How to Make Turkey Broth with Thanksgiving Leftovers
Minimal Ingredients, Paleo, Easy
Make a delicious and homemade turkey broth with your Thanksgiving leftovers in this simple and easy to prepare Paleo recipe.
If this is your first time here, I have something I need to say. I AM FRUGAL. I despise paying more than I should, I dislike not having a coupon, and I absolutely disapprove of wasting… food.
When it comes to big holiday meals such as Thanksgiving, you are bound to have plenty of leftovers. This can be a great thing, but it can also be a bad thing if you don’t know how to utilize the leftovers correctly.
Okay, the only wrong way to utilizing leftovers – is not using them!!
This past Thanksgiving, I finally got a pasture-raised turkey from a local farm I’ve been dreaming of. He was much bigger than I was expecting, but I had plans to utilize every part of him to make this delicious aromatic enriched and nutrient-dense turkey broth.
I broke my turkey carcass into parts since it was so big, I used half of to make this recipe and I froze the other half to make more at a later date.
I suggest leaving any small turkey trimmings and skin on the carcass to provide your broth with more flavor. Unless your turkey is picked clean from your ‘cave family,’ I wouldn’t worry about taking the extra time to remove everything.
You’ll want to read this blog post in its entirety for more helpful tips and tricks you’d normally by-pass. Or if you are feeling lucky, jump to the recipe below and get started!
Either way, I’d love to hear how your homemade turkey broth turned out, so please leave a comment and share it with your friends and family.
How to Make Turkey Broth
You’ll never purchase store-bought broth again after making it yourself. (Seriously)!! It’s not only easy, but it is budget-friendly. Use your turkey broth interchangeably with chicken or vegetable broth in any recipe!
1. Place turkey carcass into a 6-quart or larger crockpot and immerse with enough water to cover completely.
Tip: We made a 20-pound turkey this Thanksgiving and I was able to fit half its carcass into my 6-quart crockpot and froze the rest for later.
2. Cover and cook on low for 12 to 24 hours or until broth is aromatic and has reached a golden color.
3. Allow the broth to cool for 1 hour before moving onto the next step.
Tip: Broth will be HOT to handle!
4. Carefully remove the bones and meat with a slotted spoon or tongs and discard.
5. Secure a piece of cheesecloth over a large bowl with a rubber band or clothespins and slowly pour the broth through the cheesecloth straining any large particles.
Tip: I used a measuring cup to transfer the broth from the crockpot to the bowl. It was far less messy!
6. Transfer bone broth into an airtight container(s) and store in the fridge for 2 weeks (or see tips below for more storing options)!!
Tip: When making broth, it is normal for the fat to float to the surface once it is cool. I love leaving it in for a rich and full flavor, but you can skim it off and use it later (or discard it – but not recommended).
How to Store Turkey Broth Three Ways
Get the most out of your turkey broth by storing it with these three methods:
Refrigerator – Store some or all of your turkey broth in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks in the fridge.
Canning – This method should only be used if you are comfortable canning items. Always disinfect canning jars, lids, and tools beforehand. It’s best to can the turkey broth while it is still hot, this will help the lid seal for long term storage. A properly canned broth should last between 2 to 5 years in a dark and cool cabinet or pantry.
Freeze – Pour broth into an ice cube tray(s) and position onto a baking sheet and lay flat in the freezer for 4 to 6 hours or until frozen. Remove frozen broth cubes and place them into a freezer-safe plastic bag or container for 6 months to a year.
Note: Each cube is roughly 1 ounce. 8 cubes = 1 cup.
Mix it UP – If I know I’m preparing a soup or casserole soon; I’ll store enough in the refrigerator and freeze or can the rest! (Depending how big of a turkey you have, you may get more or less than 32 ounces).
Essential Equipment to Make Homemade Turkey Broth
Crockpot – (Otherwise known as the slow cooker). Crockpots are perfect for ‘setting and forgetting,’ which is definitive for this recipe! Come home to the aromas of Thanksgiving dinner without cooking all day!
More Paleo Broths and Soups
Chicken Bone Broth – This easy to prepare and budget-friendly crockpot made broth will give you the base for all your broth-based meals at a fraction of the price.
Leftover Turkey Thanksgiving Soup – Leftovers make the best meals! I love utilizing every aspect of food without wasting!
Bacon and Root Vegetable Soup – Enjoy the aromas of this nutrient-dense soup filled will all your favorite root vegetables and BACON!
- 1 cooked turkey carcass
- Place turkey carcass into a 6-quart or larger crockpot and immerse with enough water to cover completely.
- Cover and cook on low for 12 to 24 hours or until broth is aromatic and has reached a golden color.
- Allow the broth to cool for 1 hour before moving onto the next step.
- Carefully remove the bones and meat with a slotted spoon or tongs and discard.
- Secure a piece of cheesecloth over a large bowl with a rubber band or clothes pins and slowly pour the broth through the cheesecloth straining any large particles.
- Transfer bone broth into an airtight container(s) and store in the fridge for 2 weeks (or see tips below for more storing options).
Note: Each cube is roughly 1 ounce. 8 cubes = 1 cup.