What’s more warming than a bowlful of chicken noodle soup? How about an aromatic, flavorful, Thai-inspired noodle soup made with delicious leftover turkey from Thanksgiving? Mmm, mmm, I can hardly wait for Friday!
Inevitably, and often on purpose, there are mounds and mounds of leftovers. Are you one of those people, like me, that find the fun in repurposing? Day after, I can’t wait to use that soft, shredded turkey on something SIMPLE and decidedly NON-Thanksgiving-y. Last year I made no-fuss enchiladas, and the year before curried turkey salad with grapes and cashews.
This year? A brothy, healing, comforting bowl of noodle soup. In the back of my mind, I had wanted to post a recipe for chicken noodle soup this fall/winter season, so when contemplating what I would do with OUR leftover turkey this year, this became a no-brainer.
(An aside: Turkey and chicken are interchangeable in this recipe, so if you want to make this any other time of year, you can for sure swap out the turkey for chicken).
Me being me, you know I’ve got to zest it up! So this is not your typical noodle soup… it’s a totally exciting and vibrant noodle soup! Full of aromatic spices and creamy coconut milk. Exotic as it may be, it’s still very homey and evokes a feeling of health and comfort that we all expect from a bowl of chicken noodle.
My husband has a passion for Asian cuisines, in particular Thai food. Whenever he is feeling under the weather, the one thing he wants is a super spicy bowl of Thai soup (like a Tom Yum, or Jungle Curry). There’s something magical in the heat and spices that helps to clear one’s head. It hit me that marrying a bit of that into a typical chicken noodle would make an AMAZING bowl of soup.
The heat here is optional! My kids will eat most anything, but we’re still working on spicy. I offer a few options for “heat level” below, including no spice.
Wishing you a happy and healthy Thanksgiving holiday! And lots of yummy leftovers. Be well.
Are There Any Tips or Tricks in Making this Soup?
- You can make your own stock from the leftover turkey bones. Simply put them in a big pot with a few carrot sticks, a halved onion and some celery, cover with water and bring to a simmer. Cook for 2-3 hours, then let cool and strain. Use this stock for my soup, or freeze it for up to a month and use it for future recipes. But if you don’t have the energy after all that cooking for the big day, using a store-bought stock is just fine!
- As I mentioned above, the chilis are optional. What I do is split a serrano chili in half, and drop half in my bowl of soup and the other half in my husband’s. It imparts a lovely, subtle heat, but if you want more feel free to chop it up and add it to the pot with the garlic during the cooking. Or for a super duper kick, chop it up with the cilantro and sprinkle it fresh over the finished bowl.
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Thai-Inspired Turkey Noodle Soup
- 2 tablespoons butter or ghee
- 1 small onion chopped finely
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 large garlic cloves grated or chopped finely
- 3 large carrots sliced on a diagonal
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric or use 2 teaspoons grated fresh
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 lime
- 5 cups low-sodium turkey or chicken broth or make your own turkey broth from leftover turkey bones
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
- 1 cup lite coconut milk shaken
- 2 cups shredded cooked turkey or use shredded rotisserie chicken
- 8 ounces egg noodles
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro for garnish
- 1-2 Serrano chilis Optional
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook with 1 teaspoon of the salt for 5-8 minutes until softened. Add the garlic, carrots, turmeric, and cardamom and cook for another minute. Pour in the broth, ginger, and coconut milk and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, use a vegetable peeler to peel 3-4 big strips of zest from the lime and drop them in the broth.
- Let the soup simmer for about 10-15 minutes until the carrots are softened. Cook the noodles in a separate pot of water until almost cooked through. Drain, or scoop them with a slotted spoon and add them to the soup along with the shredded turkey. Taste the soup for seasoning, depending on how seasoned your stock is, you could need quite a bit more salt.
- To serve, ladle the soup into bowls, and top with cilantro. Serve with lime wedges.
Tips & Tricks
- If using the chilis, either chop them and add them in step 1 with the garlic and spices, or chop them with the cilantro and sprinkle on top of the finished soup for more of a kick.
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