Turkey Soup

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Yield: about

    14 cups


Appears in

Craig Claiborne's Southern Cooking

Craig Claiborne's Southern Cooking

By Craig Claiborne

Published 1987

  • About


  • 1 turkey carcass
  • 1 cup cubed turkey meat for garnish, optional
  • 16 cups water
  • Leftover giblet gravy, if any, optional
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped onion
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt to taste, if desired
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 4 sprigs fresh parsley
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme, or ½ teaspoon dried
  • 3 whole carrots, trimmed and scraped
  • 3 whole celery ribs, trimmed and scraped
  • ½ cup broken vermicelli, cappelini, or spaghettini


  1. Pick over the carcass and reserve any tender morsels of meat. Use this for the cup of meat indicated, adding more meat as necessary.
  2. Place the carcass in a kettle and set the meat aside. Add to the kettle any jellied gravy that may have accumulated on the turkey platter.
  3. Add the water to the kettle. Add the leftover giblet gravy, onion, bay leaf, salt, pepper, cloves, parsley, thyme, carrots, and celery. Bring to the boil and simmer 1 hour, skimming the surface as necessary.
  4. Strain the soup through a sieve lined with a clean kitchen towel or a double thickness of cheesecloth. Discard all the solids except the carrots and celery.
  5. Pour about 2 cups of the soup into a saucepan and add the vermicelli. Cook until just tender.
  6. Add this to the soup. Cut the carrots and celery into ½-inch cubes and add them to the soup. Add the cubed turkey meat and bring to the boil. Serve piping hot.