Turkey Carcass Soup is a fantastic way to utilize the remains of a roast turkey, transforming it into a delicious and nourishing meal. This soup, rich with the flavors of turkey, vegetables, and herbs, offers a comforting warmth, making it perfect for a cozy family dinner, especially after holiday feasts.


  • 1 leftover turkey carcass (from a roasted turkey)
  • 10 cups water (or enough to cover the carcass)
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chopped potatoes or leftover roasted potatoes
  • 1/2 cup barley or rice (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: fresh parsley and lemon wedges for garnish


  1. Break down the turkey carcass so it fits into a large pot. Add water to cover the carcass.
  2. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Let it simmer for about 1 hour, skimming off any foam that rises to the top.
  3. Remove the carcass from the pot. Once cool enough to handle, remove any meat from the bones and set the meat aside. Discard the bones.
  4. Strain the broth through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean pot to remove any remaining solids.
  5. In the pot with the strained broth, add the chopped carrots, celery, onion, garlic, and potatoes. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  6. If using barley or rice, add it to the pot. Continue to simmer until the vegetables and grains are tender, about 30-40 minutes.
  7. Add the reserved turkey meat back into the pot. Season with bay leaf, dried thyme, salt, and pepper. Cook for an additional 10 minutes.
  8. Remove the bay leaf before serving. Serve the soup hot, garnished with fresh parsley and a squeeze of lemon if desired.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

  • Calories: 150-200 (varies depending on the amount of turkey and whether grains are added)
  • Fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 15g (without grains)
  • Protein: 15g

Prep and Cooking Time

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes (for chopping vegetables and handling the carcass)
  • Cooking Time: 2 hours


  • Serves: 6-8 people

Turkey Carcass Soup is a wonderful, cost-effective way to make the most of your holiday meals. The soup is hearty, flavorful, and full of nutrients, making it an excellent choice for a post-holiday meal that warms the soul and reduces waste. Enjoy this comforting soup with your loved ones and appreciate the full bounty of your feast!

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