Autumn Brings the Best Flavors

Reviving Thanksgiving Leftovers: A Creative Approach by Colorado Golf Club's Pastry Chef

Working alongside her mother in the kitchen, young Autumn Fahlenkamp stepped onto her career path as she spoke her first word: “Hot!” She is now Colorado Golf Club’s Pastry Chef and she’s on a mission to carry on the culinary values that she learned from her mother by using what’s already available. 

“There is a gift with cooking that allows me to nourish the people around me that I love, all the while sharing creative ideas and memories together,” Autumn says. 

Because of the amount of leftovers that follows Thanksgiving dinner, Autumn invented ways to revive mushy beiges and dried-out browns into unexpected creations. 

“As time goes on, I think it is important to be more aware of our food waste and the impact we all have on this,” Autumn says. “Making just small steps, like repurposing leftovers, make this task fun and a lot less daunting.”

So after picking at the last round of buttery mashed potatoes, tart cranberry sauce, and savory turkey, seasoned to fill the house with familiar aromas, remember these recipes. Let your taste buds sing with gratitude after the holiday ends. 

From Sweet Potato Pancakes to Cranberry Pumpkin Breakfast Muffins, keep your apron handy and the holiday spirit alive in Thanksgiving’s second act. 

Savory Bread Pudding 

6 cups diced dinner rolls 

2 cups of milk 

2 cups of heavy whipping cream 

½ cup turkey stock

1 tablespoon salt 

2 teaspoons black pepper 

¼ cup finely chopped fresh herbs (thyme, rosemary, etc.)

8 eggs 

1 cup shredded gruyere cheese 

2 cups diced turkey or ham 

1 diced yellow onion 

3 cloves minced garlic


In a large skillet, sauté onion over medium-high heat until the onion is slightly translucent. Add garlic and herbs, cooking just until fragrant. Turn off the heat and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, cream, milk, stock, salt and pepper. Add in sauteed onion, garlic, and herbs. Fold in the bread and stir until the cubes are thoroughly moistened. Let stand for 1 hour or cover tightly and refrigerate overnight. Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a large rectangular baking dish with unsalted butter. Fold the gruyere cheese and diced meat into the bread. Transfer the bread pudding to the greased baking dish, cover loosely with parchment paper and foil on top of the parchment (to keep the pudding from sticking to the foil). Bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 20 minutes, until the top is slightly golden brown and crusty, springing back when touched. Serve warm with gravy.

Black Friday Turkey Melt 

2 slices of crusty bread 

4 ounces of sliced turkey 

6 thin slices of brie cheese

½ granny smith apple, thinly sliced 

5-6 leaves of spinach 

2 tablespoons cranberry aioli 

Cranberry Aioli 

4 tablespoons of mayonnaise 

Zest of 1 lemon 

2 tablespoons of cranberry sauce

Salt and pepper to taste 


Melt butter in a skillet. Place bread slices in the pan. Spread cranberry aioli and top with brie cheese. Layer turkey, apple and greens and grill until bread is slightly browned and cheese is melted. 

Sweet Potato Pancakes 

2 cups all-purpose flour 

2 teaspoons baking powder 

½ teaspoon salt 

1 tablespoon sugar 

1 ½ cup oat milk 

1½ teaspoon cinnamon 

¼ teaspoon nutmeg 

¼ teaspoon ground ginger 

3 large eggs 

2 tablespoons melted butter 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

1 cup sweet potato mash or leftover casserole 

Butter and syrup for serving 


In a large batter bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, spices, sugar and salt. Set aside. 

In a blender, add milk, eggs, vanilla extract, melted butter and sweet potatoes. Then blend until smooth. Add wet ingredients to the dry and mix well. Let the batter rest for about 5-6 minutes. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat and grease the pan. Heat pancakes until slightly browned on each side and cooked through. 

Cranberry Pumpkin Breakfast Muffins 


2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour 

2 cups sugar 

1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 

¼ teaspoon nutmeg 

¼ teaspoon ground ginger 

¼ teaspoon allspice 

1 teaspoon baking soda 

1/2 teaspoon salt 

2 large eggs, lightly beaten 

1 cup canned pumpkin 

1/2 cup vegetable oil 

1 cup dried cranberries 


1/4 cup brown sugar 

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 

½ teaspoon salt 

1 tablespoon butter 

3 tablespoons quick oats


Preheat oven to 350°F. Fill the muffin pan with paper liners. In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, spices, baking soda and salt. Combine eggs, pumpkin and oil; stir into dry ingredients just until incorporated. Fold in dried cranberries. Fill each of the paper-lined cups ¾ full. 

For the topping, combine sugar, flour, oats and cinnamon. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs; sprinkle 1 teaspoon over each muffin. Bake muffins on the middle rack of the oven for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the muffin comes out clean. 

Related Businesses

The Market at River Falls


The Market at River Falls

Potomac, MD

We offer the highest quality products. The food we serve to you is the same food we eat ourselves, feed to our children and...

See More

Related Articles

See More