Turkey Savings

Kelly Ann Butterbaugh

There are dozens of ways to make every penny of the Thanksgiving turkey count. Enjoy the holiday savings, whether you're the cook or the one who takes home the leftovers.


Buying the Turkey

Many stores offer programs that add up points towards free turkeys. While it may be too late this year to acquire the main course free of charge, look now for the stores that offer these plans and note how their qualifying program works. Then, sign up next year in time to take advantage of their offer. Stores with club card programs often give more than one card per account. Keep one for yourself and split the others among the family. Give a card to your mother-in-law, your sister, and your aunt and invite them all to the Thanksgiving meal. With everyone shopping at the store the points accumulate quickly.

There are some areas to watch on these free programs. Often the turkeys offered aren't the tastiest choices in the store. Ask about an alternative award. One local chain offers the choice of a free turkey of their choice or a reduced price on any turkey in the store. Others are known to offer an alternative dish such as a frozen lasagna which can be saved for another family get together. Either way, it's a good deal.


Cleanup the Dishes and the Savings

While cleaning up the kitchen, pack up the savings. The dog may not be happy, but your wallet will be. In one large foil pan, suitable for freezing, combine most of the meal's leftovers. Even the tiniest morsels won't go to waste. Add a generous helping of turkey (for those who aren't fans of dark meat, this is a great way to use it.) Pour any leftover gravy onto the meat. Now, add the leftover vegetables. Cover the pan with foil, slip it into a plastic bag, and freeze it. When the taste of turkey has left the palate, defrost the dish. After removing the cover, add a refrigerated pie crust (the roll out type in the refrigerator section) to the top. Brush with butter and bakeinstant pot pie. A very tasty twist on the pie dough is to replace it with several layers of Phyllo dough. Unroll each layer, basting with melted butter between each layer. It's not as difficult to work with as its reputation claims.


While you're scraping the plates, there are other leftovers that can be put to good use tomorrow. Save a significant amount of turkey for sandwiches or the traditional leftover options. Particularly save leftover biscuits as well as yams and potatoes.

The Day After

It's the morning after the big meal, and while some are shopping others may be decorating for the next holiday. Tempt them with some tasty leftover dishes. Your family will thank you for skipping the leftover turkey sandwiches today.

Use yesterday's leftover biscuits to make mini egg and sausage sandwiches in the morning. Scramble the egg and cut it into small squares. The biscuits can be heated by placing them on the skillet for a minute. Then, add the egg, a slice of sausage, and melted cheese.

For lunch or a quick evening meal, turn those leftover potatoes into potato pancakes. Mash the potatoes and yams into patties adding butter to the outside. Then, on a skillet brown each side.

About The Author: Kelly Ann Butterbaugh is a freelance writer who regularly contributes to a variety of magazines and has written a history book for middle readers. Visit her website for writing help, lesson plans, history fun, or work for hire at http://www.kellybutterbaugh.com

November 21, 20070 found this helpful

For leftover turkey potpies, I use the leftover stuffing on top. It tends to get crunchy again and works beautifully. I also always make turkey stock with the bones and any leftover slivers of meat. I just add water right to the roasting pan after everyone has eaten and let it simmer for a few hours.

Oh, and brining will make even the cheaper frozen turkeys taste better. I also often look for fresh turkeys to be marked down a day or so after Thanksgiving. Because they are marked fresh, they have to sell them quickly before they go bad. I just pop it into my own freezer until I am ready to cook it again.

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November 23, 20070 found this helpful

I put the turkey bones and anything else left over in the roasting pan into a kettle and add water and cook for about an hour. Strain & let it cool . I pick the bones and anything else that's not edible to trash. I take any meat and dressing that came off the bones and add any turkey we get tired of eating after a few days to the stock, bring to boil add egg noodles and make a batch of dumplings from bisquick or jiffy mix and you one filling meal.

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