Day-After-Thanksgiving Turkey Leftover Soup (with video)

Turkey Leftover Soup the day-after-Thanksgiving, makes for the best turkey soup with all the flavors and memories of Thanksgiving dinner; the meal we wait all year for. 

Leftover Turkey Soup - Day-After-Thanksgiving
Leftover Turkey Soup – Day-After-Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Turkey

Why don’t we eat turkey and turkey soup all year?

It seems that the most popular day to make a turkey soup, is the day after Thanksgiving. And I’m right there with everyone else!

Undoubtedly, that big ole roasted turkey has the perfect jus, bones and tender meat, from hours  of roasting in a hot oven. 

So why not savor every ounce of flavor from the meat we wait all year to make, in a great soup!

Thanksgiving Turkey To Be Roasted
Thanksgiving Turkey To Be Roasted

We All Love Day-After-Thanksgiving Turkey Leftovers

I don’t know about you but I spent nearly a week prepping, peeling and baking all the sides I would serve for Thanksgiving. 

Despite the fact that many at the table will only pick at the veggies and dive into the meat, I still make way too many options anyway. 

You just can’t make a Thanksgiving feast without green beans and other fresh veggies, sweet potatoes in some form, and of course potatoes, whether mashed, or a fancy Dauphinois or Fondant; fact is, there is going to be leftovers.

But you know what, I think we look forward to the next day meal too, because it’s the best way to create a good turkey soup recipe, with plenty of leftover turkey meat and lots of Thanksgiving leftovers!

The Best Homemade Turkey Soup Recipe

Whether we roasted a small turkey or a big ole bird, the best flavor for a delicious soup, is a turkey carcass soup. 

Loaded with nutrients, gelatin and flavor, homemade turkey stock is the easiest soup we will make all throughout soup season. 

A roast turkey has already packed a punch of flavor, when the skin seers in a hot oven, fresh herbs having been tucked between the flesh and the skin, even the essence of the stuffing you may have tucked inside of the carcass. 

All those flavors are ready and waiting to make the best homemade turkey broth. 

Let’s Talk About Why We Need A Great Bone Broth

Bone broth is something I make throughout the entire soup season, whether it’s from leftover chicken I roasted or bought already roasted, or bone broth made from beef or fish

It’s so easy to do; all you need is a large pot or large stock pot, lots of fresh herbs, or dried herbs, such as bay leaves or sage leaves you may have dried from your summer stash. 

The best part about this perfect meal is that the healthy ingredients, such as celery stalks, lots of onions and garlic, actually contribute to an Immune Boost healthy soup, you might want to freeze small amounts of for cold and flu season when it hits. 

Abundant Feasting - A Cooks Fantasy Or Nightmare!
Abundant Feasting – A Cooks Fantasy Or Nightmare!

Leftover Veggies

A great deal of time and effort goes into the sides we prepare for the holidays. Eventually we get around to eating all we made, or it ends up in the trash. 

Obviously, throwing all this expensive produce, not to mention hard work, away is not the intention.

However, let’s face it, we fast become overwhelmed with the abundance on a feast day. 

So, why not remember all the herbs, spices, butter or oils we used to make the veggies and realize how fabulous they will taste in a soup!

Fresh Herbs For Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Soup Are Still Abundant In November
Fresh Herbs For Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Soup Are Still Abundant In November

Let Me Show You How To Make A Great Bone Broth

Indeed this easy turkey soup recipe needs bones, and a bone broth soup is so easy to make that it almost doesn’t need a recipe; but I will attempt to give you the one I have created. 

While Thanksgiving day will be busy as the whole family seeks to make their way to your table, I can attest to the fact that the easy way to strip the leftover turkey carcass for your day-after turkey soup, is before you put it in the fridge. 

A Few Extra Steps On Thanksgiving Day

Before the day ends, make it a point to pull the turkey breast meat off the bone, along with the turkey leg and any turkey bones that can be split in half and tossed into a large pot.

After all, another favorite ‘day-after’ meal, is the infamous leftover sandwich you will probably want for lunch tomorrow while you are making this soup!

Carcass Bones

Once the bones are reduced to the size of a pot, fresh lemon juice, lots of cups of water, fresh parsley, along with the dried herbs, go on top the stove to simmer on a lower heat for a few hours.

This assures extracting all the luscious flavors for the best leftover turkey soup. 

Once this part of the soup stock is made, remove all the solid pieces from the broth to throw away, and from here, the sky’s the limit to what you can put into your yummy turkey soup!

Turkey Scraps Make The Best Turkey Broth
Turkey Scraps Make The Best Turkey Broth

Making A Hearty Turkey Soup Is So Easy

Indeed this soup is so easy that it almost doesn’t need a recipe but I will attempt to give you the one I have created. 

Regardless of how much turkey remains on the bone after we carve and indulge, those bones, skin and drippings in the pan are where it’s at!

This year for the holidays, I roasted a 25 pound turkey. 

Can you believe I poured off 8-cups of liquid from the turkey after it roasted?

Furthermore, when I boil the bones and skin in a little water, I will have nearly another 8-cups of broth, broth that is also going to be loaded with flavor. 

Equipment Needed

Leftover turkey and veggies
Leftover Turkey & Veggies

Ingredient Needed

  • Leftover turkey and bones
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Leftover herbs
  • Leftover potatoes
  • Leftover green beans
  • Leftover carrots
  • Leftover corn

The Secret Soup Ingredient – Veggies

Meanwhile, it’s time to give attention to the leftover veggies. 

I make my green beans with olive oil, onions, lots of lemon and sometimes peppers or tricolored tomatoes. 

You may have a green bean casserole.

My mashed potatoes have nearly a stick of butter, mashed into ten pounds of potatoes, seasoned with herbs; you may have the same.

Likewise, my corn has been given attention to flavors, as have my carrots and other veggies. 

Since all of our leftover veggies are already abundant with flavor, and already cooked, we need only to add them to the turkey soup, once the stock has been prepared. 

This is the perfect way to repurpose leftover veggies, no matter what they have been cooked in or with!

Leftover Thanksgiving Veggies Ready To Become Turkey Soup
Leftover Thanksgiving Veggies Ready To Become Turkey Soup
Leftover Turkey Soup

Day-After-Thanksgiving Turkey Leftover Soup

Leftover Turkey Soup is loaded with all the flavors of the roasted turkey and all the leftover veggies from Thanksgiving. 
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Turkey Leftover Soup
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours
Servings: 8 servings


  • Large Soup Pot
  • Large slotted spoon


  • 10-25 lb Leftover Turkey bones and carcass
  • 2 qt Water as needed
  • 2 cups Turkey broth from roasting pan
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 Poultry bundle of herbs sage, parsley, thyme
  • 2-3 Bay leaves
  • 1 Celery stalk bundle finely chopped including leaves
  • 2 Large onions rough chopped
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 2-3 cups Leftover potatoes mashed or cubed
  • 2 cups Leftover green beans
  • 2 cups Leftover carrots
  • 1 1/2 cups Leftover corn
  • 2-3 cups Leftover Turkey meat


  • Break down the turkey before it has been refrigerated, as it is easiest at this time.
  • In a large pot, over medium heat, stove top, place the olive oil, chopped onions and celery and sauté for 5-minutes to caramelize the onions. 
  • Place the wing tips, skin, scraps from the bottom of the pan the turkey was roasted in. 
    Crack the carcass in half to fit into the pan and place it in. 
    Pour a little boiling water into the bottom of the pan the turkey was roasted in, scrape all the brown bits from the bottom, pour this into the pot with the bones. 
    Top it off with the remaining water, salt and pepper. 
    Bring to a boil, turn down low and simmer for an hour, covered. 
  • With a slotted spoon, remove all the bones and scraps. Pick off any remaining meat on the bones and add back to the pot of stock. 
  • The pot of leftover turkey bone broth is now ready to add all the remaining ingredients. Simmer until it mixes well and serve. 



  • Poultry herbs often consist of sage, thyme and rosemary, however use what you like or have leftover from Thanksgiving dinner. 
Day-After-Thanksgiving Turkey Leftover Soup
Day-After-Thanksgiving Turkey Leftover Soup
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