5 Healthy Meals to cook with your Christmas dinner leftovers

Read time: 4 Minutes

And like that, Christmas is over! But your fridge is full of all those too-good-to-throw-out leftovers that you really can’t let go to waste! But it’s not just about turkey sandwiches, or bubble and squeak. Why not mix things up a little? That’s why we’ve came up with some inspirational (and less guilt ridden) dishes that you can cook up for the week after Christmas.

Spicy vegetable egg fried rice

Spicy vegetable egg fried rice


  • Carrots
  • Sunflower oil
  • Cabbage
  • 2 eggs
  • Spring onions
  • Frozen peas
  • Chillies
  • Soy sauce

Heat up some chillies and garlic with oil, then drain. Add some carrots and stir-fry until tender. Add in your cabbage and cook before throwing in your cooked basmati (or leftover rice if you have some). Push your rice to one side of the pan and add the two eggs into the cleared space to scramble until set. Mix in your onions, peas and a bit of soy sauce. Stir-fry everything until the peas are hot.

Chicken, kale & sprout stir-fry

How to use leftover kale


  • Curly kale (shredded)
  • Sesame oil
  • 25g fresh peeled ginger
  • Handful of brussels sprouts, cut into quarters
  • Lime
  • Soy sauce
  • 2 chicken breasts, skin removed
  • White wine vinegar
  • Soba noodle

Cook the noodles as per the instructions on the package, drain and leave to the side. Heat up your wok or frying pan and add kale with some water to cook until wilted. Cool under water to keep the colour.
Add half the oil and cook the chicken strips until browned. Remove and set to the side. Heat the remaining oil and fry ginger, pepper and sprouts until they have softened. Add in your chicken, kale and noodles. Tip in the soy, vinegar and enough water to create a sauce that clings to the ingredients. Add some lime zest to serve.

Turkey Thai Green Curry

Green curry made with Christmas leftovers


  • 2 tsp of Thai Green Curry paste
  • 400g turkey leftovers
  • 2 peppers
  • Spring onions
  • Fresh coriander
  • Fish sauce
  • Baby sweetcorn & green beans (if they are handy)

Cut up your turkey into bite size chunks and sauté in 1 tbsp of oil. Add in your Thai green curry paste and let sizzle for 1 minute.  Add in some coconut oil (instead of getting reduced fat, add half a can of full fat and mix with water). If you want extra colour, add in 100g of green beans and baby sweetcorn to the dish. If your short on green veg then use some leftover peas. Flavour with some fish sauce. Cut up two peppers and serve on top with chopped coriander.

Vegetable soup

Vegetable soup

This is a straight forward, filling and light option. Throw all those leftover vegetables into a pan with some low salt stock, simmer and blend. Serve as a hearty soup with some wholemeal bread for boxing day lunch or starters.

Turkey Stew

Making turkey stew out of leftovers


  • Some olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 chillies
  • Leftover turkey cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 1 tbsp of tomato puree
  • Vegetable stock
  • Roast potatoes
  • Carrots

Add a bit of oil to the casserole dish and head the garlic, onion and chillies until they are softened.
Next, add in your turkey pieces until browned slightly (this shouldn’t take too long). Stir in a tbsp of tomato puree and pour in the vegetable stock. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer on a low heat. You can add your leftover veg here, or you can serve with leftover potatoes and carrots, or rice if you have any.

A lot of our popular Christmas foods are wholesome, filling and good for you in moderation. Have you ever created any inspirational guilt-free dishes with your Christmas leftovers? We would love to hear about it. Join the conversation at #MyIrishLife or leave a comment.

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Author: Irish Life

Irish Life is one of Ireland’s leading financial services companies with over 1 million customers. For over 75 years, we’ve been helping people in Ireland look after their life insurance, pension and investment needs.

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