A quick turkey fricassee recipe featuring turkey simmered in a silky, creamy white sauce. There’s hardly a better way of dealing with leftover turkey.
This quick leftover turkey fricassee is one of my favorite ways of using either leftover turkey or leftover chicken. Or meat leftover when making stock. It is fast, always delicious, and comforting, and I can be sure to make my husband very happy with it; it is one of his favorite meals.
Using leftover meat to make fricassee means that the dinner will be ready in at least half the time you need to make the dish from scratch. All you have to do is make the white sauce, cook the mushrooms and then reheat the turkey pieces in the sauce.
And if you are looking for more ideas for using leftover Thanksgiving turkey, you could try this Cream of Turkey Soup, Leftover Turkey Risotto, Leftover Turkey Lasagna, Vegetable Strudel with Leftover Turkey, and Leftover Turkey Pasta Recipe.
Table of contents
- I almost always make turkey fricassee with leftovers.
- When I make chicken fricassee, I might need to cook a chicken or a few chicken legs occasionally, but there are always leftovers when it comes to turkey.
- Either from cooking legs in the oven or the oven-roasted breast. Or from making bone broth with one bone, a giant wing, or maybe the neck of the bird.
- To use the cooked meat for the fricassee, I have to cut or tear it into smaller pieces and add those to the almost-finished dish.
- The ratio of meat and mushrooms is about 1:1.
- I prefer fresh mushrooms, which I fry lightly in a bit of butter before adding them to the dish.
- But canned mushrooms are fine as well. Drain well and add to the dish together with the meat. Using canned mushrooms also makes cooking faster as you will not have to cook them separately anymore.
- I like to enrich the sauce with a bit of heavy cream, not much, just enough to give the dish the final touch making it smooth, creamy, and delicious.
Stock: Use good quality chicken stock (or homemade turkey stock if you have it). The flavor of the stock is crucial for making a good fricassee.
White sauce: Butter, all-purpose flour, nutmeg, fine sea salt (or Kosher), and black pepper.
How to make turkey fricassee?
- Prepare ingredients: Cut or tear the leftover meat into bite-sized pieces (1). Halve or quarter the mushrooms, depending on their size.
- Sauce: Melt butter in a saucepan large enough to hold everything. Add flour and stir well for a couple of minutes until the flour turns slightly golden (2).
- Slowly add the stock while whisking all the time so there will be no clumps in the sauce (3).
- Cook the sauce uncovered until thickened, about 10-15 minutes.
- Cook the mushrooms while the sauce simmers. Fry them in 1 tablespoon of butter in a large pan for about 3-5 minutes or until golden (4).
- Add cream, nutmeg, salt, and pepper to taste when the sauce has thickened. Be generous with the spices (5).
- Combine: Add mushrooms and turkey to the sauce and stir well.
- Simmer for another few minutes until everything is hot. Adjust the seasoning, and sprinkle with chopped parsley (6).
Make fricassee from scratch
- Boil one large turkey leg or small thigh, a small chicken, chicken legs, or chicken breast. When the meat is tender, strain and keep the liquid for making the white sauce. Proceed with the recipe as described below.
- The only thing to remember when starting from scratch is that your cooking liquid will need more seasoning than when using stock to make the fricassee. The stock is usually cooked for much longer, so it develops more flavor than the liquid used to cook the meat quickly.
- Play with the spices here, and be generous. If the cooking liquid lacks flavor, you should consider adding one or two chicken stock cubes.
A traditional French method of cooking chicken. Nowadays, most of us think of chicken cooked in a rich, creamy white sauce when we talk about fricassee.
I often add peas, about a cup. Add them to the pot with the meat and let them get hot.
Refrigerate leftover turkey fricassee in an airtight container, lasting 2-3 days.
Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge.
Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop. Add a bit of extra stock to loosen the sauce, and stir gently and often while reheating.
How to serve?
- Serve the turkey fricassee with rice, mashed potatoes, or creamy polenta. Pasta is also an option, as are bread rolls or simple crusty bread.
- Make a fresh green salad on the side, or serve with steamed, boiled, or roasted vegetables like broccoli, carrots, peas, or cauliflower.
More turkey recipes
Turkey Fricassee (with Leftover Turkey)
- 10-14 oz cooked turkey 300-400 g, Note 1
- 4 tablespoons butter 60 g/ 2 oz
- ½ cup all-purpose flour 60 g/ 2 oz
- 3 ½ cups chicken stock 850 ml, Note 2
- 1 chicken stock cube optional, Note 3
- 10-14 oz mushrooms 300-400 g
- 1 tablespoon butter for the mushrooms
- ½ cup heavy cream 125 ml
- a few gratings of nutmeg
- fine sea salt and pepper
- fresh parsley
- Prepare ingredients: Cut or shred the leftover meat into bite-sized pieces. Halve or quarter the mushrooms, depending on their size. Set them aside in different bowls.
- Sauce: Melt 4 tablespoons (60 g) butter in a saucepan large enough to hold everything. Add flour and stir well for a couple of minutes until the flour turns slightly golden. Slowly start adding the stock while whisking continuously to avoid clumps.
- Simmer, uncovered, until thickened, about 10-15 minutes. Add cream, nutmeg, salt, and pepper to taste when the sauce has thickened. Be generous with the spices.
- Cook the mushrooms while the sauce simmers. Fry them in 1 tablespoon of butter in a large pan for about 3-5 minutes or until golden.
- Combine: Add mushrooms and turkey to the sauce and stir well.
- Simmer for another few minutes until everything is hot. Adjust the seasoning, and sprinkle with chopped parsley.
- I used dark meat, but white meat is also fine. Use as much as you have; between 10 and 16 oz (300-450 g) is fine.
- Homemade chicken or turkey stock would be great, but a good quality store-bought stock also makes a delicious sauce.
- Only if using poaching liquid and not stock to make the sauce.
Laura Dembowski says
This looks so comforting! Also such a great way to use up leftovers.
Valentina | The Baking Fairy says
This looks absolutely delicious, Adina! I have never had fricassee but it looks so yummy and simple, too. Love the addition of mushrooms - I could add mushrooms to anything! Saving this to try!
Looks delicious - I can see why you and your husband love it so much. And I think I would prefer it with rice, too. I'm planning to try making smothered chicken with rice soon and this makes me think of that. This is great comfort food.
Mushroom! I love mushrooms. Just by looking at those pictures makes me so hungry. Haha. And mixing this dish with rice a double win. It is a good way to finish leftovers from the fridge. Hee.
Denise Browning says
A great way to put those turkey leftovers from the holidays to use. I love it!
David Sims says
Simple and delicious, thank you. And as you say, a perfect comfort food.
Thank you, David. Happy New Year!