8 Day-After-Thanksgiving Turkey Soup Ideas That Make Use of Leftovers

Gumbo-Style Turkey Soup
Photo: Greg DuPree

The day after Thanksgiving, we're often left nursing a post-feast food coma and housing a refrigerator laden with leftovers. Piling up a plate of casseroles and topping it all with gravy sounds like a tasty plan, but our favorite way of whittling down the Tupperware tower is transforming the Thanksgiving meal into dishes that are delicious in a new form (like a classic leftover turkey sandwich made with mayo and all the fixings). But if you really want to make the most of your leftover Thanksgiving turkey, you need a good turkey soup recipe.

From Gumbo-style turkey stew to turkey chili and more, these turkey soup ideas offer big batches of comforting, crowd-feeding suppers that'll give you a little more time to recover from the holiday—that is, until it's time to start decorating the Christmas tree.

01 of 08

Slow-Cooker White Chili with Turkey

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe: Slow-Cooker White Chili with Turkey

Consider dinner covered by this slow-cooker white chili. Head out the door on Black Friday and come back hours later to a satisfying meal. Cornmeal helps thicken the mixture and adds a hint of toasty corn flavor.

02 of 08

Leftover Turkey Rice Soup

leftover turkey rice soup
Photographer: Antonis Achilleos, Prop Stylist: Claire Spollen Food Stylist: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipe: Leftover Turkey Rice Soup

In addition to the turkey, you can also make use of leftover veggies and herbs from Thanksgiving in this nourishing rice soup. This hearty soup uses dry sherry for a little sweetness, and cremini mushrooms for earthy, savory notes. You can use turkey broth or chicken, depending on what you have on hand.

03 of 08

Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili with Quinoa

Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili with Quinoa Recipe
Photo: Hector Sanchez

Recipe: Slow Cooker Turkey Chili with Quinoa

Want something healthy and hearty after all that Thanksgiving feasting? This spicy slow-cooker recipe has you covered. Swap in shredded leftover turkey instead of the ground turkey.

04 of 08

Slow-Cooker Turkey and Dumplings Soup

Slow-Cooker Turkey and Dumplings Soup
Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Melissa Gray; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis

Recipe: Slow-Cooker Turkey and Dumplings Soup

With this recipe, you can turn leftover turkey and just 10 minutes of hands-on time into a delicious dumpling dinner. First, chicken broth, turkey, vegetables and herbs cook on low for six or seven hours. Then the dumplings are spooned into the simmering broth—add a splash of leftover gravy for an even richer meal.

05 of 08

Italian-Style Turkey Meatball Soup

Italian-Style Turkey Meatball Soup Recipe
Photo: Hector Sanchez

Recipe: Italian-Style Turkey Meatball Soup

Unless you're hosting an unconventional Thanksgiving meal that features turkey meatballs, swap in your leftover turkey instead. It'll pair just as deliciously with this simple Italian-style soup recipe. At the last moment, stir in any baby greens you have on hand and top with cheese.

06 of 08

Tortilla Turkey Soup

Tortilla Turkey Soup
Iain Bagwell

Recipe: Tortilla Turkey Soup

Forget the bland, the boring, the day-after slump. This tortilla soup, Thanksgiving edition, transforms your turkey into a zingy, Mexican-inspired dinner. This recipe feels light and healthy, too.

07 of 08

Fiesta Turkey Soup

Thanksgiving Menus: Fiesta Turkey Soup With Green Chili Biscuits Recipes
Southern Living

Recipe: Fiesta Turkey Soup

You'll happily throw a fiesta after tasting this 30-minute soup. It's the definition of quick-fix, using leftovers, canned ingredients, and hard-working spices. The zingy Green Chile Biscuit recipe requires just four ingredients.

08 of 08

Gumbo-Style Turkey Soup

Gumbo-Style Turkey Soup
Greg DuPree

Recipe: Gumbo-Style Turkey Soup

It doesn't get much cozier than gumbo. Spend your post-Thanksgiving, football-watching weekend chowing down on this roasted turkey rendition. This soup feeds eight, making it the perfect meal for lingering house guests.

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