Looking for dinner ideas using leftover lunch meat? Here are some recipes and meal ideas to help reduce food waste!
Do you ever buy a huge tub of lunch meat for sandwiches and then the whole family gets bored after a few days?
Or maybe you’ve used up all the slices of bread and now need ways to use up that leftover deli meat.
I’ve been there, multiple times. And it can be so hard to come up with meal ideas!
If you’re looking for a new and exciting way to use up leftover turkey or ham, I’ve got some of my favorite recipes down below. Click the title links to get to the full recipe and grab some new ideas!
What deli meats to use
Honestly, you can switch out any of these for whatever you have, or even your favorite lunch meats. It might change the flavor just a tad, but it won’t make a huge difference.
Here is a huge variety of lunch meats you can easily switch out:
- Roast beef (One of my favorite meats)
- Deli chicken breast
- Italian meats like salami and pepperoni
- Other favorite cold cuts like bologna
- Canadian bacon
Deli Meat Recipe Ideas
Turkey and Brie Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
This is a wonderful meal that uses up holiday leftovers! Just slice up some Brie into long pieces and add a few slices of turkey on top. I added dijon mustard inside, but cranberry sauce would be great as well!
Just cook the sandwich like a regular grilled cheese and serve with your favorite sides. I usually heat up a bag of frozen broccoli florets for some extra nutrition.
The recipe above just has veggies in it, but I’ve used this same recipe before and added diced deli ham. This is great for breakfast OR dinner, and I love adding a little bit of hot sauce on top right before eating.
Honestly, this is one of the best recipes for using up ANY kind of leftover food. Meat, veggies, you name it!
Lunch or Dinner Salad
Salads are super easy dinner options! I try to make sure I have a protein source in each meal, especially if I’m eating a salad. Deli meat is a VERY convenient protein that you can just dice up and add with your favorite salad toppings.
And I load up my salads! I’ll add hard boiled eggs, cheddar cheese, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, ranch dressing, and usually a carb like rice or quinoa. Salads are really a great way to get in all your nutrients in one meal.
A breakfast OR dinner idea, a quiche is an easy meal and like the egg cups above, quiches are one of the best ways to use up any kind of leftovers in your fridge!
One of my favorite things to do with pizza dough is to make calzones! I’ve done all sorts: Pizza, taco, even a breakfast calzone.
This recipe is for a Ham and Cheese Calzone, although you could probably call it a Hot Pocket. Either way, it’s much bigger and more filling than what you can find in the freezer section!
And did I mention these are freezer friendly? You can take them into work for an easy lunch!
Ham and Cheese Sliders
Hawaiian rolls make the cutest little sandwiches, and I love adding ham and swiss to them for an easy sandwich idea. Making a big batch to feed a crowd? Here’s how much deli meat you can expect to use.
Did you know you can freeze deli meat and sandwiches? I froze these subs for easy dinners and it worked out really well. I used a few slices of lunch meat and a slice of cheese, and even put some mayo on it.
Sometimes the meat can make the bread soggy, so I recommend dabbing the meat with a paper towel to get rid of excess moisture.
Mac and cheese is a family favorite here, and you can make it a more protein-packed meal by adding some meat!
The recipe above uses leftover spiral ham, but you can easily replace it with the same amount of ham lunch meat. Plus, this is freezer friendly!
This could be used as either a dinner or breakfast idea. And like the mac and cheese above, you can use deli ham instead of the spiral ham. It just uses frozen hash-brown potatoes, sour cream, cheese, garlic powder, and a few other key ingredients.
Did you find some great uses here? A package of deli meat doesn’t have to be boring anymore! Leave a comment and tell me: What are some of your favorite easy dinner ideas using lunch meat?
Jaime is a Nutrition Coach and professional writer. She enjoys cooking easy meals, running, and learning more about food.
Jaime specializes in helping women with ADHD learn to meal plan and cook healthier meals without getting overwhelmed.