Cheesy Thanksgiving Tamales

Southern Living
Cheesy Thanksgiving TamalesRecipe
Photo: Alison Miksch; Styling: Caroline M. Cunningham


You'll love our genius way to use leftover stuffing, turkey, or sweet potato casserole by turning it into the starchy outer layer of tamales.

Makes 2 dozen


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24 dried corn husks
2 cups leftover cooked dressing
1 (4-oz.) block pepper Jack cheese, cut into 12 sticks
Kitchen string


Hands-on: 45 Minutes
Total: 2 Hours, 20 Minutes

1. Soak corn husks in warm water to cover 1 hour or until softened. Drain and pat dry.

2. Press 2 Tbsp. dressing into a 3- x 5-inch rectangle along 1 long side of 1 husk, leaving borders along other 3 sides of husks. Place 1 cheese stick in center of dressing. Roll up dressing, starting with long side and using husk as a guide. Press dressing edges together to form a seal, enclosing filling. Fold long side of husk over tamale to enclose.

3. Fold ends toward center to seal. Repeat procedure using remaining husks, dressing, and cheese.

4. Place 6 tamales side by side on work surface, with seam sides inward; tie tamales together with kitchen string, securing bundles at both ends. Repeat procedure to make a total of 4 bundles.

5. Stand tamale bundles on end in a steamer basket; place basket over boiling water in a large Dutch oven. Cover and steam 35 minutes or until dressing is set, adding more boiling water as needed. Serve hot with Spicy Cranberry Salsa.

Turkey Tamales: Omit cheese. Prepare recipe as directed, spooning 1 Tbsp. chopped cooked turkey down center of dressing before rolling in Step 2.

Sweet Potato Tamales: Omit pepper Jack cheese. Prepare recipe as directed, spooning 1 Tbsp. leftover sweet potato casserole down center of dressing before rolling in Step 2.

Created date

September 2014