What to do with the leftover turkey? Why make soup of course!

I love Thanksgiving.  It really is one of my favorite holidays, probably because it involves very little planning regarding anything but the meal.  And even the meal is purely subjective.  There are guidelines, but they aren’t set in stone.  It’s really about what you like to eat best and making a big batch to share.  No need for gifts or big decorations, I don’t even do shopping on Black Friday, mostly because I have no patience for crowds and end up bored after the first hour or so.

thanksgiving mashed potatoes with gravy

Massive amounts of mashed potatoes and gravy are essential to our holiday feast, but the turkey is optional.  My mom would rather eat chicken and makes sure we get one from the Farm, so it really tastes like chicken, and makes the BEST gravy ever.

This year she included a turkey breast and we brought some home.  Last night it was just JMumbo and I.  Friday night equals soup in my house, it has since the kids were little and we would snuggle in on cold Friday nights to soup and a movie.  As the kids get bigger and busier, this is one of the moments I miss the most, so getting a chance to hang out with JMumbo and have soup with a movie was a treat.  The kids are set on Mrs. Grass’s chicken noodle soup, the one with the “golden egg”, but I always make my own pot.


This week I started the way I always do, checking out what was in the refrigerator.  When I saw the turkey, in it went.  Then I dig through the cupboard and pull out what looks like it might go together.  It doesn’t mean I will use everything, but it gives me a chance to sort and choose.  Below is what I ended up with, and it is one of the best poultry based soup I have made.  Even if you are trying eat healthier, don’t ignore the butter, it really adds a richness to the soup.  This soup has a lot of fresh ingredients and the few canned ingredients are pretty healthy, the butter isn’t going to ruin your plans for healthy eating.

I don’t post many recipes because I rarely remember to measure anything, I just toss it in and taste until it seems right, but using leftovers for this made it a bit easier to guess the amounts.  Remember to taste it as you add and adjust accordingly.  Sorry there are no photos of my soup, I am not very good at remembering to take them as I cook.


Leftover Turkey Soup

32 oz/4 c of chicken broth (I used Rachel Ray’s low sodium because it’s my favorite)



8 oz/1c of vegetable broth (Again Rachel Ray brand)

1Tbsp unsalted butter

Half an onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, sliced

2 ribs celery, diced

1 Tbsp capers

1 tsp salt (to taste works, this is a guess on my part)

Fresh ground pepper to taste

1 small can of whole button mushrooms, sliced in half

1 – 1 ½ c dried small pasta (I like Ditalini)

2 c chopped leftover turkey (or chicken and you can adjust the amount)

Add the broth to the pot first, then the rest of the ingredients.  You don’t have to add them all at once, and then let it simmer for about 15 minutes to make sure the pasta cooks.


One thought on “What to do with the leftover turkey? Why make soup of course!

  1. Remember I said I don’t post recipes because I never write anything down? Well here are the ingredients I forgot in the post:

    1 Tbsp lemon juice
    1 1/2 tsp corriander
    1 tsp paprika

    What can I say? I toss it in and play until I like it. And it never turns out exactly the same, but it is always edible!

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