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This Turkey Wild Rice Soup is the perfect way to use up Thanksgiving leftover turkey. It’s loaded with veggies, warm and hearty, and so easy to prepare!

wild rice soup with leftover turkey in a bowl

Easy Wild Rice Soup with Turkey

Do you ever find yourself with leftover turkey after the holidays? Well, thanks to this Turkey Wild Rice Soup recipe, you’ll know just how to use them up! I make this every single year. 

This soup is packed full of chewy wild rice, tender leftover turkey, and whatever veggies you have on hand. 

I love the heartiness, flavors, and textures. Plus, if you want to get really efficient with your leftovers, you can use the turkey carcass to make turkey bone broth/stock. It takes the soup to another level. The better the broth, the better the soup!

No turkey? You can totally use leftover shredded chicken, too!

Leftover turkey and wild rice soup

Ingredients Needed:

  • Butter – used to sauté the veggies.
  • Veggies – we’re using a mix of onion, carrot, celery, and baby bella mushrooms, but feel free to use whatever veggies you have on hand.
  • Garlic – use fresh garlic for the best flavor.
  • Seasonings – we use a simple blend of salt, pepper, dried thyme, and dried parsley.
  • Turkey Stock – or chicken broth. Make homemade broth with leftover turkey carcass or buy a good quality store-bought version.
  • Fish Sauce – this is optional, but adds a delicious umami flavor.
  • Wild Rice – you’ll need 1 cup of dry wild rice. It cooks right in the soup.
  • Turkey – any leftover turkey will work. You could also use leftover or rotisserie chicken!

How to Make Turkey Rice Soup From Leftover Turkey

You’ll want to pick off as much of the meat as possible from the turkey after it has been carved. If you are able to, pick all the meat from the turkey while it’s still warm because it is much easier to do!

Our recipe calls for about 2-3 cups of leftover turkey meat. Once you’ve picked off meat from the turkey you should make a bone broth with it to use in your soup!

  1. Sauté the veggies: Heat butter or oil in a large pot, then add in onion, carrot, celery, salt, and pepper. Cook until softening, then add mushrooms and garlic. Cook for another 5 minutes.
  2. Add soup ingredients: Add in the thyme parsley, turkey stock, fish sauce, and rice. Bring to a simmer, then cover and cook for 30 minutes.
  3. Add turkey and simmer: Mix in the turkey, then simmer again, uncovered, until the rice is cooked.

How to Make Homemade Turkey Broth

Making turkey stock with the leftover carcass is so simple and such a great way to use up all of the turkey. No waste win! I usually use the instant pot, but you can also do it on the stovetop! 

  1. Place the whole carcass, a few aromatics, spices, and water into the instant pot. 
  2. Cook on high pressure for 50 minutes. 

If you’d rather not make your own, you can use a good-quality bone broth or stock from the store instead. 

Can You Put Uncooked Rice in Soup?

Yes! In fact, you should put uncooked rice in this soup. It cooks perfectly right in the broth. If you put already cooked rice in it, you’ll end up with over-cooked rice.

What Vegetables Are Good in Wild Rice Soup?

We choose to include a classic blend of onions, carrots, celery and mushrooms! But if you have other leftover veggies like green beans you can add those in at the very end of the cooking time just to reheat!

two bowls of turkey and wild rice soup

Tips and Notes

  • If you are using leftover turkey, pull off as much of the meat as possible from the turkey after it has been carved. Ideally, while it is still warm. This makes it so much easier to do.
  • Make your own broth. It’s just so good and so easy! The better the broth, the better the soup.
  • Use whatever veggies you have on-hand. We use a combination of onions, carrots, celery, and mushrooms, but feel free to use any other leftover veggies (like green beans) that you might have after the holidays. Keep in mind that different veggies take different amounts of time to heat through.

Serving Suggestions

Wild rice soup with turkey is a complete meal all on its own thanks to the veggies, grain, and chicken. However, it’s delicious served with a couple of side dishes too, especially if you have other holiday leftovers. It’s also great with Crackers and crusty bread!

How to Store Wild Rice Soup

Storing: Store leftover wild rice soup in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for 2-3 months. 

Freezing Instructions: 

  1. Let your soup cool completely before transferring into a freezer-safe gallon-size bag or containter.
  2. Seal and then place in the freezer.
  3. Will last for up to 3 months.
  4. When you’re ready to serve again, thaw in the fridge if frozen, then warm on low on the stove, or even the crockpot, until heated all the way through.

Other Ways To Use Leftover Turkey

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Leftover Turkey and Wild Rice Soup

Turkey Wild Rice Soup

4.82 from 16 votes
This Turkey Wild Rice Soup is the perfect way to use up Thanksgiving leftover turkey. It’s loaded with veggies, warm and hearty, and so easy to prepare!
Servings 6
Prep Time 10 minutes


  • 1 tablespoon butter or avocado oil
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 3 large carrots sliced to 1/4"
  • 3 celery stalks diced
  • 1 cup baby bella mushrooms diced
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 5 cups turkey stock or chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 2-3 cups shredded cooked turkey breast leftover thanksgiving turkey works great for this, or shredded chicken works as well


  • In a large dutch oven or stock pot, over medium heat and add butter/oil.
  • When hot add onions, carrots, celery and salt and pepper to the pot and cook until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the mushrooms and garlic and cook another 5 minutes.
  • Add thyme, parsley and 4 cups of the turkey stock, fish sauce, and rice.
  • Bring to a simmer and then cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Add the turkey and simmer, uncovered, another 30-50 minutes, until the rice is cooked.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning and add more broth if needed.


  • This recipe was developed for thanksgiving leftovers, but it will work great with leftover chicken as well.
  • If the rice isn't done, simmer for longer as desired.
  • Add more broth if needed. If needed, then adust/increase spices as well.


Serving: 6gCalories: 213kcalCarbohydrates: 30.2gProtein: 22gFat: 0.7gSaturated Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 765mgFiber: 3.6gSugar: 3.9g
Keyword: turkey and wild rice soup, turkey wild rice soup, wild rice soup, wild rice soup recipe, wild rice soup with turkey
Course: Soup
Method: Stove Top
Author: Lexi

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Recipe Rating


  1. 2 stars
    Lexi. Make sure your readers know the difference between real….Native American Harvested rice, vs the commercial crap. Google the difference. I used native, followed your recipe and now I have a casserole. Flavor yes. Soup no.

  2. 5 stars
    Really enjoyed this recipe. I did use the 90 second Uncle Ben’s wild rice but only added it in the last 10 minutes after I cooked it in the microwave. I also use better than bouillon for my broth. Excellent recipe.

  3. 5 stars
    I used dried mushrooms and added a couple handfuls of fresh spinach, squeeze of lemon, extra broth, some white wine. Per my husband, perfect! And I agree. This is a great recipe that you can modify to your liking. I made it last year and I found it in my thanksgiving recipes. This is going to get moved up to the front of my soup list.