Make your own broth or grab some from the store because this creamy turkey soup recipe is damn delicious!

How To Make Turkey Soup From The Carcass

I made this creamy turkey soup recipe from scratch, using the carcass from our Thanksgiving turkey. It is not as difficult as it might sound to make your own soup stock. I love making my own broth for several reasons. First, it just tastes really good, I mean really, really good. Second, you know exactly what goes into your soup, there is no bullshit ingredients you can’t even pronounce. Third, it makes the house smell amazing all day! And finally, it uses all the parts of the animal. I often freeze the carcass from a roasted turkey or chicken with the intent of making broth. Then when I have time I take it out, toss it in the pot of water still frozen and add the other ingredients.

How To Make Leftover Turkey Stock Recipe

There are a few key elements to making a good poultry stock. Bones, mirepoix, several key spices, and of course, water make up a broth. The mirepoix is just carrots, onions, and celery, coarsely chopped and added to the simmer. The spices are thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns, parsley, whole cloves, and garlic. The spices can be put into a sachet so that they can be easily removed. I usually just strain my broth through a double cheesecloth to remove all the ingredients. The goal is to try to achieve the clearest broth possible. The steps pretty basic, all of these ingredients are added to a pot of water and simmer for about 4 hours. When the simmer is done, the pot is immersed in a sink of cold water to cool. Then any fat is skimmed and the ingredients either removed or strained.

Delicious creamy turkey soup.

Creamy turkey soup. 

How To Make Stock

I learned how to make good stock from the Professional Cooking book. This is a textbook that is used by some highly acclaimed chef schools around the world. I found it used but it is also available on Amazon. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to improve their cooking skills. Professional Cooking is one of my all-time favorite cooking books. This turkey soup recipe is the result of my learning how to make great stock from this book.

Gisslen, Wayne. Professional Cooking, Wiley Higher Ed. Kindle Edition.

Can You Freeze Turkey Stock

Freezing turkey stock is super easy. Let the stock cool fully then portion it out into freezer bags. Set the bag or bags in a bowl or on a pan and place it in the freezer. Once the stock is frozen you can remove the bowl or pan. I put a bowl or pan under just in case there is a hole in the freezer bag. I would rather remove the bowl and clean it out than have to defrost my entire freezer in order to clean up a damn mess. The same applies when you thaw it out. Place it in a bowl to thaw or while you microwave it, just in case the freezer caused some integrity issues with the freezer bag.

How To Thicken Turkey Soup

To thicken any soup is pretty easy, just make a roux and add it to the soup. A roux is basically equal parts flour and butter that is cooked together at a high temperature for a few minutes before it is added to the soup. If the roux doesn’t make the stock thick enough for you, you can also add more flour or I find that Wondra works well too. Cornstarch will also thicken but start small and see if you will need more. You don’t want the soup to turn into a crappy paste or gravy. That would be as bad as Trump’s wig in a hurricane. Ew!

Delicious and warm, creamy turkey soup.

Delicious and warm, creamy turkey soup. 

Turkey Soup With Rice

To make a super hardy turkey soup recipe, try adding some cooked rice to the soup in the last few minutes of cooking. Since the rice is already cooked it just needs to be heated with the soup unless of course, you add it immediately after cooking the rice. I find this s a great way to use leftover rice.

Turkey Soup With Noodles

Noodles also make this turkey soup recipe very robust and hardy. I have tried cooking rice and noodles in the soup, but this doesn’t work in two ways. One, the noodles get overcooked and soggy when left in the soup. Two, see the first point. Just make up the noodles separately and add them when you serve. I usually place the cooked noodles in a bowl and ladle the soup over them. Another great thing about this method is that if there are leftovers, you can store the noodles in a separate container and they won’t get super soggy. Because soggy noodles are as bad as the president’s new tax plan, and who wants that?

Turkey Soup With Dumplings

I love soup with dumplings. My dumplings are usually from a box of Bisquick for two reasons. First, I never thought to make them from scratch, and two, Bisquick makes a pretty good dumpling. Why fix what ain’t broke? Just make up the recipe that is in the box of Bisquick or go check out these nice variations on Betty Crockers website.

Hardy and delicious creamy turkey soup.

Hardy and delicious creamy turkey soup.

Turkey Soup Recipe With Leftovers

Another great way to enjoy the turkey soup recipe is to pour it over leftover dressing. Just reheat the dressing in a bowl and pour the soup over. It’s like freaking dumplings only better because it is dressing. I also used some leftover gravy to flavor and thicken this soup. We made way too much gravy for our Thanksgiving dinner. After thinking about it, roux makes gravy and roux will also thicken the soup. So why not use gravy to thicken and flavor the soup? It was effing delicious!

How To Make Turkey Soup Recipe

Now that you have a good stock, the soup is pretty easy. When I made this recipe last, I didn’t quite have enough turkey stock. I could have added water, but I did not want to dilute the stock. Therefore, I added some chicken broth I had purchased. Chicken broth can be used if you decide not to make your own stock. It works really well and adds a ton of flavor to the soup. Once the broth got up to temperature I thickened it and added the vegetables to cook. When the vegetables were fully cooked I added the cut up deboned turkey to cook for a few minutes. That is all there is to it. Pretty simple. Almost as simple as opening that can from the supermarket, but this is so much better.

Creamy Turkey Soup Recipe

A deliciously creamy turkey soup recipe. Got turkey leftovers from the holiday, then try this soup. So warm and creamy you will wonder where it has been all your life!

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword Creamy Turkey Soup Recipe
Prep Time 6 hours 40 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 7 hours 25 minutes
Servings 6 people
Calories 385 kcal
Author Barbara Tidwell


  • 1 whole turkey carcass, with giblets, if desired
  • 3 large carrots
  • 4 stalks celery stalks
  • 1 whole white or yellow onion
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley, or dried if no other choice
  • 1 tbsp whole peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp whole fresh cloves
  • 3 whole cloves garlic (optional)
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 3 large bay leaves
  • 6 qt water
  • 6 c leftover turkey meat (amount can vary)
  • 2 large carrots, cubed small
  • 3 large celery stalks, cubed small
  • 1/2 large onion, cubed small
  • 1 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced thick
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp parsley
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • 3 c leftover gravy
  • 1 tbsp fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp salt to taste


  1. To make the broth, combine the turkey carcass, 3 carrots, 4 celery stalks, 1 whole onion, parsley, peppercorns, cloves, thyme, bay leaves and water.

  2. Cover leaving a small opening in the lid for about 4 hours.

  3. Strain the broth through a strainer lined with cheesecloth. Place broth back on the stove.

  4. Bring broth to a slow simmer. Add leftover gravy to taste. At this time add any thickener to make the soup as thick as you like. 

  5. Once the soup is thickened, add the rest of the ingredients except the turkey. At this time you can add more spices to taste if needed. I keep the spices simple, kosher salt, black pepper, minced garlic, parsley, and basil.

  6. Simmer for about thirty minutes or until the vegetables are mostly cooked

  7. Add the meat and simmer another 10 minutes. 

  8. If you would like to add noodles or dumpling do so in about the last ten minutes.

  9. Let cool slightly before serving.