Corporate wellness insights

Turkey-ed Out? Disguise Leftovers with a Mexican Kick

Posted by Colleen Sideck, MPH, RDN on 12.10.2018

Turkey dinners can be a staple during the holiday season, but how many times can you eat plates of leftovers before you get tired of them? The good news is that by repurposing your leftovers into different meals, you can avoid letting food go to waste while also giving your taste buds the variety that they’re craving this time of year. Put together two common healthy holiday foods — with a Mexican spin — by making these Turkey and Sweet Potato Enchiladas.

This one-pan meal provides combination of two sleep-promoting foods: turkey, which contains tryptophan to help us relax and get sleepy, and corn tortillas, which contain complex carbohydrates to help us to feel the effects of tryptophan quicker. During the busy holiday season when sound sleep may feel like a luxury, this meal could be just the dinner that you’re looking for! Consider pairing the enchiladas with a side salad for an extra veggie boost.

Turkey and Sweet Potato Enchiladas


Enchilada Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 2 large cloves)
  • 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1, 12-ounce can tomato paste
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Enchilada Filling

  • 2 cups cooked turkey, shredded (can substitute chicken)
  • 1 cup mashed sweet potatoes (no sweetener added)
  • 2/3 cup shredded Mexican cheese
  • 14, 6-inch corn tortillas


  1. Make the enchilada sauce by adding garlic and oil to a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir frequently until garlic turns golden brown, about 3 minutes. Whisk in chili powder, tomato paste and vegetable broth until smooth. Add in salt. Bring sauce to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer to thicken. Set aside.
  2. Make enchilada filling by combining turkey, sweet potato, cheese, and ½ cup enchilada sauce.
  3. Place ½ of the enchilada sauce in the bottom of a large casserole baking dish. Assemble enchiladas by placing about ¼ cup of the filling onto the center of a tortilla and rolling up. Place assembled tortilla in baking dish, and repeat with remaining tortillas. Pour remaining filling over enchiladas. Cover with foil, and bake for 35-40 minutes. If desired, sprinkle with fresh cilantro and cheese before serving.

Recipe adapted from Imma Eat That

Healthy recipes are just one example of how our health coaches provide employees with practical advice that can make a difference in their overall wellbeing. Learn more about WCS health coaching here!

Colleen is a member of the WCS Health Coaching team. As a Registered Dietitian, she is passionate about our team's ability to guide employees towards sustainable, healthy habits that help them lead their fullest life—inside and outside the workplace.