If you’re looking for great leftover turkey recipes, this slow cooker leftover turkey casserole is the perfect thing to make on a chilly day when you have some extra holiday turkey to use up!
One thing though, I always think of casseroles as one of those “quick, easy, ready-in-a-flash” type of meals. Then I always frustrate myself when I realize it’s actually going to be an “all afternoon” kinda thing. I mean, first you need to hunt for the stuff, then you need to gather. Then boil the pasta. Then mix everything together. Then top with cheese or whatever. Then, after you’ve already made the thing, it still needs to bake for another hour to come together. So by the time it’s all done, you’ve been working on dinner for 2 hours.
I never considered that I could just toss everything in the crock pot until, well, until I did. And the results were delicious!
If you’ve had your fill of leftover turkey sandwiches, this is a great recipe to make next.
Ingredients Needed for the Leftover Turkey Recipe
- Leftover cooked turkey meat from your Thanksgiving dinner
- Canned cream of chicken soup
- Frozen mixed veggies
- Basic seasonings from your pantry: Onion powder, granulated garlic, black pepper, poultry seasoning
- Water or vegetable broth
- Uncooked dried pasta
- Shredded cheddar cheese
It’s important to note that this recipe is very forgiving, so feel free to make substitutions so that you can use up whatever Thanksgiving leftovers you have in your fridge. You can use chopped fresh vegetables such as carrot pieces, cauliflower, frozen peas, and sliced celery in place of, or in addition to, the frozen veggie mix. Fresh thyme, parsley, and/or rosemary can be used in place of the poultry seasoning if you have some you need to use up.
If you don’t have enough roasted turkey leftovers, you can even use rotisserie chicken in this creamy, comforting noodle dish with all the flavors of your favorite Thanksgiving turkey roast.
Making Your Leftover Turkey Casserole
Here’s the basic method for preparing this amazing comfort-food dish.
Gather your basic ingredients: 2 cans of Cream of Chicken soup or a similar condensed cream soup to make the casserole saucy, some frozen veggies, a splash of milk, and some leftover frozen turkey. It doesn’t matter if the frozen turkey is all stuck together in a big ball because it will all break down and soften wonderfully during cooking. You can leave it like that, or you can add in a few herbs and spices. I always like to use onion and garlic powder, black pepper, and a whole bunch of poultry seasoning. The spices really make your house smell like a delicious turkey dinner is being cooked again, and you’ll feel like you must have done something really competent as a homemaker if your house smells like that.
The fact that you can make all those things happen in one easy weeknight meal is pretty fun.
So toss all those ingredients in the slow cooker.
Leave it to cook on low for about 6 to 8 hours or so. If you want to feel like you’re doing something, give it a stir every once in a while.
It will soon look like this! Kind of like a delicious turkey soup or stew.
When you have about an hour to go until dinner time, throw in about 2-ish cups of pasta, and about 2-ish cups of extra liquid too. I just used water, but you can get fancy with chicken stock, white wine, or whatever you’re inspired to try.
Just before you eat, top the whole thing with some grated cheese. You can add a toasted breadcrumb topping as well if you’re feeling fancy. I would probably not recommend adding your leftover cranberry sauce to this particular dish, but if you really love cranberries like I do, it might be worth a try anyway.
The Finished Leftover Turkey Casserole
Dinner is made! You’ve just spent a total of about 3 minutes working on this, but you’ve carried that triumphant “I’ve got dinner under control, and you know because you can smell it cooking” feeling with you all day!
Good job, you!
Wasn’t that fun?
And that’s how I’ll be doing all my casserole-making from now on. 🙂
Give it a try! Here’s the printable version of the recipe.
If you're looking for great leftover turkey recipes, this slow cooker leftover turkey casserole is the perfect thing to make on a chilly day when you have some extra holiday turkey to use up!
- 2 cans Cream of chicken soup
- 1 cup Frozen mixed veggies
- 1 splash Milk
- 2 cups Leftover turkey pieces frozen or not
- 1 tbsp Onion powder
- 1/2 tsp Garlic powder
- 1 tsp Poultry seasoning
- 1/4 tsp Black pepper
- 1.5 cups Shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 cups Uncooked pasta
- 2 cups Water or broth
Combine the turkey, mixed veggies, soup, milk, and seasonings in your slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
About an hour before you want to eat, add in the pasta and the water or broth. Stir, cover, and continue to cook.
Just before you eat, top everything with the shredded cheese.
Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.