Use leftover turkey to make this easy 30 minute turkey leek soup recipe with potatoes. Fresh vegetables and herbs make this soup a true comfort food experience. It's going to become a family favorite.
It's that time of year when you have leftover turkey sitting in your fridge. If you're looking for the perfect way to use up those Thanksgiving leftovers, try this delicious turkey leek soup. I think you'll love it.
It has turkey, leeks, and potatoes in a flavorful broth seasoned with a handful of herbs. It has a quick prep time and is just as (if not more) tasty the next day.
Plus, it is simple to freeze and reheat for lunch or dinner.
Turkey Soup Ingredients
- Turkey is the main ingredient. This soup is a great way to use leftover Thanksgiving turkey.
Strip that turkey carcass of all the meat you can get to avoid food waste. Dark and white meat are both tasty in turkey leek soup.
- Potatoes make the soup more filling. I prefer Yukon Gold potatoes for their buttery flavor. But russet potatoes also taste very good in the soup.
- Leeks, celery, garlic, and onions give flavor to the soup.
- Chicken, vegetable, or turkey broth form the base of the soup. Make your own broth or use your favorite brand.
My favorite way to make soup broth is to use Better Than Bouillon soup base mixed with water.
- Herbs.The best herbs to use in turkey soup are sage, rosemary, thyme, oregano, and parsley.
Dried herbs are often better for cooking in the soup unless the herb is hearty, like fresh thyme. And fresh herbs are best for garnishing the soup once cooked.
When using dried herbs, make sure they haven’t expired. Otherwise, they won’t give much flavor to the soup.
- Fresh lemon juice. To brighten the soup, add lemon juice right before serving. It adds the missing piece to the recipe.
- Swap out the turkey and replace it with chicken. This is the easiest substitution.
- Turkey stock or chicken stock can be used interchangeably. You can also try vegetable stock, though that isn't my preference.
- Use Italian seasoning in place of all the herbs in the recipe.
HOW TO MAKE TURKEY SOUP
This is an easy dinner to make in a hurry.
STEP 1: PREPARE THE VEGETABLES
- Mince the garlic, dice the onion, slice the celery and leeks, and peel and cube the potatoes.
- Soak the sliced leeks in a bowl of water. Swish around with your fingers to clean and remove the dirt.
- Shred the cooked turkey or cut it into small cubes.
STEP 2: SOFTEN THE VEGETABLES
- Add the olive oil and onion to a stock pot and heat over medium heat.
- Cook the onion for 3 to 4 minutes, until it begins to sweat and soften. Then add the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Add the leek and celery and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes until they begin to soften.
STEP 3: COOK THE SOUP
- Pour in the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
- Cover the large pot with a lid and bring the soup to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for for 10 to 15 minutes or until the potatoes are soft, but not mushy.
STEP 4: ADJUST SEASONINGS
- Taste and season with a little bit of salt and black pepper.
STEP 5: GARNISH & SERVE
- Garnish with fresh parsley or toasted pepitas. Serve warm with breadsticks.
- Use ground turkey to make a hearty ground turkey soup recipe. Everything else in the recipe stays the same.
- Leave out the turkey meat to change the recipe to vegetarian potato leek soup. Use vegetable broth instead of chicken or turkey broth.
- Add wild rice for more substance. You will need to add additional broth when making a soup with rice.
How to Store Leftovers
Store any leftover soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator. The soup will keep for 3 to 4 days.
This soup is the ultimate comfort food to bring to work for lunch. Reheat a serving size in a microwave-safe bowl in the microwave for 1 minute. Stir, test the temperature, and heat again for 30 seconds if needed.
To reheat a larger portion, heat in a large pan on the stove top over medium-high heat until it boils. Reduce to medium-low heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
How to Freeze Turkey Soup
This is a simple recipe to freeze. Freeze it in either a freezer-safe airtight container or a freezer zip-top bag. Here's how:
- Cool the soup completely.
- Transfer the soup to a freezer-safe container. This is a great soup to freeze in individual portion sizes.
- Label the container with the contents and date.
- Freeze up to 6 months.
To thaw, remove the soup and thaw it in the refrigerator overnight. Then it is ready to eat the next day.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH TURKEY SOUP
Any type of bread goes well with turkey soup. Try a dinner roll, fresh bread sticks, or even cornbread. Grab the whole list of the best side dishes to pair with turkey soup.
Craving More Soup?
Here's a few soup recipes your whole family will love. They are all easy meals that can be made on the stove, in a slow cooker, or in the Instant Pot. They all freeze well too.
- Butternut squash soup. Cream cheese makes this an even creamier soup that normal. Add a dash of cayenne pepper for a kick.
- Pumpkin soup with apples and ginger. Smooth, seasonal, and craveworthy.
- Taco soup with ground beef. This is an easy recipe that comes together with mostly canned ingredients.
- Cajun 15-bean soup. Shrimp, sausage, okra, and more. You gotta try this recipe.
- Vegetable soup with ground beef. Veggies and protein make a hearty soup.
Looking for More Turkey Recipes?
- Turkey salad with fresh greens, turkey, apples, and blue cheese.
- Baked turkey sliders. See also the best bread for turkey sliders and what to serve with turkey sliders.
Turkey Leek Soup
- 3½ cups of turkey or chicken, cooked and shredded
- 1 cup of potato, peeled and cubed (About 2 medium Yukon Gold or russet potatoes)
- 2 medium leeks, white base and light green parts, sliced (about 1 cup)
- ⅓ cup of celery chopped (about 1 stalk)
- ½ cup of onion, diced
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1½ tablespoons of olive oil
- 6 cups of turkey or chicken broth (Better Than Bouillon chicken base recommended)
- 1½ teaspoon of dried sage (or 1½ tablespoons fresh, chopped)
- 1 teaspoon of dried oregano (or 2 fresh sprigs)
- ½ teaspoon of dried thyme (or 1 fresh sprig)
- 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary, crushed (or 1 fresh sprig)
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried)
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- ¼ teaspoon of black pepper freshly ground
- 2 to 3 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice
- SHRED the leftover turkey.
- PEEL and CUBE the potatoes.
- SLICE the leeks. Soak them in a bowl of water for a few minutes. Swish them around to remove any dirt. Then drain them.
- CHOP the celery.
- MINCE the onion and garlic.
- ADD the olive oil and onion to a cold stock pot. Turn on medium heat.
- SWEAT the onion slowly and cook it for 3 to 4 minutes until it begins to soften.
- ADD the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
- ADD the celery and leek and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more until they begin to soften.
- POUR in the broth, turkey, potatoes, sage, oregano, thyme, rosemary, and parsley.
- STIR to combine.
- COVER and bring to a boil.
- LOWER HEAT and SIMMER for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are soft, but not mushy.
- REMOVE the soup from the heat and add the fresh lemon juice. Stir to combine all ingredients.
- TASTE and add salt and pepper. Adjust seasonings as needed.
- SERVE with dinner rolls, bread sticks, or cornbread.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.
- Freeze leftovers in a freezer-safe container for up to 6 months.