This wonderful, flavorful turkey soup uses spices such as bay leaves, basil, and marjoram to create enticing aromas to fill your home and lure your family to the table. This is a great use of the bones you have leftover from your Thanksgiving turkey.
This turkey soup recipe does require two days to prepare, so allow yourself plenty of time. You can add noodles, rice, or cubed potatoes to chunk-up the soup. Serve with fresh crusty bread and enjoy this soup for days.
Carcass, wings & bones of 1 leftover turkey
2 stalks celery with leaves
2 carrots, cut in chunks
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon marjoram
1. Remove all meat from the bones and carcass and refrigerate.
2. Break bones and carcass up into pieces small enough to fit into a 4 or 5 quart crock pot.
3. Add remaining ingredients and 3 quarts of water.
4. Cover and simmer on the low setting for 24 hours.
5. Strain broth, and refrigerate overnight in a clean bowl.
6. Discard vegetables and bones.
Directions – the next day:
1. Remove the fat that has congealed on the surface of the broth. Place broth in a large kettle and bring slowly to a boil.
2. Add: 1 1/2 cups chopped celery, 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots, and 1/2 cup chopped parsley
3. Simmer for 15 minutes. Add 3/4 cup barley and simmer for another 15 minutes or so. Salt and pepper to taste.
4. Add 1 cup noodles or other small soup pasta. Simmer until the pasta, barley, and vegetables are tender.
5. Add 1 to 2 cups leftover turkey and return to boiling. Makes approximately 3 to 4 quarts.
How to Store Leftover Turkey Soup
Your family may not be able to eat all of this turkey soup at once! If you have any leftovers, store it in your fridge or freezer until you're ready to eat it! Since we want to make it easy for you, we have instructions for storing your turkey soup in both the fridge and freezer. Plus, we'll tell you how to heat it up once you're ready to eat it.
When storing your soup in the fridge, make sure you keep it in a tightly sealed container or Ziploc bag. If you choose the latter, make sure the bag is truly sealed tight. If there are any gaps, the soup won't last and may spill in your fridge. When stored in the fridge, turkey soup will last for around three or four days. Make sure you can consume your turkey soup within this timeframe before you choose to store it in the fridge.
If you want your soup to last longer, store it in the freezer. When frozen, turkey soup will last for around three months. Ideally, you should aim to consume it sooner than that, but it will store for that long if you need it to. Keep your freezer set to zero degrees Fahrenheit to ensure it lasts as long as possible. When you're ready to defrost, put it in the fridge or microwave. Don't leave it sitting out on the counter.
To reheat your soup, bring it to a boil for three minutes on the stovetop or in the microwave. By boiling it for this long, you'll kill any bacteria that might be in the soup. Don't reheat more than you know you can finish; turkey soup shouldn't be reheated multiple times.
Before reheating your soup, check it to make sure it's still good. It shouldn't smell or look funny. If it does, discard it. Once you've reheated it, give it a little taste. If it tastes funny, discard it. If it tastes okay, serve and enjoy! If you want to avoid the pasta and vegetables getting mushy when reheated, wait to add them to the soup until you're reheating it. This will require some extra effort when you initially make the soup, but it will lead to a higher-quality reheated soup.