The ghost of Christmas dinner

Become as stuffed as your turkey with these Christmas leftover ideas from Grace Dean.

Grace Dean
12th December 2016
Christmas Day is a magical time. From waking up early and sipping coffee in your cosy dressing gown with the fire roaring, to eagerly dishing out present to your relatives, to watching the Christmas specials in the evening with a glass of Eggnog in hand, the big day is full of laughter, happiness and joyful memories. However, among most families, especially those with ravenous teenagers, the countdown to 25 December is based on the idea of having a top-notch roast to beat all others. To allow that tasty experience to last past the 25th, here are some tips for using up leftovers that will make every day as magical as Christmas.


Obviously the first idea many people have is the classic Christmas sandwich. Turkey, stuffing, veg, cranberry sauce…bung it all some fresh seeded bread in and it will make a Boxing Day feast fit even for a king. Post-Christmas food needs to be quick, easy and substantial, while we’re all still suffering from Christmas gluttony and need a filling meal to stop us from snacking on Terry’s Chocolate Oranges between meals. Turkey curry is also a great way to use up leftovers if your tastebuds are tired of roast dinners, and are a good way to use up the leftover veg too.

Cranberry Sauce

Aside from having a fantastically festive cranberry and brie sandwich, there are a surprising amount of uses for leftover cranberry sauce. Stir into cream cheese with melted white chocolate and sugar to make a fantastic cheesecake filling, or add to the filling of an apple crumble to add a particularly festive twist. Have a look on Google to see the array of salad dressing you can make using cranberry sauce, particularly suitable for adding a zing to a sweet salad with walnuts, grapes and cheese.


Leftover veg often seems a bit boring. A fridge full of cold carrots, broccoli and sprouts (if you can stomach them) may not seem like a hotbed of creativity, but using some other staple kitchen cupboard ingredients you can whip up a treat. Boil in hot water with an array of herbs, blend, and top with some leftover cheese from the cheese board, and you have a vitamin-packed soup to kick any Christmas lethargy, and it is also perfect to bring in a flask when going on lovely snowy festive walks with the family. To turn into something even heartier, you could stew the veg with pearl barley and leftover sausage from the pigs in blankets, and make a delicious flavourful stew, perfect served with crunchy bread rolls.


If you’re like me and you love lashings of custard with your festive deserts then having leftover custard in the fridge is a slim, yet very exciting, possibility. If you are fortunate enough to have some, then it’s the perfect accompaniment to a quick and easy cinnamon bread and butter pudding, or if you have any pre-rolled pastry in the fridge then it takes just minutes to make delicious nutmeg-topped custard tarts to rival Greggs’.

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AUTHOR: Grace Dean
Editor-in-Chief of the Courier 2019/20, News Editor 2018/19, writer since 2016 and German & Business graduate. I've written for all of our sections, but particularly enjoy writing breaking news and data-based investigative pieces. Best known in the office for making tea and blasting out James Blunt. Twitter: @graceldean

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