Turkey Frame Soup


Use the leftovers from the roasted turkey you made for Thanksgiving or Christmas to make this homemade turkey and noodle soup.

Turkey Frame Soup
Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
1 hrs 33 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 3 mins

If you've roasted a whole turkey, don't toss the bones when you are done! This homemade turkey soup recipe utilizes the entire turkey frame to create a rich broth. You can even keep some of the meat on the bones during the cooking process and remove it later. This recipe for leftover turkey is an easy way to get the most out of each turkey you buy.

Flavor the broth with onion, garlic, and salt—that's it! Keeping the seasonings simple allows the rich, meaty flavor of the turkey to shine through. Once the bone broth is done, use it to make a pot of turkey soup. You can add any vegetables you like, our Test Kitchen recommends celery, mushrooms, parsnips, carrots, and cauliflower. You can also add rutabaga, broccoli, and onion. Choose any noodle shape you like but we recommend a medium-sized noodle like egg noodles, penne, rigatoni, or more.

Make this turkey noodle soup recipe ahead and freeze it into individual portions for a quick weekday lunch or dinner. Our helpful guide to freezing soup will walk you through the best ways to store and thaw frozen soup.


  • 1 meaty turkey frame

  • 8 cup water

  • 1 large onion, quartered

  • ½ teaspoon garlic salt

  • Chopped cooked turkey, optional

  • 1 16 ounce can tomatoes, cut up

  • 1 tablespoon instant chicken bouillon granules

  • 1 ½ teaspoon dried oregano, basil, marjoram, or thyme, crushed

  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

  • 3 cup (any combination) sliced celery, carrots, parsnips, or mushrooms; chopped onion or rutabagas; or broccoli or cauliflower flowerets

  • 1 ½ cup medium noodles


  1. Break the turkey frame or cut in half with kitchen shears. Place in a large Dutch oven or kettle.

  2. Add the water, onion, and garlic salt. Bring the mixture to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 1-1/2 hours.

  3. Remove the turkey frame. When it is cool enough to handle, cut the meat off the bones and coarsely chop. If desired, add more cooked turkey meat (enough to equal about 2 cups total). Set the meat aside. Discard bones.

  4. Strain the broth through a sieve lined with 2 layers of 100% cotton cheesecloth and discard the solids.

  5. Return the broth to the Dutch oven. Stir in the undrained tomatoes, bouillon granules, herbs, and pepper. Stir in the vegetables. Return the mixture to boiling and reduce the heat. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

  6. Stir in the noodles. Cover and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes more or until noodles are done and vegetables are crisp-tender. Stir in the cooked turkey and heat through. Serve immediately. Makes 6 main-dish servings.

Test Kitchen Tip: For individual turkey noodle soup servings, prepare the soup and freeze in 1-1/2-cup freezer containers, leaving a half-inch of head space. Seal, label, and freeze the soup for up to 1 month. To serve, transfer 1 portion of the frozen turkey noodle soup mixture to a small saucepan. Cover and cook over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through, stirring the soup occasionally.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

260 Calories
6g Fat
31g Carbs
20g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 260
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6g 8%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Cholesterol 75mg 25%
Sodium 848mg 37%
Total Carbohydrate 31g 11%
Protein 20g
Vitamin C 17.1mg 86%
Calcium 80.8mg 6%
Iron 4mg 22%

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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