Delicious Ways To Use Your Leftover Christmas Ham

As the festive season winds down, our refrigerators often find themselves laden with the remnants of holiday feasts. Unless you're serving dozens of people, more often than not there's an abundance of leftover ham. And while we all love this salty, sweet, and savory icon of the Christmas table, it can be a little overwhelming to think about what to do with the extra meat after the holiday parties are over. Moreover, it's hard to get creative when repurposing holiday leftovers so that you're not eating the same style of meal consistently once the holiday has passed.

Regardless, no one wants to let this culinary treasure go to waste. In the days (and weeks, if you freeze your leftovers) following the holiday season, there are many inventive and mouthwatering ways to transform that leftover ham into a variety of delectable dishes. From the classic comfort of ham and cheese sandwiches to the sophisticated flavors of a croque madame, the possibilities are endless when it comes to infusing new life into your post-Christmas entree.


Dive into the familiar with the comfort of a leftover ham sandwich. Although there is perhaps no more common recipe for leftover Christmas ham than a sandwich, there's no denying how filling, easy, and versatile the dish is. You can always make a delicious and easy cold sandwich with your favorite toppings, like tangy mayo, deli mustard, and crisp vegetables like lettuce, tomato, and onion. The flavor of the roasted honey ham will add a sweetness you don't typically get from deli-sliced ham.

Or, if you'd prefer to get cooking, consider making a delectable ham and Swiss panini. This toasted delight melds the rich flavors of ham with the nuttiness of Swiss cheese. This classic sandwich, layered between slices of crusty bread, delivers a satisfying crunch and gooey goodness with each bite. Enhance the experience by adding a generous smear of Dijon mustard, elevating this sandwich from a mere leftover creation to a gourmet delight suitable for any meal of the day.

No matter how you use ham in a sandwich, you're promised a simple, yet elevated, way to utilize your leftover meat that will please the entire family.


Leftover ham may spark inventiveness when it comes to lunch and dinner, but don't forget about breakfast when you're brainstorming how to utilize your Christmas leftovers. Ham is a great source of protein that also serves as a flavor bomb for otherwise bland breakfast dishes.

A ham and cheese omelet is the epitome of a hearty breakfast, and it can serve as a vessel for additional leftovers like vegetables, herbs, and cheese. This filling and nutritious meal couldn't be easier to make. Simply whisk together eggs and fold in diced ham, shredded cheese, and any leftover veggies you have on hand. The result is a fluffy and flavorful omelet that makes for a delightful start to your day. This breakfast option not only utilizes leftover ham efficiently but also offers a customizable canvas for your post-Christmas creativity.

Omelets also make for a perfect day after Christmas breakfast for your friends and family because omelets can be easily personalized based on what each guest likes. Versatility and clearing out the fridge? We approve.


While we're on the topic of using leftover ham for breakfast, we'd be remiss to not mention quiche. Quiche is a crispy pastry shell filled with eggs, protein, vegetables, herbs, and cheese. Popular varieties include spinach and mushroom or quiche Lorraine, traditionally made with cheese and bacon or ham. Although this dish is impressive, it's actually surprisingly simple to make. 

Create this savory pie by combining smoky bits of ham with creamy cheese, eggs, and heavy cream to make a custard filling. Pour the mixture into an unbaked pie or tart shell, and bake until golden brown. Quiche is a versatile dish suitable for brunch, lunch, or even a light dinner. Serve it with a side salad for an elegant and satisfying meal that showcases the versatility of leftover holiday ham.

If you have other leftovers, such as vegetables, cheese, or herbs, feel free to add those into your custard mixture to re-experience your holiday meal in a completely new way.


Transform your kitchen into a haven of comfort with a hearty casserole. There's nothing more nostalgic or indicative of big family gatherings than a traditional casserole made with leftovers from the holidays. Best of all, casseroles are extremely easy to make, feed large groups of people, and are completely customizable, allowing you to utilize many different kinds of leftovers you may have on hand.

One of our favorite ways to repurpose ham in a casserole is with a classic ham and potato casserole. To make this crowd-pleasing dish, layer thinly sliced potatoes with diced leftover ham, cheese, and a velvety white sauce. Top with more cheese and bake until everything is brown and bubbling with warmth and flavor. This casserole not only utilizes leftover ham but also offers a satisfying and indulgent meal that the whole family will love. The amalgamation of creamy textures and savory bites makes this dish a comforting choice for chilly post-holiday evenings.

Another great casserole variety is the classic cheesy ham and noodle casserole, which is always filling and easy to prepare.

Breakfast skillet

Kickstart your post-holiday mornings with the robust flavors of a ham and potato breakfast skillet. To make this dish, combine leftover diced ham with crispy potatoes, bell peppers, and onions, creating a hearty breakfast that fuels your morning. Top it off with fried or scrambled eggs for an extra layer of richness and added protein.

We love the idea of a breakfast skillet because it not only transforms leftover ham into a delicious morning feast but also provides a wholesome and filling start to your day. Breakfast skillets are also customizable, allowing you to add a variety of seasonings and ingredients to make it your own. If your household is craving something with a different flavor profile from classic holiday meals, you can add cumin, guacamole, and pico de gallo to create a Mexican-inspired take. For a spicy twist, top with your favorite hot sauce to amp up the flavor. With a breakfast skillet, the possibilities are endless.

Croque madame

If you find yourself a few days after the holidays with leftover ham and the desire to never see another cold ham sandwich again, look no further than the croque madame sandwich to elevate the art of leftover ham sandwich-making. This French-inspired delight layers ham and cheese between slices of bread, bathed in a luscious béchamel sauce. What takes it to the next level? A perfectly fried egg crowning the sandwich. The result is a great blend of flavors and textures, making this dish a luxurious and indulgent choice for a leisurely brunch or a special post-holiday treat.

If you don't have the time, energy, or ingredients to make béchamel sauce at home, feel free to replace it with ingredients you likely already have in your refrigerator. Swaps for a béchamel sauce include ricotta cheese, cream cheese, or even Greek yogurt. No matter how you choose to top your croque madame, this French creation will have you excited to eat leftovers.


Soup may not be the first recipe you think of when you consider possible uses for leftover ham. After all, soups generally spark thoughts of other holiday leftovers, such as turkey. However, ham is a deeply flavorful ingredient that, when simmered with other ingredients, can create a savory and craveable broth.

Anyone can turn the simplicity of leftover holiday ham into a comforting bowl of split pea soup. This recipe is traditionally made with ham bone or ham hocks, but the addition of diced ham also helps take it to a new level. Create this hearty dish that is perfect for winter time by simmering together split peas, carrots, onions, and ham. This creates a nourishing and flavorful soup that warms the body as well as the soul. This classic dish not only puts leftover ham to excellent use but also offers a cozy and satisfying option for those post-Christmas evenings when a bowl of soup is just what you need.

Ham tetrazzini

Turkey tetrazzini may be one of the most commonly eaten post-holiday season meals. However, don't think turkey is the only festive main that can take center stage in this cheesy pasta dish. Ham can just as easily be the star in this creamy, heartwarming casserole. This iconic pasta dish combines the rich flavors of diced ham, the unami-heavy flavor of mushrooms, and the creamy decadence of a luscious white sauce. Baked until bubbly, the result is a comforting and elegant meal that transforms leftover ham into a pasta lover's dream. 

Like any other casserole, you can take some creative culinary license and add things like vegetables or herbs. Regardless of how loyal you are to the original recipe of ham tetrazzini, the marriage of creamy textures and savory ham makes this dish a standout option for a cozy dinner, showcasing the versatility of holiday leftovers in an entirely new light.

Collard greens

When it comes to leftovers following the holidays, it can be hard to get enough vegetables in your diet, especially since many vegetables don't reheat well. One way to eat your greens and kick off healthy living for the new year is by preparing a batch of Southern-style collard greens. While they are typically made with smoked turkey or ham hocks and bacon, there's no reason you can't give your collard greens a flavorful twist by incorporating diced leftover holiday ham. 

Roasted Christmas ham adds a smoky and savory dimension to the dish. Simmered to perfection, the collard greens absorb the delicious essence of the ham, broth, onions, and seasonings you add, creating a soulful and satisfying side dish. Whether served alongside a main course or as a standalone dish, this rendition of collard greens highlights just how delicious greens can by when you infuse them with rich and savory flavors.


Is there anything more delicious than finger foods? We don't think so. That's why we approve of transforming your leftover ham into bite-sized delights by making a batch of ham and cheese sliders. These tiny sandwiches are made by layering sweet Hawaiian rolls with slices of leftover ham, your cheese of choice, mustard, and pickles. Add an extra layer of flavor by basting the rolls with a mixture of butter and seasoning. Then bake the sliders until the cheese is melted and the bread is slightly toasty. 

The result is a miniature masterpiece that is full of flavor. These sliders are not only quick and easy to make one or two at a time for a snack but are also perfect when made in large batches for a party appetizer. The combination of savory ham and melted cheese sandwiched between soft rolls can't be beat. These sliders redefine the concept of leftovers, turning them into a crowd-pleasing sensation.


After Christmas, it's not uncommon to have a craving for a completely different kind of meal that changes up the flavors from those we typically enjoy for holiday dinners. By far, one of the best meals for post-holiday get-togethers is pizza. Not only is it filling and versatile, but it can also be easily upgraded with diced holiday ham. Whether you opt for a traditional meat lover's pizza or get inventive with a Hawaiian-inspired pizza, the result is one that's both unique and delectable.

Every good pizza starts with a good pizza dough. From there, the smoky notes of ham blend seamlessly with other toppings like pepperoni, sausage, and cheese, and vegetables like olives, peppers, and onions, creating a medley of flavors that are sure to satisfy. Ham also adds the perfect savory element to a pizza covered with sweet and juicy pineapple. No matter which kind of ham pizza you create, you'll get a filling meal that will quickly use up those leftovers.

Grilled ham and cheese

If in the days following your Christmas or holiday celebration you find yourself completely tired of cooking, you're not alone. After prepping for weeks to cook large meals for friends and family, it can be overwhelming and exhausting to think about making yet another lunch or dinner. However, there's one proven meal that is as delicious as it is easy, and, best of all, you can use leftover holiday ham to create it. 

You can elevate the classic and nostalgic grilled cheese sandwich by incorporating thinly sliced leftover honey ham into the mix. To create a gourmet-style grilled ham and cheese, simply add a layer of Dijon mustard for a hint of sophistication and a drizzle of honey for a touch of sweetness. The result is a harmonious blend of flavors that turns a simple sandwich into a delightful moment. This take on a grilled cheese is perfect for a quick lunch or a cozy dinner — a melty and delicious answer to weary hosts post-holidays.


Whip up something elevated for breakfast by preparing a ham and vegetable frittata. This Italian dish is egg-based, similar to an omelet or crustless quiche. It's made more filling with additional ingredients such as meats, cheeses, or vegetables. Like omelets or quiche, frittatas can be customized with whatever ingredients you have on hand, which makes them the perfect choice for using up leftovers in your fridge.

By adding diced leftover ham, your favorite vegetables, and shredded cheese, you can easily create a versatile and satisfying dish that is suitable for breakfast, brunch, or even a quick dinner. The beauty of a frittata lies in its adaptability, so you can use any vegetables you like. The ham adds a savory depth to the dish, making each bite a reminder of the holidays. Serve it warm or at room temperature, and revel in the simplicity of turning leftover ham into a flavorful and wholesome meal.

Fried rice

Give your leftover ham a completely new life by mixing it in a filling batch of homemade fried rice. Whether you're a pro at making fried rice or you've never tried it before, this dish is easy, quick, and adaptable, making it the perfect one-pan vehicle for leftover proteins. 

The base of any fried rice is leftover rice. The refrigeration helps the starches in the rice become the perfect texture for refrying. Heat up the leftover rice with vegetables that have been sauteed in butter, and add soy sauce, scrambled egg, and your protein of choice. Using leftover holiday ham, you can make a unique Hawaiian-style fried rice with pineapple. This tropical twist on classic fried rice adds a burst of freshness that will be a welcome delight in the days post-Christmas. Of course, if you prefer, a classic style fried rice can be upgraded with diced leftover ham.

No matter which variety of fried rice you choose to create, the soy-infused rice pairs perfectly with the savory notes of ham. This dish not only makes efficient use of leftovers but also offers a satisfying and complete meal that's perfect for busy weeknights.

Scalloped potatoes

Is there a more decadent holiday dish than scalloped potatoes? We don't think so. Scalloped potatoes are typically made with thinly sliced potatoes, a creamy white sauce, and cheese. Whether you made a batch of these cheesy potatoes for your holiday meal or not, this hearty dish is nothing but improved when you add diced leftover ham. If you choose to serve them as a comforting side dish or as a hearty main course, scalloped potatoes with salty ham is filling and flavorful, all the things we want in meals prepared with leftover ingredietns. 

The straightforward preparation of scalloped potatoes, coupled with the ease of incorporating leftover ham, makes this dish not only a crowd-pleaser but also a convenient option for home cooks seeking a flavorful yet manageable post-holiday meal. As an added bonus, the leftovers of this dish reheat well, allowing you to enjoy the delightful combination of creamy potatoes and savory ham for multiple meals without compromising on taste or quality.