What to do with Shabbat Leftovers

November 3, 2014

8 min read


How to transform your leftovers into a fresh, delicious meal.

I get asked this all the time: “What can I do with Shabbos leftovers that appear like a fresh new meal?” Here are just a few ideas that will taste amazing and emerge as a fresh dinner menu. Don’t worry; I won’t give away the secret.

What to do with Leftover chicken or steak

  • Pesto or Salsa Chicken: Smother leftover chicken with pesto sauce or salsa, you can buy one. Let it sit for a few hours. Rewarm in the sauce. Serve in a baked white or sweet potato or over basmati rice.

  • Chicken Chili: Shred or chop chicken or turkey. Make a simple chili and add chicken in the end.

Simple Chili

Simple Chilli

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup diced green bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 (14½-ounce) cans no-salt-added, stewed tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained
  • ¼ cup nonfat sour cream alternative

Coat a Dutch oven or 5 quart stock pot with cooking spray, Heat oil over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes. Add water and next 6 ingredients, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer, uncovered, 30 minutes. Add reserved leftover chicken, turkey or steak. Ladle into individual soup bowls, top with pareve cream.

Wine simmered chicken in a pita

Saute 1 sliced onion and 2 sliced red or yellow peppers with 2 cloves minced garlic in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Cut chicken into strips and add to pan. Add ½ cup white or red wine, boil until wine is reduced by half. Serve over rice or couscous or in fluffy pita.

Dijon Tarragon Chicken Salad

Chop leftover chicken into pieces, add

  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon white wine
  • ½ teaspoon tarragon
  • splash of lemon juice
  • 1 cup broccoli or tomatoes

Toss and refrigerate until ready to serve. Keeps for two days in the refrigerator. Serve with crackers or on a green salad.

Chicken Tacos

In a large sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons canola oil. Add 1 chopped onion and 1 chopped red or green pepper and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add a package of taco seasoning, then shredded or sliced chicken or steak. Add a little water and/or tomato sauce. Serve warm in taco shells or tortillas.

Beef and Broccoli with Ramen Noodles

Serves 6

This tastes like Chinese takeout but is simple and inexpensive to make at home. It’s a great one pot dinner and comes together in just a few minutes.

  • Two 3-ounce packages ramen noodles
  • 1 pound boneless skirt steak (or leftover chicken or steak, reserve for end of recipe)
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 5 tablespoons plus1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 4 cups broccoli florets or cauliflower or zucchini (from 2 to 3 heads)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger (about one 1/2-inch piece)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced, plus more for garnish, optional
  • Toasted sesame seeds, for garnish

Cover the noodles with hot water in a large bowl and place a small plate on top to keep them submerged; set aside to soak for 5 minutes. Drain the noodles well and set aside. Discard the flavor pouches or reserve for another use.

If using fresh beef, cut the beef crosswise into 2- to 3-inch pieces and then rotate a quarter turn and slice thinly lengthwise across the grain, about 1/4-inch thick.

Stir together the chicken broth, teriyaki sauce, cornstarch, sugar and sesame oil in a small bowl or measuring cup and set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil in a wok or a large nonstick skillet over high heat until lightly smoking. Add half of the beef and cook, stirring once, until brown on the outside and still juicy on the inside, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to a large bowl. Repeat with an additional 1 tablespoon vegetable oil and the remaining beef.

Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in the same skillet over high heat. Add the broccoli or other vegetable and cook, stirring frequently, until the broccoli just starts to soften, about 1 minute. Reduce the heat to medium and push the broccoli to the side. Add 1 teaspoon vegetable oil, the ginger and garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add 1/4 cup water to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until mostly evaporated, about 1 minute. Stir the chicken broth mixture briefly and add it to the skillet. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 1 minute. Add the beef OR RESERVED/LEFTOVER CHICKEN and stir to coat. Transfer the to a large serving platter, leaving room for the noodles.

Wipe out the skillet and heat the remaining 2 tablespoons vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the ramen noodles and green onions and cook, stirring frequently, until heated through, about 1 minute. Transfer to the serving platter and garnish with additional green onions if desired. Garnish the beef with toasted sesame seeds and serve.

Honey Dijon Chicken

Honey Dijon ChickenHeat a little oil over medium heat. Add 4 cloves minced garlic and 2 shallots, minced and cook until browned. Add ¼ cup Dijon mustard, ½ cup chicken stock, ½ teaspoon thyme and simmer over medium heat until slightly thickened. Add salt and pepper and pour over chicken or steak.

Southwestern Quinoa salad with chicken

Southwestern Quinoa salad with chicken

Serves 10

  • Kosher salt
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons cumin
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons coriander
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups red quinoa
  • 1 (15.5 ounce can) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into small dice
  • 1 cup halved grape tomatoes
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels, microwaved for a few seconds
  • 1 red pepper, cut into small dice
  • 1/3 cup sliced scallions
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • ¼ teaspoon Asian chili-garlic sauce or paste
  • Leftover chicken or turkey, chopped
  • ½ cup toasted pine nuts

Combine 1 teaspoon salt, cumin, coriander and cinnamon in a small bowl.

In a 3-quart saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium low heat. Add salt spice mixture, stir well, and cook for 30 seconds. Add quinoa, stir and add 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a low simmer, cover and cook until quinoa has absorbed all the water, about 20 minutes. Stir, uncover and cool thoroughly.

In a mixing bowl, combine black beans, zucchini, tomatoes, corn, peppers, scallions, cilantro, orange juice, remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, lime juice, garlic, honey, chili-garlic sauce, and ½ teaspoon salt. Stir. Add cooled quinoa and chicken and mix well. The flavors will blend as it sits. Garnish with pine nuts. Can be made a day ahead of time.

Easy Chicken Enchiladas

  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or 2 cups leftover chicken, turkey, or steak
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • ½ green pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 cup tofutti sour cream
  • About 8 corn tortillas1 – 2 cups enchilada sauce (another great kosher Mexican product!)

If preparing raw chicken: Place chicken in a pot with water to cover. Add oregano and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, until chicken is cooked through. Remove chicken from liquid. Cool and shred. Alternatively, shred leftover or prepared chicken, turkey or steak.

In a sauté pan, heat oil. Add onion and green pepper and cook until soft. Mix with shredded chicken. Add spices and tofutti sour cream. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a few tablespoons of mixture (as much as it can hold and still be folded) inside tortillas and roll them up. Pour sauce over, cover and bake for ½ hour to 45 minutes. Garnish with guacamole and serve with Spanish rice.

Lettuce Hand Rolls

Lettuce Hand RollsCombine 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce, 1 ½ teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon brown sugar, 2 cloves garlic, 1 teaspoon ginger, 1 tablespoon sake/mirin/white wine, together. Add chicken/steak and let sit for an hour. Warm sauté pan, heat chicken through, add water chestnuts, some scallions, and mushrooms. Serve in lettuce cups with sticky or coconut rice.

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