Linda’s Unbeatable Turkey Soup

contributed by Deb Reno

Since I was given this recipe from my friend, Linda Rice,  I always make broth this way, then freeze it in a ziploc until needed.  It’s darker & much more flavorful than just boiling the bones and ridiculously more delicious than store-bought broth!  This is a good thing to do with the left-over bones from those rotiserie chickens you buy already c…ooked at the grocery store…makes an additional meal or two out of it and stretches your dollars!!


First, the gross part:  pull all the meat off the bones.  Pull the carcass apart and place it in a metal roasting pan (I have no roaster, so I put mine in a 9″x13″‘ pan…if the carcass is  too big, I use two 9″x13″ pans.) and fling the following on top:

  • 2 or 3 QUARTERED ONIONS (skins on – washed, of course!)
  • CARROTS (skins on, washed)
  • 8 WHOLE CLOVES OF GARLIC (not a typo!!!).

 Drizzle this mess with some OLIVE OIL (maybe a tablespoon or two) and place it in a 425° oven, uncovered for 45 minutes. Remove the pan(s) from the oven and let cool for about 10 minutes. Then put the roaster on the stovetop, (Since I don’t have a roaster, I transfer everything to a big pot, being careful to scrape all of the flavorful browned bits off the bottom of the 9″x13″ pan.) add cold water to about 3/4 of the way up in the pan, bring just to a boil, then reduce to a simmer* (uncovered) for another hour. Strain it;  throw out the bones and boiled veggies – all their goodness is now in your broth.  Place in the fridge for a few hours or overnight;  scrape off the top layer of grease that will have risen to the top and solidified.  Now this incredibly wonderful broth is ready for some action. 

A NOTE for any of you all who are new to boiling the carcass of a bird: the broth, when chilled, will have a jello-like consistency.  Do not be alarmed!  It looks so weird, but tastes AMAZING. When heated, it will thin out and look ‘normal’. 

ROAST TURKEY CARCASS SOUP      Serves a bunch, freezes well.

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 large onions, chopped

4 carrots, sliced

3 celery stalks, sliced

Salt and pepper to taste

Roast Turkey Carcass broth (see above directions)

1/2 to 1 teaspoon of thyme (depending on taste and quantity of soup)

1  bag (about 10 oz.) noodles (Reames brand [sold frozen], is my fave.)

leftover turkey meat, cut into bite-sized pieces (optional)

In a soup pot, heat the olive oil till hot over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook 5 minutes till soft and translucent. Add the carrots and celery and cook another five minutes stirring occasionally. Salt and pepper well to taste.

Now add the Roast Turkey Carcass Broth you just made. Bring everything JUST to a boil; reduce to a simmer.*  Don’t cover the soup. Add the thyme and the noodles.  Serve when the noodles are al dente.

Put in some of your leftover turkey (or chicken), if you’d like, but this broth is so delicious, you might not miss the meat if you don’t!

*If you boil broth for an extended period of time, it becomes cloudy.  To my knowledge, the cloudiness doesn’t effect the taste…but I think a clear broth is more aesthetically pleasing.


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