Simple & Savory Ideas for Holiday Turkey Leftovers

turkey-cranberry-soupShould you find yourself with leftover turkey this holiday season, rejoice! There’s no end to what you can do with leftover turkey. (Or chicken, for that matter. In fact, just about any leftover meat can be put to a myriad of culinary uses.) This easy-to-make soup includes a host of holiday ingredients: carrots, green onions, spinach, mushrooms, and fresh cranberries. You can throw in whatever is at hand, actually — as long as you have sage and turkey in the mix, you’ll have a piping-hot bowl of holiday tidings. And since you can vary the ingredients according to what’s in your pantry, you’ll never run out of ideas for your leftover turkey.

Turkey, Cranberry & Spinach Soup

Serves 4. Feel free to double or triple the recipe as you like.

2 carrots, peeled and sliced

8 oz. mushrooms, sliced

2 green onions, ends trimmed, sliced

1 small yellow onion, sliced

2 garlic cloves, sliced

32 oz. chicken broth, preferably from pastured birds

Handful chopped cooked turkey or chicken*

Handful fresh/frozen cranberries (they’ll give the soup an unusual-but-pleasant sour kick)

1 T. dried sage

Double handful of baby spinach

Melt a dab of butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the carrots, mushrooms, green onions, onion, and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until onions are turning translucent and mushrooms are shrunken. Pour in the broth and bring to a gentle boil. Stir in the turkey and the cranberries. Crumble in the sage with your fingers — rubbing it right before adding will make the sage more flavorful.

Reduce heat to medium-low and gently simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in the spinach gradually. Baby spinach will wilt almost immediately; if you use curly spinach instead, heat through for 2 minutes to wilt the spinach.

Serve immediately. Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.


* Note that you can freeze leftover turkey or chicken when you first cook it. Just let it thaw in the fridge for a day and then throw it into soups like these!

Courtesy of The Cultured Cook.

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