Transform Your Roast Chicken Leftovers With This Easy Recipe

Turn last night's leftovers into something totally new with this leftover roast chicken recipe. Plus, four ways to use up your giblets.

The best way to rescue last night’s leftovers is to send them to some far-off land where nobody will recognize them, in witness protection if you will. Here leftover roast chicken (but you could also use pork, duck or turkey) and cool crispy cucumber are smothered in a spicy Szechuan sauce that you can serve on top of simple greens or a sprout salad, nestle in lettuce cups, or roll up in corn tortillas or a batch of Crispy Rice Crepes.

(Related: This Slow Cooker Apple Butter Is the Comfort Food You Need Right Now)

Bong Bong Chicken

Uses up cooked protein, cucumber

serves 4, makes 1/2 cup of dressing

Total time: 15 minutes

Keeps for up to 3 days in the fridge

Can substitute chicken with turkey, duck, or pork


Bong Bong Dressing

  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp finely chopped or puréed fresh ginger
  • 1 Tbsp red wine or rice vinegar 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp chili oil or paste
  • 6 Tbsp soy or tamari sauce
  • 2 tsp ground or crushed Szechuan peppercorns
  • 2 tsp sugar

Bong Bong Chicken

  • 4 cups (about 1 lb) pulled cooked or roasted chicken (see substitutions)
  • 2–3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 cucumber, cut lengthwise into 2-inch sticks

Optional Garnishes

  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro, mint, or basil
  • ¼ cup toasted sesame seeds Handful of peanuts, cashews, or any other nuts or seeds
  • Handful of sprouts or microgreens e.g., pea shoots, alfalfa, bean, or broccoli sprouts

(Related: Here’s Why You Should Never Wash Chicken Before Cooking It)


  1. For the Dressing: In a small bowl, whisk all of the dressing ingredients Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. If it’s not sweet enough, add more sugar. If it’s not spicy enough, add more chili oil.
  2. For the Chicken: Plate the salad by stacking pulled roast chicken and green onions on top of the cucumber Drizzle with the dressing and garnish to your liking.

Four ways to use up your giblets

Giblets are free nutrient-dense proteins filled with vitamins and minerals that you can find inside whole chickens (however, this is becoming less common), but you can also ask your butcher if they have some. If you do have them, don’t let them go to waste!

  1. Add them to your gravy: Simmer giblets in just enough water or stock to cover with 1 chopped carrot, 2 chopped celery stalks, 1 chopped onion, 1 Tbsp peppercorns, and 4 sprigs of fresh thyme for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 hour. Strain this liquid gold and add it to your pan juices and proceed with your time-honored family gravy recipe.
  2. Toss them into your next stock or broth.
  3. If you like the taste of fried liver and organ meats, slice, season, fry up, and enjoy.
  4. Hide them in your next stew or batch of burgers or Purée them in a blender or food processor and stir them into the mixture for added nutrients.

CoverImage: Penguin Random House Canada

Excerpted from Cook More, Waste Less by Christine Tizzard Copyright © 2021 Christine Tizzard. Photography © Reena Newman. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

Next, Here’s How Long Leftovers Really Last

Originally Published in Best Health Canada