My turkey noodle soup is the ultimate comfort food, and the perfect way to repurpose roast turkey leftovers. Our Thanksgiving table is full of delicious recipes (roasted garlic mashed potatoes, roasted squash and sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and more), but making soup from leftovers is one of my favorite ways to enjoy the flavors of the holiday. I never throw out any turkey meat or bones because it makes for the most incredible and nutritious soup.
This turkey noodle soup is what I always look forward to come autumn, and I know it’s become a staple in many of your homes as well since I have been sharing it on my Instagram stories over the years. This is the perfect recipe to make the day after American or Canadian Thanksgiving. Please give my recipe a try and let me know how you liked it in the comments.
Variations and Substitutions:
This soup is incredibly adaptable. Here are a few ways to make it your own, depending on your taste preferences or the ingredients you have in your kitchen:
- You can also make this soup with a leftover roast chicken, if you have saved the bones and some chicken meat.
- If you’re making this after Thanksgiving and you have a bunch of leftover roasted veggies, you can chop them up small and add to the soup, just to warm through, during the last few minutes of cooking. Bite-size, roasted squash makes a lovely addition.
- For gluten-free folks, you can swap the pasta with cooked white or wild rice.
Best served with:
Serve this soup up with any Thanksgiving feast leftovers you may have. Here are some recipes I love serving at my holiday table:
- Holiday Butter Board
- Holiday Charcuterie Board
- Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes
- Roasted Squash and Sweet Potatoes
- Brussels sprouts
- Baked Apples
Yes, you can use a homemade or store-bought rotisserie chicken in place of turkey.
Yes, this is still a delicious veggie and pasta soup on its own, without the poultry bones or meat.
Turkey noodle soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 yellow onion finely diced
- 1 carrot finely diced
- 1 celery rib finely diced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- salt and pepper to taste
- leftover cooked turkey bones
- 4 cups water
- 4 cups unsalted vegetable broth
- 1 cup pasta broken into bite-size pieces, (I used broken up capellini)
- 1 cup leftover turkey meat shredded or chopped (as much as you like)
- fresh parsley for garnish
- lemon juice for garnish (optional)
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and let cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir, about 30 seconds.
- Add the leftover cooked turkey bones, water, and broth. Let everything come to a boil, add a generous pinch of salt, season with pepper, reduce the heat to medium and let simmer for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, remove and discard the turkey bones. Add any pasta of choice. Add the shredded or chopped leftover turkey meat and always taste and adjust for salt. Don’t forget to be careful and discard any small bones, if any, as they can fall in the broth.
- Boil the soup for 5 to 10 minutes or until the pasta is cooked, garnish with parsley and enjoy with freshly squeezed lemon juice, if using.
- You are more than welcome to use any gluten-free pasta of choice or rice.
- You can also break angel hair pasta or capellini into little pieces like I did. Orzo will also work beautifully in this soup.
- Feel free to add all the vegetables whole with the turkey bones. After 30 minutes you can discard the bones and blend the whole vegetables with some of the broth and pour it blended back into the soup if you have picky eaters. I will link the hidden broth method here which you have seen in all my other recipes already. I am leaving this as a suggestion for anyone that doesn’t like to see vegetables in their soup.
- If you don’t have any leftover turkey, you can simply make this the same way and leave out the turkey. You will have a delicious broth regardless that you can sip on.
- You can absolutely cook the pasta separately as it will thicken and expand in the soup the following day.
- You can also add the turkey bones in a cheese cloth so that it’s easy to remove and it will also catch any small bones that may fall.
- Feel free to make this recipe with chicken as it’s just as delicious.