It’s nearly Christmas! Yay! Now what to do with those pesky leftovers? Keep it simple and delicious with this leftover turkey, bacon and brussels sprouts macaroni cheese.
How do you feel about the leftover turkey on the day after Christmas? Sick of the sight of it, or eager to use it all up in some fancy (but not too tricky) way? Well, if you’re up for making something with it, that’s just great because I’ve got a wonderfully easy little recipe for you today.
You may be shocked to hear this, from a food blogger an’ all, but we’re taking the easy route this year. We’ve ordered most of our Christmas lunch from a luxury food chain! All we’re going to do is remove the packaging, read the instructions, shove it into the oven… and eat!
Somehow I’m not ashamed to admit this to you. There will be only four of us this year, plus the little one wriggling away inside me at 36 weeks gestation. Oh, did I not tell you? We’re expecting a little one in just a few short weeks!
Which means that I’ll be perfectly content to let ‘someone’ else do all the hard slog for me. I’ll still make mince pies, and this amazing roasted cauliflower mashed potato, and these cheese truffles for Christmas supper, and leave the rest to the real experts!
But hey, guess what – I’m betting we’ll still have turkey leftovers! And this leftover turkey, bacon and brussels sprouts macaroni cheese will be the perfect place to throw them all.
Like macaroni cheese the world over, it’s comforting (a true winter warmer), it’s super quick and easy to make, and those leftover Christmas flavours really do work perfectly in it. Throw in however much meat and veggies you have left, and all the better if there’s a bit of stuffing left over too. I’ve added a pork stuffing before, and it added a really great hit of extra flavour.
Use whatever grated cheese you have hanging around (leftover cheese board, anyone?). I often just use a simple 200 gram bag of grated cheddar (about 2 cups), just because it’s easy, but any mixture of tasty cheese works well.
So who’s doing the cooking at yours this year? Are you going all out slaving over it yourself, or are you letting someone else do the hard slog? What do you normally do with your leftovers?
- 250 grams / 9 ounces (2 cups) dried macaroni
- 40 grams / 1.5 ounces butter
- 6 rashers bacon
- 40 grams / 3 scant tablespoons flour
- 650 ml / 2.75 cups full cream milk
- 200 grams / 7 ounces (2 cups) grated cheese (I used tasty cheddar cheese, but a mixture of whatever you have is great)
- 150 grams / 5.5 ounces leftover turkey (a good couple of handfuls, or however much you have!)
- leftover cooked brussels sprouts, halved (or about 200 grams / 7 ounces raw)
- leftover stuffing (optional)
- Pre-heat the oven to 200C / 390F.
- Cook the macaroni in salted boiling water for about eight minutes. If you’re cooking your brussels from scratch, add them into the water after four minutes. Drain and set aside.
- Melt the butter in a medium to large saucepan and cook the bacon until starting to crisp (8 to 10 minutes). Remove with a slotted spoon, leaving behind the butter and juices.
- Add the flour to the pan and cook, stirring, for a minute or so. Take off the heat and very slowly add the milk. Heat and stir until simmering.
- When the sauce is smooth and thickened somewhat, add about two thirds of the cheese, followed by the macaroni, turkey, brussels, bacon, and stuffing (if using). Stir in well, and season.
- Tip into a medium-sized baking dish, and scatter with the rest of the cheese. Bake for about 20 minutes until bubbling and golden.
Try this with any kind of leftover meat and veggies. You could even fancy it up a bit more by adding mustard and / or herbs.
Why not save this to your easy meals Pinterest board for later? 🙂
Would you like to follow me on Pinterest, too? I’m always pinning tasty food!