One of my favorite snacks to make for game day or any other casual event that involves guests at my house is Turkey Cranberry Sliders. These sliders taste incredible. They are able to be enjoyed year round for any occasion, but the ingredients just happen to be things you’ll likely have available after a big holiday meal.
Whatever the case, Turkey Cranberry Sliders are always delicious. With all the right components from your favorite meal sandwiched between a golden crusted dinner roll there is no way you aren’t going to love this juicy tender treat.
Cranberry turkey sliders are great for all your leftover holiday turkey. Although we make this year round so use deli meat most of the time, leftover turkey is always a great choice.
Sweet Dinner Roll/Slider Bun
Great turkey cranberry sliders begin with the right bread. These sliders are so good, I can point to virtually any component of the sandwich and say: “Yes, that’s the best”. I could do that and I would be right, because literally everything that goes into this small sandwich contributes to the most amazing flavor with tremendously satisfying results. But these are sandwiches. The top and the bottom of which are the key to holding the whole thing together. So, of course the bread is vitally important.
Because these are sliders, it makes sense to choose a dinner roll. We want these sliders to be as good as they can be. The more flavor the better. That’s why I like Hawaiian dinner rolls, especially for turkey cranberry sliders. The sweetness of the rolls are such a compliment to the other fillings of the sandwich. The evidence is right there in a traditional holiday meal, where most or all of these ingredients are frequently combined anyway. Why leave such a good thing untouched ten months out of the year if you don’t have too? You can enjoy these sliders for virtually any occasion year round.
Turkey Cranberry Sliders Are a Winning Play
Aside from holidays, where these sliders are perfect for dealing with any leftovers, Turkey cranberry sliders make any gathering exceptional. I find they are a welcome game day snack for all sporting events and they make a pleasant departure from the typical fried foods and dips. Because of their size they’re easily distributed at larger gatherings, but you can also load several on your own plate. Part of the fun of sliders is exercising your options on portion size.
As a meal or a snack, turkey cranberry sliders are simple to make for large gatherings and popular with guests. They’re easy to put together even if you don’t already have leftovers in the fridge. The turkey doesn’t have to be from a carved turkey. Deli meat is just fine. In fact, it’s nice to be able to have a professional slice it to your desired thickness. Whatever turkey you choose pairing it with tart whole berry cranberry sauce and creamy provolone cheese is a winning combination.
One Big Sandwich
Part of why the turkey cranberry sliders work so great as a party food is that they are not only easy to eat, they are so simple to make in bulk. You can make 12 at a time, which is crazy! That’s enough for a dozen guests to have one, or 2 for 6. The trick is keeping the whole sheet of Hawaiian dinner rolls attached. Just slice it across the middle with a long knife. Then layer turkey, provolone, and cranberry sauce before topping it off with the top sheet of Hawaiian rolls. After they cook, cut them up and dish them out.
Although two sliders is the recommended serving size, a single batch could be enough for two or three people to go hog wild. However you make these disappear, they will disappear. Don’t underestimate how much people love these. Even though it reminds them of thanksgiving, people gleefully wolf down these turkey cranberry sliders in the middle of summer, too. The sliders are almost as good served cold, but they won’t have that delicious golden crust on top from the butter mixture.
Turkey cranberry sliders are the perfect party food! Easy to make ahead and always the first to go. It helps that we always have these simple ingredients as staples in our house. And if not a run to the grocery store and your good to go.
- Hawaiian style dinner rolls
- turkey lunchmeat or leftover fully cooked turkey
- provolone cheese (swiss also works well)
- whole berry cranberry sauce
- brown sugar
- Worcestershire sauce
- Dijon mustard
- poppy seeds
**See the recipe card at the end of the post for quantities and cooking times.
This recipe is so easy to make. It’s really just a matter of putting it together mostly. The only part of the recipe you will have to make is the buttery topping.
Step 1: Getting the Rolls Ready
Remove the rolls from the package and use a long, sharp knife to cut the whole loaf in half horizontally to create a bottom half and a top half. Place the bottom half into a 9×13-inch glass baking dish.
Step 2: Put the Ingredients on the Rolls
Evenly distribute the turkey over the bottom half of the bread, then top with the cheese and then the cranberry sauce. Place the top half of the loaf on top.
Step 3: Making the Buttery Topping
In a small saucepan, heat the butter, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and poppy seeds over medium heat until the butter is melted and the sugar dissolved; stir often. Pour the sauce all over the top of the sandwiches, using a spoon or pastry brush to evenly distribute the sauce.
Step 4: Baking the Sliders
Cover the dish with foil, then bake the sliders at 375F for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-6 minutes until the sliders are golden brown and the cheese is melted. Cool slightly before serving.
Butter the Top
The butter mixture you brush onto the top of the Hawaiian dinner rolls is the secret weapon of this recipe for turkey cranberry sliders. This buttery coat aids in the toasting process and works like an egg wash, leaving a tasty enamel on the bun that gives it a better presentation over all and adds that wow factor when you bite into it. It’s that one thing that takes the recipe from pretty good to absolutely stunning. The best thing about it is people won’t be able to place what is so special about them, but they will rave about how good your turkey cranberry sliders are.
This proprietary blend (that’s what you’ll call it when they ask) is made up of delicious brown sugar, tangy dijon mustard, savory Worcestershire (woo-ster-shire) sauce, butter, and of course, poppy seeds. brush this yummy coating over the top of your sliders before cooking to really make them pop.
How to Cover Turkey Cranberry Sliders with Foil
Another trick to help you make the best turkey cranberry sliders is to use aluminum foil to cover the sliders as they cook. Don’t have the foil touch the sliders, but make a dome to help trap heat and make them toast faster. This is a good tip to keep in mind, because if you do have a holiday turkey you’re roasting, this knowledge is pivotal.
Store bought turkey’s are typically young and relatively lean, which is why they have a reputation for drying out. They take longer to cook than fatter turkeys because fat is a better conductor of heat than lean meat. However, the meat also tends to dry out from overcooking.
What most people do in an effort to trap moisture in is cover the turkey in foil. Unfortunately, that only traps heat in. Since the turkey continues to cook up to an hour after you remove it from the oven, trapping heat is one of the worst things you can do. It actually makes the turkey more dry. Next time, try just letting the turkey rest uncovered and see how moist it is then.
We are sure you will love this recipe and so will all your quests. Weather its game day or as an appetizer, this is guaranteed to be a hit!
MORE RECIPES YOU WILL LOVE:
Turkey Cranberry Sliders
- 1 package (12 rolls) Hawaiian style dinner rolls
- 8 ounces turkey lunchmeat or leftover fully cooked turkey
- 8 ounces provolone cheese (swiss also works well)
- 1 cup whole berry cranberry sauce (or 1 can of jellied cranberry sauce, sliced into 12 rounds)
- ¼ cup butter
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon poppy seeds
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Remove the rolls from the package and use a long, sharp knife to cut the whole loaf in half horizontally to create a bottom half and a top half. Place the bottom half into a 9×13-inch glass baking dish
- Evenly distribute the turkey over the bottom half of the bread, then top with the cheese and then the cranberry sauce. Place the top half of the loaf on top.
- In a small saucepan, heat the butter, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and poppy seeds over medium heat until the butter is melted and the sugar dissolved; stir often
- Pour the sauce all over the top of the sandwiches, using a spoon or pastry brush to evenly distribute the sauce
- Cover the dish with foil, then bake the sliders at 375Ffor 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-6 minutes untilthe sliders are golden brown and the cheese is melted.
- Cool slightly before serving.
- I use deli-style turkey lunchmeat, but this can also be done with leftover turkey.
- I used canned whole berry cranberry sauce, but it could be made with slices of jellied cranberry sauce or even a homemade sauce.