If you’re wondering what to do with your leftovers after Thanksgiving, here’s a great way to repurpose all that turkey, gravy, and mashed potatoes. This turkey shepherd’s pie is a one-skillet dish that’s easy to make and guaranteed to be gobbled up.
I love recipes that start in the skillet AND get baked in the skillet as well. For this one, you simply start with onions sautéed in a little olive oil, and then add peas, carrots, and corn.
After adding chopped turkey and gravy to the vegetables, you just top the whole thing with big dollops of billowy mashed potatoes.
Add a little cheddar on top if that’s your thing, and stick the whole thing in the oven for 30 minutes.
And voila! Instant post-Thanksgiving dinner.
Serve it with a little extra gravy and cranberry sauce or chutney on the side and you’ll keep those Thanksgiving flavors going just a little bit longer. Bon appétit!
Leftover Turkey Skillet Shepherd’s Pie
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion (about 1 1/2 cup chopped)
- 2 large carrots (about 2 cups chopped)
- 2 cups corn kernels (frozen is fine)
- 1 1/2 cup green peas (frozen is fine)
- 3 cups cubed cooked turkey meat
- 1 1/2 cup gravy
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 5 to 6 cups mashed potatoes (about 6 medium large potatoes, cooked)
- 3/4 cup milk
- 4 Tbsp butter
- 1 cup (4 oz) grated sharp cheddar (optional)
- Dash of paprika or red pepper flakes (optional)
- Pour the olive oil in a large 10 to 11 inch cast iron skillet and sauté the onions on medium heat for a few minutes, until they start to soften. Add the chopped carrots and cook for about 5 minutes or until the carrots are soft but still slightly crunchy. Add the peas and corn, chopped turkey, and gravy, a little salt and pepper to taste (if your gravy is already salty, be careful not to over-salt). Mix gently, and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
- In a large bowl, prepare the mashed potatoes. If you're using leftover mashed potatoes that already have milk and butter in them, you can omit the milk and butter in this recipe, or use just a little bit to "revive" the potatoes and make them fluffy again. Be careful not to "over-mash" them or they can release too much starch and become gluey. If using cooked potatoes, use a potato masher or potato ricer to mash them up well with the butter (use melted butter if your cooked potatoes are cold) and the milk. If you find that they are dry, add more milk and butter, a little at a time. It's worth taking the time to get perfectly moist and fluffy mashed potatoes for this recipe.
- Once your mashed potatoes are fluffy, place them in dollops all over the surface of the vegetable and turkey mixture. Gently spread them to cover up any gaps. Add the grated cheddar, if using, and sprinkle a little paprika or red pepper flakes on top.
- Place the skillet in a 375 oven for 30 minutes until the gravy is bubbling up the sides. Before removing skillet from the oven, you can switch to the broil setting for a few minutes so that you get a nice golden top. Allow your shepherd's pie to cool and set for around 15 minutes before serving.
Note 1: Your mashed potatoes will likely come right up to the brim of the skillet, and when the gravy bubbles, it may spill out of the sides. Placing a baking sheet on the rack below the skillet will help collect any bits of escaped gravy and save them from burning at the bottom of your oven.
Note 2: If you prefer, you can bake this in a 9 x 9 inch baking dish.
Yield: 8 servings
Aube Giroux is a food writer and filmmaker who shares her love of cooking on her farm-to-table blog, Kitchen Vignettes.
Aube is a passionate organic gardener and home cook who likes to share the stories of how food gets to our dinner plates. Her work has been shown on television and at international film festivals. Her web series was nominated for a 2014 James Beard Award. In 2012, she was the recipient of Saveur Magazine’s Best Food Blog award in the video category.