Put your leftover turkey to good use by making some delicious homemade Turkey Stock! Fresh veggies and herbs make this broth flavorful, along with that leftover turkey carcass that you shouldn’t just toss out. After you break that wishbone, enjoy your good luck by making this truly delicious turkey stock!

Two glass jars of stock are placed on a white surface next to green herbs.

Turkey Stock

Now that the bird’s been thoroughly carved and picked at, you’re stuck with one thing after Thanksgiving dinner – a carcass full of bones! What are you to do? While everyone else may throw out their carcass, put yours to good use by making this herbaceous, flavorful turkey stock that you can use in an array of different recipes! Plus, using the turkey carcass instead of immediately tossing it is a great way to keep the local raccoons from digging through your garbage.

Once turkey day is officially over, possibly my favorite part of Thanksgiving begins… the many days of enjoying leftovers! While I like to have fun with recipes like Ross Geller’s Thanksgiving Leftover Turkey Sandwich (shout out to my fellow Friends fans!), I also like making more simple recipes like this turkey stock. The best part about it is that not only will the turkey stock make one tasty meal, but if you have enough, you can use it in SO many different dishes for up to a week!

This homemade turkey stock recipe is also exponentially better than anything you’ll find in a store-bought container. It’s much more natural, for starters, as it’s not loaded with artificial flavors and preservatives like so many of those on the grocery store shelves. Instead, it’s made with delicious, natural ingredients like carrots, red onion, garlic, sage, peppercorns, and so much more! All of these mouthwatering ingredients mix together with the turkey flavor to create a richly flavored turkey broth that you’ll be craving again the minute it’s all gone.

All of the ingredients for turkey stock are placed in a large pot.

How to Make It

You’re going to love how easy it really is to make homemade turkey stock!

Add all of the ingredients. Place the carcass in a large stockpot and add the remaining ingredients.

Add water. Add the water until the carcass is submerged adding more water if needed.

Simmer. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low. Simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Cool. Turn the heat off and allow the stock to cool for 30 minutes to an hour.

Strain. Strain the stock through a fine mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth discarding the turkey carcass, vegetables and herbs.

Cool and skim. Cool completely and skim the fat from the stock.

Chill. Refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.

Enjoy! Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for 3-4 months.

Two full jars of broth are presented on a white surface with a cutting board in the background.

Can I freeze turkey stock?

You sure can! After all, why just enjoy it the week of Thanksgiving? If you want to make this stock during Thanksgiving and enjoy it later, that’ll work! Just let the stock cool to room temperature before placing it in an airtight container. Once frozen, the stock will stay fresh for up to 3 months. You can thaw it by placing the frozen stock in a pot on your stove top and reheating over medium high heat until melted.

Can I use dried herbs instead of fresh?

Yes, but keep in mind that fresh herbs are much more aromatic and will yield more pleasant smelling broth. I also prefer to use fresh herbs in this recipe for the taste, as stock tends to taste a bit fresher when made with fresh herbs. However, if you can only get your hands on dried herbs, they’ll also get the job done.

Two open glass jars are filled with turkey broth.

Now that you have homemade turkey stock, here’s how to use it!

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Two glass jars of stock are placed on a white surface next to green herbs.

Get the Recipe: Leftover Turkey Stock

Put that leftover turkey to good use and stock up on leftover Turkey Stock. Perfect for soups, stews and your holiday gravy.
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Ingredients

  • 1 turkey carcass, broken down into quarters
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 3 celery ribs
  • 1 red onion, quartered
  • 1 garlic bulb, cut in half horizontally
  • 1 bunch sage leaves
  • 10-12 thyme sprigs
  • 3-4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon peppercorns
  • 4 quarts water

Equipment

  • stockpot

Instructions 

  • Place the carcass in a large stockpot and add the remaining ingredients.
  • Add the water until the carcass is submerged adding more water if needed.
  • Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low. Simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  • Turn the heat off and allow the stock to cool for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Strain the stock through a fine mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth discarding the turkey carcass, vegetables and herbs.
  • Cool completely and skim the fat from the stock.
  • Refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
  • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for 3-4 months.

Notes

Turkey stock can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months.
Calories: 30kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 51mg, Sodium: 1355mg, Potassium: 110mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 3982IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 25mg, Iron: 1mg