EC Eats

Here’s what to do with your Thanksgiving leftovers


Thanksgiving marks the start of the most wonderful time of the year: the holiday season. 

College students make their way home to spend time with loved ones, watch football and enjoy heaping piles of delicious food.

But, alas, with any Thanksgiving feast comes Thanksgiving leftovers. 

If your mom is anything like mine, you always return to school with stacks of Tupperware full of leftovers you’ll never have the appetite to finish. Do yourself (and your mom) a favor and use the remaining days of your break to help clear out the fridge. 

I’m sure many of you have seen the famous “Friends episode about Ross’s sandwich made of Thanksgiving leftovers and wondered, “What did he put in that?” Well, I’m here to let you in on the secret. 

The type of bread is up to you, but I personally go for toasted and buttered sourdough. Sourdough’s crisp crust and subtle tanginess make the ideal base for the rest of the ingredients. 

The first thing to apply to your bread is a layer of cranberry sauce. Whether it is jelly from a jar or made fresh, cranberries add just the right amount of bitter-sweetness to your sandwich. 

Next, add the turkey. Although turkey is at the center of every Thanksgiving feast, it’s relatively neutral, making it the perfect candidate to be the layer between the cranberries and the rest of the sandwich. 

This next step is absolutely crucial and requires a great deal of precision and accuracy, so listen close. You’re going to take a third piece of bread and douse it in gravy.

This part of the process makes or breaks your sandwich. You want every inch of that bread to be soaked in gravy. With one small step, your sandwich goes from an average lunch to a meal you wait a full calendar year to devour. 

Where there’s gravy, there must be mashed potatoes. Add some mashed potatoes on top of your gravy bread. Their butteriness and spreadable texture allow for easy application to the soggy layer below. 

Finally, add a casserole (or hotdish, for my fellow Minnesotans) of your choosing. I typically go for my mom’s vegetable hotdish, made up of California blend vegetables, cream of celery soup and topped with crunchy french fried onions. 

Once you’ve done this, take your second piece of bread and close your masterpiece. 

There are countless ways to heat your sandwich. You can microwave the ingredients beforehand, microwave the entire sandwich after it’s assembled, or if you feel fancy, you can use a panini press. 

Trust me, this meal will send you into just as big of a food coma as you were in on the night of Thanksgiving.

Whether you just got back from a long day of Black Friday shopping or you’re having your last home-cooked meal before returning to the world of ramen noodles and Easy Mac, don’t miss your chance to have one of the best sandwiches you’ll eat all year.

Allessi can be reached at [email protected].