It's been a busy few days of prepping, cleaning, eating and cleaning again, and now you're done. Except you're not — there's still a refrigerator packed with leftovers.

The first day after Thanksgiving is easy, as you'll be checking the obligatory post-holiday turkey sandwich off your list. The following days, though, can get tricky.

A typical Thanksgiving meal is a heavy-duty affair, packed with stuffing, casseroles, potatoes, sweet potatoes, rolls, etc. And while these are all cherished dishes that everyone will be enjoying over the next couple of days, there will come a time when you've had enough of those traditional flavors and are looking for something different … but you still have leftover turkey.

Welcome to the rice bowl.

Rice bowls can take on a number of flavor profiles. Latin American, Asian and Mediterranean cuisines all lend themselves well to the concept of topping a bowl of steaming rice with other, bold ingredients.

This week, I'm going with Asian flavors and topping rice with a combination of shredded turkey, kimchi, green onions and an egg. I like a fried egg, but poached or soft-boiled will do, too.

A simple sauce of mayonnaise and gochujang, along with a splash of unseasoned rice vinegar and a drop or two of honey, brings the bowl together.

Kimchi and gochujang can easily be found in most grocery stores. At my local supermarket, the kimchi — spicy, fermented cabbage — is found refrigerated in the produce section, and the gochujang — a Korean hot pepper paste — is located in the global foods section.

Feel free to experiment with other toppers, like thinly sliced sugar snap peas, chopped bell peppers, shredded carrots or thawed frozen edamame. Or set out bowlfuls of options and let each diner make their own.

It's a quick, easy meal that's sure to please, and a nice break from all the holiday fare. So, take a moment to enjoy it, as more holidays are right around the corner.

Turkey Rice Bowl With Kimchi and Creamy Gochujang Sauce

Serves 4.

Leftover Thanksgiving Day turkey gets a flavor-packed makeover in these ultra-easy, Korean-inspired rice bowls.

For the sauce:

• 1/3 c. mayonnaise

• 2 tbsp. gochujang (Korean hot pepper paste)

• 2 tbsp. unseasoned rice vinegar

• 1 tsp. honey

• 1/2 tsp. toasted sesame oil

For the bowls:

• 3 c. cooked short grain white or brown rice

• 2 c. shredded roasted turkey

• 3/4 c. drained Napa cabbage kimchi, cut into 1-in. pieces

• 4 soft-cooked eggs (poached or fried)

• 1/3 c. thinly sliced green onions

• 1 tbsp. toasted sesame seeds


To prepare the sauce: In a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, gochujang, vinegar, honey and sesame oil. Set aside.

To assemble bowls: Divide the rice, turkey, kimchi and eggs among 4 serving bowls. Top with gochujang sauce, green onions and sesame seeds. Serve.

Meredith Deeds is a cookbook author and food writer from Edina. Reach her at Follow her on Instagram ­at @meredithdeeds.