Whether you are looking for things to do with your leftover turkey or just an easy healthy recipe, you can’t go wrong with this Walnut Turkey Cranberry Salad. Packed with protein and healthy fats, it’s great to scoop onto over mixed greens or have in a sandwich. It’s a gluten-free option too (just double check the mayo label).
This is probably the best time of year to come up with recipes for the leftover turkey you are likely to have after your Thanksgiving meal. In addition to this recipe, here are a few other ideas:
- Shred some turkey for a quesadilla. I like to keep it healthy with only a tiny amount of cheese and mostly veggies.
- Make a turkey omelet. So many great veggies to mix in.
- Make a delicious turkey based soup – Substitute turkey in this Beef and Vegetable Stew.
- Turkey would also be a great substitute in this recipe for Tuna Stuffed Avocado Boats
What makes this Walnut Turkey Cranberry Salad Healthy?
Health Benefits of Turkey
It’s packed with protein! Just one serving gives you about 65 percent of your recommended daily protein. Did you know that there are about 32 grams of protein in only a 4 ounce serving of turkey? Pretty cool, huh? That makes is an excellent source of essential amino acids. Have this turkey salad for lunch and you practically have your daily protein set for the day. It’s the perfect lean meat for a healthy diet. Other benefits:
- A good source of iron, zinc, potassium and phosphorus.
- Contains vitamin B6 and niacin, which are both essential to provide the body with energy
- Contains the amino acid tryptophan, producing serotonin, which helps strengthen the immune system
According to Livestrong.com
“A little-known health benefit of turkey is that it contains trace minerals thought to aid in cancer prevention. Turkey contains selenium, which is essential for the healthy function of the thyroid and immune system. Selenium also has an essential role to play in your antioxidant defense system, helping to eliminate cancer-friendly free radicals in the body.”
Health Benefits of Cranberries
Dried cranberries provide an easy way to incorporate fruit into your diet. Most have added sugar so you need to take that into consideration. They are a good source of fiber and add some natural sweetness to this recipe. 1/3 of a cup is just shy of a daily serving of fruit. They also provide polyphenols, which are nutrients packed with antioxidants. Leftover cranberry sauce makes for a good sandwich spread too, but also contains sugar.
Health Benefits of Walnuts
Walnuts contain healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. They are also a good source of omega-3, an essential fatty acid. This is said to improve brain health and help with mood disorder. In addition, they contain iron, calcium, zinc and selenium. They are also a good source vitamin E and some B vitamins.
Healthy Walnut Turkey Cranberry Salad
a delicious and healthy salad you can use to make sandwiches or scoop over mixed greens. It's a great recipe for leftover turkey around the holidays as well.
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1 cup diced turkey breast
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1 tbsp mayonnaise can use light to reduct calories
- 1 pinch salt and pepper to taste
Simply combine all ingredients in a bowl. You can serve immediately or refrigerate for later.
Grab those turkey leftovers and get creative with how you use it in other recipes. This turkey cranberry salad couldn’t be easier and great to use all year round. Adding celery to this recipe provides extra fiber and crunch. Enjoy!