This recipe for Leftover Turkey with Linguine Casserole (aka Turkey Tetrazzini) turns turkey leftovers into something everyone will love. It's arguably better than the original because of the flavorful cream sauce with plenty of Parmesan cheese.
This creamy turkey pasta bake will soon become a family favorite. So much so that you'll look for reasons (other than the holidays) to roast a turkey just for the leftovers, and this Brown Bag Roast Turkey is just the recipe you should use.
The ingredient list:
*Please note that the exact measurements along with a new "shop the recipe" feature from Instacart is available in the printable recipe card.
I purchased cremini mushrooms for this recipe while they were on sale, but I knew I wouldn't be using them immediately.
Since I didn't want them to spoil before I had a chance to use them, I sautéed the mushrooms first and then stored them in the freezer. It's a smart way to take advantage of sale prices and extend the life and flavor of fresh mushrooms. Try it sometime!
The broth I used for this recipe is homemade turkey stock I'd made after making the Brown Bag Roast Turkey recipe. It's flavorful and delicious, but if you use store-bought chicken broth or stock, they will work well too. No worries.
I like to use the best Parmesan cheese I can afford for the most cheese flavor but without having to use excessive amounts. For that reason, I prefer using Parmigiano-Reggiano.
A little of this excellent cheese goes a long way, and it can also be kept in the freezer and then grated fresh for the best flavor you won't get from any other Parmesan cheese.
The easy instructions:
Sauté chopped onion in olive oil over medium/high heat.
Add the chopped celery to the skillet.
And three cups of leftover turkey, cut into bite-sized pieces.
Stir in the mushrooms (cooked or raw), and 2 cloves of minced garlic.
Season with salt, pepper, and the poultry seasoning. Stir well to combine.
Remove the turkey and mushroom to a bowl and keep warm.
In the same skillet make a roux by melting 3 tablespoons butter and adding 3 tablespoons all-propose flour.
Stir well and cook for one minute to remove the raw flour flavor.
Add two cups of warm chicken or turkey stock to the skillet along with the roux
And continue stirring until the sauce thickens.
Add one cup of heavy cream to the skillet
along with the cooked and drained linguine noodles.
Stir well, and add the Parmesan cheese.
Time to add the turkey and mushroom mixture back into the skillet and stir well to combine thoroughly.
Add fresh parsley if desired.
Spoon the turkey and noodles evenly into a prepared (sprayed with cooking spray) 3 quart casserole dish and top with additional Parmesan cheese. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.
Sprinkle the completed dish with chopped fresh parsley if desired and serve hot.
Don't have leftover turkey? No problem.
Leftover chicken or ham will work great as well as using rotisserie chicken, cooked and crumbled ground beef, or even canned tuna I think would be delicious!
No linguine in the pantry? That's ok, too. How about spaghetti, mostaccioli, or even elbow macaroni? Any pasta will work here as long as it's cooked and drained before adding it to the skillet.
Not a fan of mushrooms? Leave them out. I'll never tell a soul!
Additional add-in suggestions
- cooked bacon
- cooked pancetta
- spinach (cooked or raw)
- frozen peas
- French fried onions
- cooked green beans
- what would YOU add?
Can this leftover turkey casserole be made in advance
Make the casserole up to the point when it bakes in the oven, but instead let it cool on the counter. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and allow the unbaked casserole to sit in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
To bake after refrigeration, allow the casserole to sit at room temperature for 45 minutes to an hour and then bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Top with fresh Parmesan cheese and parsley before serving.
How many people will this casserole serve
It depends on how hearty your appetite is, but I wrote the recipe with the idea of comfortably serving eight people with moderate appetites.
This turkey linguine casserole will freeze beautifully after baking if you have a lot of leftovers for another day. Cool the leftovers entirely and store them in an airtight freezer container. Date the container and freeze for up to 4 months.
Thaw completely in the refrigerator overnight. Reheat in the microwave or a 350-degree oven, covered, until hot.
What is a roux
A roux is a thickening agent of equal parts fat to flour. In the case of this recipe, the fat is in the form of butter. I always use salted butter.
Once the three tablespoons of butter have melted in the skillet, stir in the three tablespoons of flour and cook, stirring for at least one minute.
The roux will be paste-like in consistency and light tan in color. The longer a roux cooks, the less thickening power it has, so cooking it for 1-2 minutes is ideal for removing the raw flour flavor but still thickens a sauce nicely.
Top tips for success
When preparing the pasta for this recipe, save a little of the pasta cooking water (½ cup or so) to loosen the sauce a little, if needed, before adding it to the casserole dish.
Since the casserole will finish baking in the oven, cut the cooking time down a few minutes on the pasta from what the package directions say. Cutting back on the cooking time will ensure the pasta is cooked properly.
Make it a meal
These are a few of my top suggestions for what to serve alongside this delicious turkey noodle casserole.
This Fall Chopped Salad has all the colors and flavors you love about the season! With roasted vegetables and fresh fall fruit, it will easily grace any table, for any occasion.
These Sautéed Autumn Vegetables make a perfect side dish for your Thanksgiving or fall festival table.
If you're looking for homemade bread with a lot of body, and a touch of sweetness, then this Oatmeal Honey Bread with Sunflower Seeds is just the ticket!
When you make this recipe, and I hope you do, I'd appreciate it if you'd take a moment to leave a star rating on the recipe card and briefly comment on why you rated it as you did. FYI - Google appreciates recipe ratings and, in turn, will share my recipes with more people. Thank you so much!!
Printable Recipe Card
Leftover Turkey with Linguine Casserole
- colander optional
- 1 box (16 ounces) linguine Cooked just shy of the directions on the box, and drained. Reserve ½ cup of the cooking water. Set aside.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion
- ¾ cup chopped celery
- 1½ cup sliced cremini mushrooms
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 cups leftover turkey chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups turkey or chicken stock warmed
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley divided
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In a large skillet over medium/high heat, sauté the onions and celery in the olive oil for 4-5 minutes until the onions are translucent.
- Add the leftover turkey into the skillet along with the mushrooms (cooked or raw), garlic, poultry seasoning, salt and pepper. Stir well. Cook 2-3 minutes and then remove to a bowl and keep warm.
- Melt the butter in the same skillet, and add the flour. Stir well to make a roux and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Whisk in the warmed chicken or turkey stock and continue cooking and stirring until the sauce thickens (about 5 minutes).
- Add the heavy cream, cooked pasta, and the turkey mixture back into the skillet.
- Stir in ¾ cup Parmesan cheese and most of the chopped parsley (reserving 2 tablespoons for topping). Stir well to combine. Thin the sauce with reserved pasta cooking liquid, if desired.
- Spoon the turkey and pasta evenly into a 3 quart casserole dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Top with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
- Bake uncovered for 30 minutes. Before serving sprinkle with the reserved chopped parsley.
Thank you so much for visiting me today in my Kudos Kitchen. I hope you found something you'll love and that you'll come back and visit me often. There is always room for you around my table!
Should you have any questions or comments regarding anything you've seen here on my blog, please don't hesitate to reach out to me. It is always my distinct pleasure to respond to you just as soon as I possibly can.
Until we eat again, I hope you have a delicious day!!