Easy, simple but delicious Turkey Noodle Soup is made with leftover turkey, basic veggies and pasta. It is ready in about 30 minutes and is a year round family favorite!
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Any holiday, I turn leftover turkey into a turkey noodle soup. Hearty, comforting, flavorful and healthy, it’s a great way to transform your Thanksgiving leftovers into a new meal.
But why wait year round? I would be lying if I said I do not buy fresh turkey breast and enjoy this turkey soup all year long.
And if you don’t have turkey, just use leftover rotisserie chicken!
So darn easy! Carrots, celery, pasta, turkey and spices simmer in broth until a version of my grandma’s healthy chicken noodle soup is born. It is ready in 35 minutes.
And if I have time, I make homemade Instant Pot bone broth first for all that immune boosting goodness.
Leftover turkey, vegetables in the drawers, broth, it can all be put to good use in this homemade turkey soup recipe.
- Leftover cooked turkey: Thighs, breast, carcass and bones or a combination.
- Broth: You can use either homemade chicken broth, Instant Pot chicken broth or store bought chicken broth or turkey broth.
- Veggies: Onion, garlic, carrots and celery. Use what you have.
- Pasta: Any short pasta, egg noodles, or gluten free pasta works.
- Seasonings: Bay leaf, salt, freshly ground black pepper and dried thyme.
- Fresh herbs: Parsley, dill, or green onion adds another layer of flavor at the end. Don’t skip!
How to Make Turkey Noodle Soup
Use this basic recipe as a guideline and make it your own with any of your healthy Thanksgiving recipes leftovers.
Saute veggies first: Add diced onion, carrots, celery and minced garlic with olive oil into a pot first. Saute for 5 minutes, stirring a few times.
Add meat and broth: Add shredded cooked turkey, broth, dried thyme, salt, pepper and bay leaves.
Allow it to simmer for 15 minutes until veggies are tender.
Add noodles and cook for another 5 minutes.
Stir and serve: Discard bay leaves as well.
Tips and Variations
- Type of turkey: Do not add skin as it makes soup very fatty.
- Gravy: Add leftover healthy turkey gravy for even more flavor.
- Soggy pasta: Pasta soaks up liquid like crazy. If you make a lot of soup and don’t like soggy noodles next day (who does?!), add only enough pasta to eat today.
- Frozen veggies: Add frozen veggies like peas, corn and edamame at the end.
Store and reheat: Store in an airtight container without noodles for a few days. Tomorrow bring soup to a boil, add more pasta and simmer until pasta is cooked.
Reheat: Add soup to saucepan and simmer on low until heated. I even do it sometimes with frozen soup.
Freeze: If you plan on freezing turkey soup, do not freeze soup with cooked pasta. In Ukraine, grandma often cooked rice or pasta separately and then added to reheated soup.
Yes. Add all ingredients except noodles to the slow cooker and simmer on high for 3 hours or low for 6 hours. Stir in noodles and cook 15 minutes longer on high until noodles are tender. Gluten free noodles may need less time.
Yes, first saute veggies in oil. Then add meat, broth, thyme, salt, pepper and bay leaves. Seal Instant Pot and set to high pressure for 5 minutes.
Let pressure release naturally for 10 minutes and then release pressure all the way. Add noodles, stir, close the lid and let soup sit for 10 minutes. Pasta will cook in hot broth.
Yes! Year round use your leftover Instant Pot whole chicken leftovers.
Serve soup with rye bread or toasted whole grain bread. A simple salad like this spinach salad makes a wonderful light meal.
More Healthy Soup Recipes
- Veggie pasta fagioli
- Turkey meatball soup
- Chicken noodle vegetable soup
- Instant Pot chicken noodle soup
- Slow cooker chicken soup
You may also love this collection of best soup recipes!
Easy Turkey Noodle Soup
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 3 large garlic cloves minced
- 2 large carrots chopped
- 2 large celery stalks chopped
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 10 cups turkey broth low sodium
- 3 cups leftover turkey meat shredded
- 1 tsp salt
- Ground black pepper to taste
- 2 bay leaves
- 8 oz 4 cups egg noodles
- 3 tbsp fresh parsley finely chopped
- Preheat large pot on medium heat and swirl oil to coat. Add onion, garlic, carrots, celery and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add turkey broth, cooked turkey meat, salt, pepper, bay leaves and stir. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
- Add pasta, stir and cook covered for another 5 minutes.
- Add parsley and serve hot.
- Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days. If you make a lot of soup and don’t like soggy noodles next day, add enough pasta to eat today. Tomorrow bring soup to a boil, add more pasta and simmer until pasta is cooked.
- Freeze: Freeze in airtight container for up to 3 months, without pasta though.
- Reheat: Simmer soup on low in a saucepan. You can even do this with frozen soup.
- Broth: Feel free to use chicken broth.