Five Waist-Friendly Ways to Use Thanksgiving Leftovers
For many of us, Thanksgiving often lasts longer than one day—and it’s not uncommon for leftovers to supply a few days worth of meals. While it’s perfectly fine to splurge on that once-a-year delicious Thanksgiving feast, the temptation of leftovers might sabotage your plan to get back on track. To avoid the post-Thanksgiving bloat, try these five low-calorie leftover ideas:
1. Slim Down With Salad
Fresh turkey is super-lean and chock-full of protein, making it a perfect salad topper for light lunches. Remove the skin off the turkey to reduce saturated fat and calories, and feel free to use a combination of white and dark meat. I place the roasted turkey atop a salad of baby arugula, caramelized onions, Granny Smith apples, toasted pecans, and Brie cheese. A dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, and Dijon mustard is a perfect accompaniment.
2. Pile Pumpkin on Something Other Than Pie
Pumpkin is a true super food, bursting with beta-carotene for luscious locks and glowing skin. Did you know ½ cup of 100% canned, pure pumpkin contains just 40 calories? For breakfast, I take 2/3 cup nonfat, vanilla Greek yogurt and mix with 1/3 cup pumpkin. Top with a dash of cinnamon and 1-2 tablespoons of slivered almonds. The fiber in the pumpkin will keep you full and satisfied for hours. To turn this into a sweet treat, add 1 tablespoon of mini, semi-sweet dark chocolate chips for a healthy indulgence.
3. Concoct a Turkey Terrific
Turkey Terrific’s have been tradition in my family since we discovered the sandwich on Nantucket Island. While the original consists of turkey, mayonnaise, cranberry sauce, and stuffing on Portuguese bread, I like to put my own healthy spin on this classic. I slash calories by eating my sandwich open-faced, and use a high-fiber, whole-grain bread. Spread a thin layer of cranberry sauce on the bread, add turkey, and top with leftover vegetables, like roasted Brussels sprouts and caramelized onions. Serve with a side salad.
4. A Sweet Treat Using Potatoes!
Like pumpkin, sweet potatoes are a nutrient-rich vegetable with many health benefits. Sweet potatoes are rich in Vitamin A, which can improve eyesight and reduce the risk of cancer. I use this delicious root vegetable to make cinnamon sweet potato fries. Peel the sweet potatoes, slice into ½ inch strips, and place on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Turn potatoes over and bake another 15-20 minutes.
5. Cranberry-Goat Cheese Sliders
This is the perfect pick-me up to satisfy post Thanksgiving cravings. Slice a French baguette and drizzle with 1 teaspoon olive oil. Toast until bread is slightly browned and crispy, and spread a thin layer of goat cheese on top. Drizzle some cranberry sauce on top of the goat cheese and add a few pecans for a crunchy and enjoyable snack.
Let the healthy post-Thanksgiving feast begin!