Use up that leftover poultry when the holiday ends with this leftover turkey and rice soup! A savory soup that’s overflowing with healthy veggies, aromatic herbs, and perfectly cooked rice. A great way to avoid wasting food!
When the holidays roll around, so does a lot of food. This also means there are usually lots of leftovers. I, personally, dislike when food goes to waste, and like to use up as much as I can before it does. My kryptonite has always been leftover turkey.
Say hello to leftover turkey soup! The flavor of the turkey isn’t glaringly obvious, and it’s perfect for the colder months. It’s really a win all the way around. Trust me. Give it a try and you’ll be hooked.
How Do You Make Soup With Leftover Turkey?
- Toast – Heat up a soup pot with a bit of oil. Add the rice and onions. Toast for 3-4 minutes.
- Simmer – Add all the ingredients except the stock and turkey. Saute for one minute. Add the stock. Bring to a boil and reduce. Let simmer until rice is cooked through.
- Add turkey – Add the turkey to the mixture and let it cook for a few more minutes.
- Serve – Ladle into bowls, serve, and enjoy!
Top Tips For The Perfect Leftover Turkey and Rice Soup
- Use other veggies – If desired, you can always add more of the veggies listed in the recipe or add your own. The vegetables I used in this leftover turkey soup recipe are the traditional ones paired in this type of soup. However, there are other veggies like tomatoes, eggplant, squash, peas, etc. that would also pair well in this soup!
- Use other meats – Don’t have leftover turkey, but want to make this soup? You can use chicken in its place if desired, or eat it without the meat.
- Make it vegan or vegetarian soup – Be sure to use vegetable stock and omit the meat if you would like to make this vegan or vegetarian friendly.
- Use fresh herbs – If you really want to pack in the flavor, use fresh herbs instead of the dried version. They’re much more powerful where flavor is concerned.
- Use other types of rice – If desired, you can switch the rice from white to a wild rice mixture, brown rice, instant rice, etc. Just know that you might have to adjust the cooking time if you change the rice.
How Long Can You Keep a Turkey Carcass Before Making Soup?
As long as you’re keeping it chilled and covered, I would say that three days should be the limit. I tend to make my recipes using the leftover turkey, the next day. This is because poultry has a way of growing bacteria quickly. However, in my experience, you have at least 3 days before things start getting “gamey.”
How Do I Add Flavor to Turkey Soup?
I like to use fresh herbs or seasonings that pair well with poultry. For example, sage, rosemary, thyme, parsley, salt, pepper, etc. All of these are great at adding flavor to a turkey soup recipe. Use dried herbs, but fresh herbs bringer a stronger punch when it comes to flavor. You might try also using stock or broth in your soup as this helps tremendously with the flavor component. Also, you can always use my Instant Pot Chicken Vegetable Soup as a guide for great ingredient choices!
- Fridge – Store in a sealed container for up to 4 days.
- Freezer – Store in an airtight container for up to 2 months.
- Reheating – Reheat using the microwave or stove.
More Delicious Soup Recipes You’ll Enjoy
- Detox Cabbage Soup
- Cuban Chicken Noodle Soup
- Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
Leftover Turkey and Rice Soup
- 2 cups leftover turkey meat
- 1/2 cup long-grain white rice
- 1 onion finely diced
- 4 garlic cloves finely minced
- 3 carrots chopped
- 3 celery stalks chopped
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 6 cups chicken or turkey stock
- 1/2 lemon juiced
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp rosemary fresh
- 1 tsp thyme fresh
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions and rice, cook for 3-4 minutes. Stir in the minced garlic, thyme, rosemary, carrots, celery, and Italian seasoning. Cook for an additional minute.
- Add the chicken or turkey stock and bring to a boil. Stir frequently and cook until the rice is tender. This should take about 20 minutes. Stir in the turkey meat, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
- Serve warm and enjoy!