Turkey Cranberry Sliders
Need an idea for using up all of the Thanksgiving leftovers? My favorite way to turn the turkey into a whole new meal is to make Turkey Cranberry Sliders. They couldn’t be easier and they are super tasty! Simply fill Hawaiian rolls with turkey, cranberry sauce, your favorite cheese, and you could even add potatoes or stuffing. Top with poppy seed butter, then bake to golden brown perfection. The ultimate way to use Thanksgiving leftovers and feed a crowd!
For this turkey sliders recipe, feel free to use just turkey (or another deli meat variety) and cheese (leaving the cranberry sauce off) for an awesome anytime party snack. Perfect for game day!
One of the main reasons I get so excited for Thanksgiving, besides my pumpkin pie dessert squares, is Black Friday. And these sliders are a Black Friday must! Black Friday is one of my favorite traditions. We’re old school and go shopping the morning after Thanksgiving because this girl needs her beauty rest. But I absolutely love getting up early on Friday, grabbing a white chocolate peppermint mocha and checking gifts off my kiddos’ wishlists, all with the hustle and bustle of the holidays. When we get home and are all just about to drop, I whip up these leftover turkey sliders. It’s the most delicious way to make a new meal out of the leftovers.
How To Use Leftover Thanksgiving Turkey
These Turkey Cranberry Sliders are so good and almost better than the big meal. The sweet and savory combo is so delicious and I’m pretty much a fan of any recipe using Hawaiian rolls.
If you’re looking for more ways to use the leftover turkey, just use any recipe that calls for shredded chicken and swap the chicken out for turkey. This Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup, these Easy Chicken Enchiladas or this Turkey Pot Pie would work great!
Ingredients For Turkey Sliders
There are just a few essential ingredients to make these sliders amazing!
- Hawaiian rolls. I highly recommend using Hawaiian buns. They’re absolutely perfect for baking sliders. The inside of the bread stays soft and tender while the outside of the sliders have an ever-so-slight crispiness.
- Turkey (or another meat option). If you have leftover turkey or even ham, that’s great! But you can make these year round by simply using your favorite deli meat.
- Cheese. Use any favorite cheese. We typically go with Swiss or smoked gouda. So good!
- Cranberry sauce. This ingredient isn’t actually essential. If you don’t have cranberry sauce, use any favorite jam or jelly or don’t use a sauce at all.
- Poppy seed butter. Brush a mixture of butter, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce and poppy seeds over the top of the buns before baking. This butter mixture gives these sliders SO much flavor. It’s a must!
How To Make Leftover Turkey Sliders
Start off by grabbing all of the leftovers, plus a package of Sweet Hawaiian rolls, cheese, butter, and seasonings. If you don’t happen to have leftovers, but you want to make this recipe, you can use sliced deli turkey and store-bought cranberry sauce. Trader Joe’s makes a tasty option! You could also use jam, jelly, or another favorite sauce.
The first step to make these is to slice the Sweet Hawaiian Rolls. You want to keep all of the rolls together. Next, you’re going to start layering the ingredients. Feel free to layer on more leftovers, if you have them. I think sweet potatoes or stuffing would be awesome on these as well. It really doesn’t matter the order you layer ingredients, but I start with the turkey.
Then, spread the cranberry sauce over the turkey. Use as much or little as you like. This is where you would also layer on any additional ingredients, like potatoes or stuffing.
The last layer here is the cheese. You can use any type of cheese. I like a white cheese for these sliders and I’ve used Swiss, Gouda and Provolone. A good smoked Gouda is my favorite.
Last, place the top half of the rolls over the cheese layer. Use a brush to spread the melted butter mixture over the rolls. If you don’t have a brush, you can spoon the melted butter over the rolls. Cook the rolls until cheese is melted and the turkey is heated. I cooked mine with foil over the top for about 15 minutes, to keep the tops from getting too brown. After 15 minutes, take the foil off and continue to cook for another 5-8 minutes.
Remove from the oven and slice into individual sliders and serve immediately. If you have leftover gravy, it makes a great dip for these turkey sliders! Sliders are best served right after being removed from the oven. These don’t store or re-heat very well.
Tips For Turkey Sliders
- These sliders can be assembled up to 4 hours before baking. Store them covered in the fridge until you’re ready to bake and enjoy.
- Turkey sliders are best eaten immediately after they come out of the oven.
- Don’t forget to cover the sliders before baking with foil, so that the tops don’t burn. After 15 minutes, you can uncover the sliders and let them bake for about 5 more minutes and until golden brown.
- This recipe as written makes 12 sliders and most people eat about 2 sliders. You can easily double or triple the recipe to feed a crowd.
While turkey and cranberry are a pretty great pairing on their own, you can add more ingredients or change up the ingredients to these sliders to fit your preferences.
- Spicy. Add pickled jalapeños in between the meat and cheese.
- Bacon. How delicious would bacon taste in these sliders?!
- Italian. Use marinara sauce instead of cranberry sauce and mozzarella cheese. You can even swap the turkey for pepperoni!
More Fall Favorites to Enjoy
If you try this turkey sliders recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and if your family loves it as much as mine does, be sure to give it a five star ⭐️ rating! Also, tag @kimscravings on Instagram with a picture of your creation. It’s so fun to see what you’re cooking! Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to receive more delicious recipes straight to your inbox.
Turkey Cranberry Sliders
- 8 ounces leftover turkey or thick cut turkey deli meat
- 4 large slices Gouda, Havarti, Swiss or Provolone cheese (or other favorite cheese)
- 1 cup cranberry relish or sauce
- 1 package Hawaiian dinner rolls (12 rolls)
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon poppy seeds or Everything Bagel seasoning
- Preheat oven to 375° F. and prepare a 9X13 (or slightly smaller) baking dish with cooking spray.
- Slice Hawaiian buns in half while keeping all of the buns attached to one another. Remove the top buns and set aside.
- Place the bottom buns in the pan. Add the turkey over the buns and top with cranberry relish or sauce, slices of cheese and the tops of the buns.
- In a small microwave safe bowl, mix the butter, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon and seasoning or poppy seeds. Microwave for 30-60 seconds, or until the butter is melted.
- Brush the butter mixture over the top of the buns. Cover with foil and bake at 375°F for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-8 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and slice into individual sliders and serve immediately. If you have leftover gravy, it makes a great dip for these turkey sliders! Sliders are best served right after being removed from the oven. These don't store or re-heat very well.
Did you make this recipe?
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This post was updated with new content October 2020.
I plan on making these for a Christmas party. I want to assemble them the night before and put the dressing on just before I bake them. Do you think that will work?
Yes, that should work fine. Enjoy!
My in-laws family tradition is to have finger food on Christmas Eve so I served these and they were a hit! For vegetarians I made a version with hummus, roasted veggies and cheese. They were delicious too! I found they were great as leftovers if I just popped them in the oven for about 10 minutes. I’ll be serving them for Thanksgiving buffet this year. I buy thick sliced turkey at the deli and it is way easier than cooking a turkey – especially since I am a vegetarian.
This sounds so awesome!! I’m so glad that you’ve made these work great for vegetarians and meat eaters!
These were a hit at Christmas Eve dinner! I used unprocessed sliced Turkey from the deli counter and I was so relieved to let everyone get their turkey fix without the hassle of cooking a Turkey! I served them with bowls of gravy for dipping and I made roasted veggie sliders too. These will likely become a staple of our finger food Christmas Eve. They are a fast and easy way to serve something fun to a large group!
I love it! That sounds fantastic! Merry Christmas!
Is there any change I need to make if I don’t have a cheese cloth? (Turkey is currently is the oven without the cloth)
No, you’ll just be using your cooked turkey that has been sliced.
I made these for a potluck last night. One bit of advice…. Do not add mayonaise. I spread a thin layer on the bottom before adding the turkey and it make the bottom of the roll soggy. They would have been just fine without it. OR… if you do add the mayo, don’t bother baking. Either way, they were tasty… just soggy on the bottom.
So happy to hear you enjoyed and thanks so much for taking time to leave a comment!
delicious, quick and easy!
So glad you loved!
Highly recommend. Easy and the best use of thanksgiving leftovers!
Yay! So happy to hear you enjoyed! Thanks so much for taking time to comment!
I made these for a fall get together with my church group. They were a hit! I’ll definitely be making again with leftovers after Thanksgiving!
These were delicious! Also, they were easy to make since all the ingredients were at hand. Thank you so much for sharing.
I’m so glad you loved these as much as my family does!
Looks amazing! What a wonderful idea. Can this be assembled in advance and baked later or would it get soggy?
Sorry I’m just now getting back to you. I think it would work fine to make these ahead as long as the cranberry sauce is not directly against the bread.
Can you use chai seeds instead of poppy seeds?
I would think that would work just fine. Enjoy!
Made this for a neighborhood potluck last night and it was a hit. Fast, easy & delicious… my kind of recipe!
Yay! So glad you enjoyed!!
Do they have to be eaten while they’re hot or are they good at room temp?
We ate the leftovers at room temperature this year!
We made these the day after Thanksgiving. Delicious! We had a lot of leftover stuffing and added it to the turkey and cranberries. Will definitely make again.
I bet that was so good with the addition of stuffing! Thanks so much for taking time to comment and happy holidays!
I’ve come across several of your recipes, which I’ve really liked. So when searching for a slider recipe, I found yours. I added extra layers of ham and cheese (swiss, pepper jack & colby) along with an extra dash of poppy seeds and left the cranberry sauce off. For football game day, my husband loves them. He said they are an amazing explosion of flavor. Thanks for all your sharing.
This is a favorite in our home for an easy, delicious dinner served with a side of veggies. My 13 year old kept saying how amazing it was and insisted that I make it on a regular basis 🙂 I make it with havarti cheese since my kids are not big Swiss fans and leave the cranberry sauce out.
This was absolutely delicious! I made it for dinner tonight and my entire family loved it. The only change I made was using provolone. This will definitely become a staple.
I got the 24 pack and made these for a family of 5. Cheap and quick! The butter that goes on top is genius!! Everyone wanted more. Delicious!
Totally delicious, fun and easy. I love dinners when everything cooks with minimal dishes! I made half with turkey and half with ham and they were a complete hit!
Just finished eating this! It was wonderful! I didn’t have the Everything Bagel seasoning so I used some poppy seeds and some onion salt, I used homemade cranberry orange sauce…….delicious! I will for sure make this again. Thank you for your recipe!
Wow this looks delicious… feel like having it right away :D… Will definitely try this recipe 🙂
What a great recipe to try in the season. Cranberry comforts me. Delicious!
These look like the perfect handy food to get the day after Thanksgiving day started. I love them and may need to give this recipe a try!
Great idea on the leftovers! I believe this will be a hit on our house, so yummy!
This is a great way to use up that extra turkey and cranberries after Thanksgiving.
This looks absolutely amazing! We are for sure trying this recipe this Thanksgiving…thank you for such a wonderful idea!
I love these! Not a big turkey fan so i pulsed the turkey, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce in the food processor. I used swiss cheese. Made an excellent lunch for my guests the day after Thanksgiving. Delicious!
So glad you enjoyed and thanks so much for taking time to comment!
Love these little sandwiches! I use the store dinner rolls also and sometimes with seeds.
We loved these cranberry turkey sliders! The ingredients complemented each other nicely and were oh so delicious!
I really enjoyed this recipe and my family did too! I used both ham and turkey lunch meats and to some of the adult sandwiches caramelized onions. Everybody loved them! Thank you!
I LOVE these! We actually enjoy them hot or cold. There are only 2 of us but I make the whole recipe because they are great for snacks! THANK YOU for this wonderful recipe! It is to die for!
These were fantastic! Made them as recipe indicated just added minced onion to the butter sauce this time. Nice touch. However my calorie count comes out to 172 per slider not 83. How did you calculate?:)
So happy you enjoyed! You’re right… I recalculated and got a closer calorie count to yours. It’s updated now.
I am not the biggest fan of cranberries but I guess the mix with Turkey might make me like them. This recipes sounds great and the pictures are amazing! the sliders look so tasty!
Yay for cranberry season! I love baking with cranberries during the holidays. I also love making cranberry sauce not just for Thanksgiving, but to have throughout the season as well. What a fun idea to create sliders with the leftovers! And I love the idea of decorating with fresh cranberries and pecans…it’s perfect for this time of the year! #client