Planned Leftovers: Turkey & Dressing (Stuffing) Patties Eliminate Food Waste

by Texas Homesteader ~

After the holiday feast is over, what do you do with all that leftover turkey & dressing? RancherMan loves when I make Turkey & Dressing Patties from them. They’re like Potato Cakes, but using turkey & dressing instead. Come see.

What to do with that leftover turkey & dressing? Make it into turkey & dressing patties. Similar to potato cakes, it's crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside. And so good. No more wasted food! #TexasHomesteader

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What To Do With Leftover Holiday Food?

Aaaah the holidays. A special time of the year when friends and family gather to bask in the warmth of their relationships and enjoy some really good food. So much food in fact that oftentimes the day afterward can leave you scratching your head. Wow, there’s so much food leftover! What do I do with it all??

Well when you’re tired of eating the same leftovers over & over again, the freezer can be your friend. Or my favorite: planned leftovers. That’s where you make a whole new meal from those delicious leftovers.

Take that turkey & dressing for instance. I repurpose them into turkey & dressing patties and RancherMan couldn’t be happier! Crispy turkey/dressing patties topped with gravy is our favorite post-Thanksgiving meal.

They’re similar to potato cakes but with chopped leftover turkey, leftover dressing and a handful of sautéed onions. Mix it all together with an egg, form into a patty, coat with breadcrumbs, lightly fry them into crispy perfection and BOOM!

RancherMan always raves and asks for seconds. (and thirds…LOL) Chalk one up for eliminating food waste deliciously!

Gathering Holiday Leftovers for Turkey/Dressing Patties

(although my family has always called it dressing, some folks call it stuffing instead)

It’s pretty common have leftovers from the two most popular Thanksgiving holiday foods:

If you don’t have leftover dressing just use an inexpensive box of the commercial stuff. I promise it still works great in this recipe.

To make my turkey & dressing patties I take some of the leftover turkey & the dressing I’d made, mince an onion & bell pepper and mix it all together.

I’ll add some bread crumbs and an egg for binding it all together. Then I roll it into about 2″ balls.

The last step for me is to roll each ball in additional bread crumbs (because I love the crunchy outside that gives)

Then I place them in a skillet of hot grease and press lightly with my spatula to slightly flatten them.

What to do with that leftover turkey & dressing? Make it into turkey & dressing patties. Similar to potato cakes, it's crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside. And so good. No more wasted food! #TexasHomesteader

Frying The Turkey/Dressing Patties

I typically prefer to use bacon grease for these because it’s plentiful, it’s free and it adds a nice flavor. But feel free to use whatever grease you prefer when frying these turkey & dressing patties.

I cook the patties on each side until they’re golden brown and then bring them out to drain.

In my Paperless Kitchen I haven’t purchased paper towels in more than a decade. So my method of draining fried foods is to lay them on a plate topped with black & white newspaper. The newspaper soaks up the excess grease and I’m ready to serve.

RancherMan loves these Turkey & Dressing Patties. If you give them a try, I’m guessing you’ll love them too.

Did you make these Turkey & Dressing Patties? Please rate the recipe in your comment below!

5 from 1 vote

Leftover Turkey & Dressing Patties

Leftover turkey & dressing made into a whole new (delicious) meal! What a great way to delight your family while eliminating food waste. It's delicious! #TexasHomesteader

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword dressing, fried, leftover, patty, stuffing, turkey
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 6 people



  • 3 cups Leftover stuffing (can use 1 box stuffing mix, prepared)
  • 2 cups Cooked, chopped turkey
  • 1/2 cup Diced onion
  • 1/4 cup Diced bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup Bread crumbs
  • 1 large Egg
  • optional: Additional bread crumbs to coat



  1. Add all ingredients together and mix to combine thoroughly. (If you don't have leftover stuffing, just make a box of stuffing mix according to the directions & use 3 cups of that prepared dressing instead)

  2. In a skillet heat enough oil to cover bottom of skillet.

  3. Roll turkey mixture into approximately 2" balls.

  4. Roll in additional bread crumbs to coat if desired.

  5. Place in hot oil and press with the back of a spatula to flatten slightly.

  6. Cook until brown and flip to cook other side. Drain cooked patties on paper and serve hot.


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Tagged in     Our favorite Thanksgiving posts. We love leftover turkey & dressing patties. #TexasHomesteader   

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2 thoughts on “Planned Leftovers: Turkey & Dressing (Stuffing) Patties Eliminate Food Waste


    5 stars
    Be very careful draining fried food on newspapers as your food can absorb the ink, plus my Dad and I both are allergic to the ink in newspapers.

    I don’t ever fry anything in oil – but use an air fryer. People, and there are many of us, that have IBS cannot eat anything fried or spicy. Most guests do not come out and tell you about their condition, but can suffer later that evening, and can even end up in the hospital.

    Just something to keep in mind when having dinner guests for the holidays.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I used to be more concerned about drying fried foods on newspapers, but I’ve read that these days 90% of newspaper is printed using soy ink. Still, sometimes I just put the patties on the top of my 2-burner cast-iron griddle instead (with no paper under it). Depends on how greasy I feel it is coming out of the skillet. These turkey & dressing patties sure make good use out of Thanksgiving leftovers – RancherMan loves ’em and asks for them every year. LOL. Happy Holidays to you & yours! ~TxH~


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