We all have lots of turkey on Thanksgiving, which means lots of leftovers. If you’re looking for a way to use it that’s not turkey sandwiches, make this Leftover Turkey Soup recipe. It’s all made in one pot, too, making it super easy.
For more ideas, check out all of our soup recipes.
Everyone loves Thanksgiving turkey. What everyone doesn’t love is leftover Thanksgiving turkey. There’s so much of it.
You can make turkey sandwiches for lunch, but even those get tiring. My favorite way to use turkey leftovers, which I could eat every night, is Leftover Turkey Soup. You have a warm, flavorful broth, tender vegetables, and a tender turkey.
Plus, it’s great way to use up a ton of Thanksgiving leftovers. You’re using the cooked turkey, any leftover celery from making stuffing, and carrots (which you probably served as a Thanksgiving side dish).
Of course, you don’t have to make this only in November. You can make a turkey whenever you want, then use the leftovers to make this easy turkey soup recipe.
Leftover Turkey Soup Recipe
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How To Make Leftover Turkey Soup:
Cut the celery stalks into small pieces.
Peel the carrots and chop them into pieces, about the same size as the celery.
Put them in a Dutch oven (or similar large pot) with a drizzle of olive oil and cook them about five minutes.
Chop the onion and add it to the Dutch oven. Cook about five minutes.
Chop the garlic, add it to the pot, and cook about 1 minute.
Add the flour and stir it into the liquid that formed (when the vegetables sweat) to form a roux.
Sprinkle in the thyme and salt.
Add in the chicken broth. Bring it to a boil, then turn the burner down to medium-high heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.
Chop up the leftover turkey meat and add it to the Dutch oven. Cook about six minutes.
Add in the egg noodles and cook about eight minutes, until the pasta noodles are al dente.
Quick note about this: The egg noodles will absorb a lot of the broth, both while it’s cooking and while any leftovers are sitting in the Dutch oven after it is served.
I did want to make it this way so it’s a one pot meal and requires less cleanup. However, you may want to use a second pot to boil the noodles separately. Then, when you’re serving, add some egg noodles in a bowl and then add the broth on top.
That way, the egg noodles won’t absorb much of the broth and you’ll actually have more broth to serve.
You can top the soup with fresh parsley (or any other fresh herbs you have leftover from Thanksgiving) before serving, if you want.
Leftover Turkey Soup: Frequently Asked Questions
Use whatever amount of turkey you have leftover. That’s the best part of the soup. Whatever you have works.
The best balance of ingredients is when you have about two pounds of turkey meat to add to the soup. Personally, I prefer to use the leftover white meat in this soup rather than the dark meat.
Leftover turkey, that has been stored in an airtight container in the fridge, is good for about three to four days. So you’ll want to make this soup within that time frame.
This is a leftover turkey soup recipe. However, if you have leftover chicken instead, you can use that in the soup instead. Just note that the flavors will be a little different since you’re making a chicken soup instead of a turkey soup.
If you don’t want egg noodles in your soup, you can use cooked rice instead. White rice, brown rice, wild rice … it doesn’t matter. What matters is that it’s cooked before you add it to your bowl or to your soup.
Your overall cooking time may change, as well, since rice takes longer to cook than pasta.
If you can only find chicken stock in stores, you can use that. However, store-bought stock isn’t seasoned as much as broth is, so you may need to add additional salt and some black pepper to your soup for the best flavor.
If you’re using homemade stock, you know if it’s well seasoned or not and if you have to add more seasoning.
Let the leftover soup cool to room temperature.
Then, transfer the soup to an airtight container and put it in the fridge. It’ll last about three to four days this way (and actually tastes even better the next day).
You can absolutely freeze leftover turkey soup, then take it out for dinner on cold nights.
You want to store just the broth in a freezer safe container for up to six months. Don’t freeze the soup with the egg noodles because they’ll get really soggy.
Pour leftover turkey soup in a microwave-safe bowl, add about an ounce of chicken broth, and heat it in the microwave.
If you’re reheating frozen soup, it’s best if you let it thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.
- 5 celery stalks
- 1 pound (approximately 5) carrots
- 1 medium onion
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1/2 tablespoon all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
- 48 oz. chicken broth
- Leftover turkey meat
- 8 oz. egg noodles
- Cut the celery stalks into small pieces.
- Peel the carrots and chop them into pieces, about the same size as the celery.
- Put them in a Dutch oven (or similar large pot) with a drizzle of olive oil and cook them for about five minutes.
- Chop the onion and add it to the Dutch oven. Cook about five minutes.
- Chop the garlic, add it to the pot, and cook about 1 minute.
- Add the flour and stir it into the liquid that formed (when the vegetables sweat) to form a rue.
- Sprinkle in the thyme and salt.
- Add in the chicken broth. Bring it to a boil, then turn the burner down to medium-high heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.
- Chop up the leftover turkey meat and add it to the Dutch oven. Cook about six minutes.
- Add in the egg noodles and cook about eight minutes, until the pasta noodles are al dente.
You can cook the noodles separate, which will result in more broth.
Amount Per Serving Calories 107Total Fat 2gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 1gCholesterol 30mgSodium 1322mgCarbohydrates 14gFiber 1gSugar 2gProtein 8g
Have you tried this Leftover Turkey Soup recipe? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.