgiving Leftovers Menu!

Whatever you decide to do with the leftovers, the key is in storing them properly. You can keep the meat to make soups or the stuffing for pot pies but if the didn't preserve them correctly, they may end up spoiling.

Here are some tips and hacks on how to properly store our Thanksgiving food for future cooking endeavors by StillTasty.com:

1.Aside from putting them in refrigerators, we should always see to it that the container is clean. Locking the food in with some bacteria is not a good combination any given time.

2.  Refrigerate leftover Thanksgiving turkey, stuffing, gravy and other cooked side dishes within two hours of serving. It's okay to place warm food in the refrigerator.

3. Carve leftover turkey meat off the bones before refrigerating. Place the leftover turkey and stuffing in separate containers.

4. Divide leftover turkey and other cooked dishes into smaller portions and refrigerate or freeze in covered shallow containers for quicker cooling.

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