Turkey Frame Soup

Black Friday!    A day when millions of people hit the stores to start their Holiday shopping, and what am I doing?   Making soup.  It’s my ritual.  The evening before, after everyone has eaten their fill, I put  the leftover food, and what’s left of  Mr. Turkey into the fridge because I don’t want to do anything else that’s food related.

Friday morning after a leisurely start with my coffee,  I remove all the remaining large pieces of meat from the turkey frame, break the frame apart and put it all into a large soup kettle with a few vegetables to season it and start making the stock for the soup.

The beginning of a delicious turkey soup.

A long slow simmer turns all that goodness into a tasty broth, the basis for the soup.  I really miss the soup when we have TG dinner elsewhere and I don’t have a turkey frame to work with.  Once the stock is made, you can freeze or refrigerate it until you are ready to make the soup.  The recipe that follows is one I developed quite a few years ago, and I make it pretty much the same way every time, but you can improvise in your choice of vegetables and the type of pasta or noodles you add.  I am liberal with my use of seasonings, and this is a full, hearty and very satisfying soup.


YIELD:   about 10 servings


  • 1 meaty turkey frame.  Leave generous amounts of meat attached to the bones.  This is what goes into the soup.

    A meaty turkey frame, ready to make stock.

  • 3 quarts of water (12 cups)
  • 1 or 2 onions quartered, no need to peel
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 large rib celery, cut into chunks
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • several sprigs parsley

1.  Break turkey frame apart or cut with kitchen shears; place in a large soup kettle with the water, onion, vegetables, salt and parsley.  Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 1/2 – 2 hours.

2.  Remove the frame; when cool enough to handle, cut off meat and coarsely chop.  Discard bones.  Strain broth; discard solids.  Return broth to soup kettle to continue making the soup or package in freezer containers to freeze for later use.  I usually make the broth in the morning and after straining I refrigerate it to solidify the fat and then skim if off before continuing to make the soup.


  • 1  (14 1/2 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 Tablespoon instant chicken bouillon granules
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 cups assorted fresh vegetables:  any combination  of sliced celery, chopped onion, sliced carrots, sliced mushrooms, green peas, or cut green beans)
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked noodles ie, medium egg noodles, small shell pasta, or elbows.

Rich turkey stock, the basis for a good soup.

1.  Return the broth to the large soup kettle and heat over medium heat.  Stir in undrained tomatoes, bouillon granules, oregano, thyme, and pepper.  Stir in fresh vegetables.

2.  Bring to boiling;  reduce heat, cover and simmer for 45 minutes.  Stir in uncooked noodles and cut up turkey.  Simmer uncovered, 8 – 10 minutes till noodles are done.  Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper as needed.

Turkey Frame Soup, thick and hearty.

SOURCE:   A Carolyn Original