Leftover Turkey Burritos

It’s the day after Thanksgiving, and you’re staring at a mountain of leftover turkey. Instead of making a classic turkey sandwich, why not get creative and turn those leftovers into mouth-watering turkey burritos?

This easy and delicious recipe will help you transform your Thanksgiving turkey into a scrumptious meal that can be enjoyed at any time of the day.

The beauty of a turkey burrito lies in its versatility. You can customize your leftover turkey burritos with your favorite ingredients and flavors, ensuring a satisfying meal that everyone will love. Plus, this simple recipe provides an excellent opportunity to make use of other Thanksgiving leftovers, like stuffing and cranberry sauce. And, not only will these turkey burritos taste fantastic, but they also contain a variety of nutritional benefits.

So, go ahead and grab your leftover turkey, some tortillas, and other tasty ingredients you have lying around to make these delicious and comforting turkey burritos. With a clear and straightforward recipe to follow, you’ll be satisfying your post-Thanksgiving cravings in no time.

Leftover Turkey Preparation

What to Do with Leftover Turkey? Make Burritos! Simple, Quick, Easy to Make Ahead or Freeze

When it comes to using leftover turkey for your delicious Turkey Burritos, it’s important to prepare the turkey meat properly. In this section, we’ll cover two methods of reheating and preparing your cooked turkey meat: Using Microwaves and the Broiling Method.

Using Microwaves

Microwaving is a convenient and quick way to reheat leftover turkey. Follow these steps to ensure your turkey meat is heated evenly and maintains its original texture:

  1. Cut the turkey: Start by cutting the leftover turkey into small, even-sized pieces. This will help the meat to heat uniformly.
  2. Choose a microwave-safe container: Place the cut turkey pieces in a microwave-safe container with a lid. You can also cover the container with microwave-safe plastic wrap, leaving a small vent for steam to escape.
  3. Add moisture: To prevent the turkey from drying out, add a small amount of liquid, like chicken broth or water, to the container. Just a few tablespoons should do the trick.
  4. Use medium heat: Heat the turkey on medium power (50%) in your microwave. This gentle heating prevents the turkey from overcooking and becoming dry or rubbery.
Cook TimeAmount of Turkey
2-3 minutes1 cup
4-6 minutes2 cups

Remember to stir the turkey halfway through the heating process, checking the temperature to ensure it reaches 165°F (74°C).

Broiling Method

If you prefer to broil your leftover turkey, the process is easy and results in deliciously browned meat. Follow these simple broiling steps:

  1. Preheat your broiler: Before you begin, preheat your oven’s broiler to high.
  2. Cut the turkey: Just like with the microwave method, start by cutting the turkey into even-sized pieces.
  3. Line a baking sheet: Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy cleanup and to protect your pan from the broiler’s high heat.
  4. Arrange the turkey: Place the turkey pieces on the foil-lined baking sheet in a single layer.
  5. Broil the turkey: Transfer the baking sheet to the oven and broil on high heat for 3-5 minutes, or until the edges of the turkey pieces are browned and crispy. Keep a close eye on them, as broilers heat quickly and can burn the meat if left unattended.

The reheated turkey meat can now be used as a filling for your Leftover Turkey Burritos. Enjoy this creative and tasty way to make use of your Thanksgiving roast turkey leftovers.

Burritos Ingredients and Condiments

3 Tasty Burrito Recipes using Leftover Turkey

Filling Ingredients

For the filling of these delicious Leftover Turkey Burritos, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup of chopped turkey
  • 1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large bell pepper, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup of cooked black beans
  • 1 cup of cooked corn
  • 1 cup of leftover mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes
  • 1 tsp of ground cumin
  • 1 tsp of chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp of freshly ground pepper

To begin, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and bell peppers, then sauté until they are tender. Next, mix in the garlic, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Finally, stir in the turkey, beans, corn, and mashed potatoes. Cook until everything is heated through.

Optional Toppings

Feel free to customize your Leftover Turkey Burritos with your favorite toppings. Here is a list of suggested toppings to make your burritos even more tantalizing:

  • Shredded cheese (such as cheddar cheese or Mexican blend cheese)
  • Sour cream or cream cheese
  • Salsa (tomato-based or green)
  • Sliced avocado or a dollop of guacamole
  • Chopped cilantro
  • Refried beans
  • Leftover gravy
  • Leftover cranberry sauce
  • Sauteéd or steamed veggies (such as green beans or bell peppers)
  • Your favorite hot sauce

Once you have your filling and toppings prepared, assemble your Leftover Turkey Burritos using large flour tortillas. Spread a layer of filling onto each tortilla and then add your desired toppings. Fold the tortilla to enclose the filling, making sure to tuck in the sides as you fold. Enjoy your flavorful and satisfying Leftover Turkey Burritos!

Recipe Execution

Copycat Mad Mex GOBBLERITO ~ Leftover Thanksgiving Turkey Burrito Recipe

Preparing the Filling

Start by preparing your filling. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium heat. Add your ground turkey and cook it until it’s no longer pink. Next, add your favorite seasonings, such as salt, pepper, and any other spices you enjoy, to taste. To make the filling more flavorful, stir in about 1/2 cup of chicken broth. Simmer the mixture for a few minutes to let the flavors meld.

Warming the Tortillas

It’s essential to warm your flour tortillas before assembling the burritos. This process helps to make the tortillas more pliable, preventing them from tearing when folding. You can warm the tortillas either by placing them in a microwave for a few seconds or by heating them in a dry skillet over medium heat for about 10-15 seconds per side.

Assembling the Burrito

Now that your filling is ready and your tortillas are warmed, it’s time to assemble the burritos. Spoon a generous amount of the leftover turkey filling onto the center of a flour tortilla. Add any additional fillings you like, such as cooked vegetables, beans, or cheese. To fold the burrito, follow these steps:

  1. Fold the tortilla sides in slightly.
  2. Lift the bottom of the tortilla up over the fillings and tuck it under, creating a pocket.
  3. Continue rolling the burrito away from you, ensuring the sides stay tucked in.

Repeat these steps for each burrito.

Cooking the Burrito

To complete the recipe, heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a clean skillet over medium heat. Place the assembled burritos seam-side down in the skillet to crisp and seal the edges. Cook for a minute or two on each side until the burritos are golden brown.

Enjoy your flavorful, homemade leftover turkey burritos!

Freezing and Reheating

How to Reheat Leftover Turkey for the Best Meat and Crisp Skin

Freezing your leftover turkey burritos is a fantastic way to enjoy them later, and it’s simple to do. To begin, tightly wrap each burrito in aluminum foil or plastic wrap. For added protection against freezer burn, place the wrapped burritos in an airtight container or freezer-safe ziplock bag. Don’t forget to label the container or bag with the date and contents.

Recommended freezing time: Up to 3 months Quick tip: Freeze burritos individually for easy portion selection.

When you’re ready to enjoy your turkey burritos, reheating them is a breeze – and there’s no need to thaw! You can reheat your burritos in either an oven or microwave. Here are the steps for both methods:


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
  2. Remove the burritos from the container or bag and uncover them.
  3. Place the burritos on a baking sheet, seam-side down.
  4. Cover the burritos with aluminum foil.
  5. Heat for 30-45 minutes, or until heated through.


  1. Remove the burritos from the container or bag and unwrap them.
  2. Place the burritos on a microwave-safe plate, seam-side down.
  3. Cover the burritos with microwave-safe plastic wrap or a damp paper towel.
  4. Heat on high for 3-4 minutes, or until heated through. Check at 1-minute intervals to ensure even heating.

Voilà! Your turkey burritos are now ready to be savored once again. Enjoy your reheated leftovers as if they were freshly made, knowing that you have preserved their flavor and quality through proper freezing and reheating methods.

Frequently Asked Questions

What to make with LEFTOVER TURKEY (or chicken) | 3 great recipes!

What ingredients can be used for a turkey burrito filling?

You can create a delicious turkey burrito filling using leftover turkey, black beans, corn, red onion, jalapeño, cilantro, and your favorite spices like cumin and chili powder. Feel free to add other ingredients like sautéed bell peppers, mushrooms, or avocado to enhance the flavor and texture of your burritos.

How can I make a cheesy sauce for turkey burritos?

To make a cheesy sauce for your turkey burritos, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of flour, whisking constantly to create a smooth roux. Gradually pour in 1 cup of milk, while continuing to whisk. Cook for a few minutes, until the mixture thickens. Stir in 1 cup of shredded cheese (such as cheddar, Monterey Jack, or pepper jack) until melted and smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

What is a healthy alternative for store-bought tortillas?

A healthy alternative to store-bought tortillas is homemade whole wheat tortillas. To make them, combine 2 cups of whole wheat flour, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/4 cup of olive oil, and 3/4 cup of warm water in a large bowl. Knead the dough until smooth and let it rest for 20 minutes. Divide the dough into 8 portions and roll each into a thin circle. Cook each tortilla on a hot, ungreased skillet for about 1 minute per side.

How to store and reheat leftover turkey burritos?

Store leftover turkey burritos in an airtight container or wrap them individually in aluminum foil and place them in the refrigerator. They can last up to 3-4 days when refrigerated. To reheat, preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C) and bake the foil-wrapped burritos for 15-20 minutes, or until warmed through. Alternatively, you can microwave them for 1-2 minutes, but the tortillas may become soft and lose their crispness.

Can I use ground turkey instead of shredded turkey?

Yes, you can use ground turkey instead of shredded turkey in your burritos. Brown the ground turkey in a skillet, breaking it up with a spatula as it cooks, and season with your preferred spices. Once fully cooked, drain any excess liquid, and use it in place of shredded turkey in your burrito filling.

What side dishes go well with turkey burritos?

Several side dishes can complement turkey burritos, such as cilantro-lime rice, refried beans, a simple green salad, or a serving of guacamole with tortilla chips. Additionally, you can serve salsa, sour cream, or pico de gallo on the side for extra flavor and dipping options.

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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
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