Monday, November 28, 2016

Beyond the Leftovers - Turkey Stock & Turkey Pot Pie

Thanksgiving is over.  It always seems surprising to me because of such build up to Thanksgiving and for all the work that goes into the one big meal.  It is definitely one of my favorite meals of the year, how can it not be with all those delicious dishes!

My favorite part of the big meal though?  The leftovers.

I’m sure that you all have been eating leftovers for several days like we have, but the leftovers will continue to go a lot farther in our house.

Let me explain.


Whenever we have a turkey – which is honestly only once a year – I want to make sure that I use up the turkey.  Not just the white meat on Thanksgiving, and some turkey sandwiches or a turkey and rice soup, which are all great things in their own right, but I also want to be able to use those leftovers during our very busy Christmas season and into the New Year.

One way that I have done that in the past is to put together turkey pot pie in a bag – literally just cut up turkey and gravy in a freezer bag.  Then when I want to make a pie, I only need to take the bag out of the freezer, let it thaw overnight put in a pie crust and then throw some frozen veggies in (my kids like green beans and peas).  Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes, and then turn the oven down to 350 degrees and let it go until the crust is done and it is bubbling – super easy!

The other way that I really like to use up the turkey, though, is to make turkey stock. 

I love to make my own stock, I typically make veggie stock most of the time because onions carrots and celery are all pretty inexpensive to get at the store, much more so than purchasing those cartons of organic vegetable stock. 

But, I do love a good bone broth in the winter. 

Bone broth is incredibly healthy for you – especially during the winter time.  The minerals it contains are all immune boosting, which is important with all the germs going around.  It also contains healing compounds such as proline, glycine, collagen, and glutamine.  And the collagen in bone broth helps to heal your gut lining. (source)

See, definitely a great thing to have on hand during the winter!

Bone broth is incredibly simple to make – take leftover turkey bones (it is the turkey carcass, let's just accept that is what it is called), put in a very large stock pot (10qt or larger), cover with water, and simmer all.day.long.  The all day part is the most important.  You need to give the bones time to release all the great nutrients.

Once you have simmered the turkey, you can then let it cool overnight and then put into gallon size freezer bags to lay flat and freeze (then conveniently stack) to use for soups, stews, and chili throughout the winter. 

Today is the day that I plan to start my bone broth, typically I do it over the weekend, but we were busy putting up our tree, and I forgot to put it in.  So my house will smell delicious today!

What are some ways that you use up leftovers?  Do you make bone broth?

19 comments:

  1. We do a bone broth from the ham bone, and add beans to it. The most delicious part of the ham!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  3. oohhhh this is something I will have to do. My mom loves to cook ham and turkey on Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
  4. This sounds amazing! I will have to try this, I am tired of the same old turkey leftovers so this sounds great!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I too love Thanksgiving leftovers. I never really get tired of them because they're only around a few days of the year!

    ReplyDelete
  6. This was my first time making turkey and I didn't want any of it going to waste. Bone stock was so interesting to make, I think it's so good to use the whole thing and not let it go to waste

    ReplyDelete
  7. I made bone broth and we had a couple days of leftovers. Next week I'll make turkey pot pie or soup. It's always yummy!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I have never, ever made my own broth. I always just buy it. However, this bone broth sounds simple to make and so great for battling all those germs in the winter months!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I need to give this a try, as I have some turkey bones in the fridge right now. Usually we toss them out, but I love the idea of this.

    ReplyDelete
  10. There is something so comforting about a bone broth, made right in your home, with succulent veggies and noodles added later.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I just used my turkey stock last night to make soup! I used the juices from the roasting pan as a starter.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I've always wanted to do this but never make it this far. I've heard it makes to die for broth though

    ReplyDelete
  13. My favourite part of any meal is the leftovers too. What a great idea to make it into stock instead of wasting it.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I need to do this after Christmas. We don't tend to have a lot of left overs being a family of 9 but when we do I NEED to do stuff like this. I need more turkey pot pie in my life. - Jeanine

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love to make homemade stock! My favorite it to buy a rotisserie chicken and throw the bones and some veggies in the crockpot to make stock!

    ReplyDelete
  16. I only made bone broth from chicken so far. This is definitely something to keep in mind!

    ReplyDelete
  17. We didn't have thanksgiving at our home this year so we couldn't bring home any leftovers. Bummer I know!! This looks so good!!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I've heard great things about bone broth. I'll have to try it next time we do a turkey.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Any time I have a turkey or chicken dinner, I make a bone broth. Best way to stretch out another meal!

    ReplyDelete

I love to hear from my readers and try to respond to all comments either here or through e-mail. Thank you for taking the time to comment!