This Creamy Turkey Wild Rice Soup is full of comforting spices, cream cheese, leftover turkey, mushrooms, and more. Every bite is flavorful, rich, and bowl-licking good.
You're going to love this delicious and comforting turkey wild rice soup recipe. Using leftover turkey, this wild rice soup hits the spot and helps to clear some space in the fridge!
Making this soup can feel a bit time consuming, but that's mostly because it smells so fantastic you have to find small snacks to enjoy while waiting patiently.
The wait for this soup is worth it though, because in the end, you get the best fall soup of your life, and that's saying something. Especially when it's coming from me- a girl who loves soups!
Why This Recipe Works
- Great for using up leftovers. Using leftover turkey or even leftover shredded chicken is a great way to repurpose your leftovers. This means that by stretching the meat, you can also stretch your grocery budget.
- It's a fall favorite. Packed with rich and creamy textures and great seasonal flavors, this recipe is perfect for fall and winter.
- You can stretch the recipe even more. By adding in some more chicken broth or water, you can increase the serving sizes to make more portions.
Butter- This will add a depth of flavor and help to cook the veggies down in the initial steps.
Veggies- We'll use mushrooms, onion, celery, and carrots to make this tasty soup.
Seasonings- Garlic, lemon juice, Italian seasonings, salt, pepper, rosemary, and nutmeg all help to season this soup so that every bite is well-flavored. The nutmeg is a special secret ingredient I add to a lot of my creamy soups.
Chicken Broth and Water- This is the liquid base of the soup, but you can use 6 cups of chicken broth instead of broth+water.
Wild Rice- We need 2 of those 4.3oz boxes of Rice a Roni (not the seasoning packet, just the rice).
Cream Cheese- 4 ounces of SOFTENED cream cheese will add the thick and creamy thing we want. You'll notice the color of the soup change as soon as the cream cheese beings dissolving.
Milk- Thinning the soup just a tad while adding a little more richness in flavor.
Turkey- Grab some leftover turkey from your Thanksgiving bird and chop or shred it and set it to the side. You won't need it until you're close to the end of this recipe.
For the exact amounts needed, please see the recipe card below.
🍽 Equipment Needed
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Check out how to Make Creamy Leftover Turkey Wild Rice Soup with these simple step-by-step instructions:
Combine 2 tablespoons butter, mushrooms, and onions in a large pot over medium heat for 5 minutes until browned, stirring often.
Add in the carrot and celery and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Add in the garlic. Stir for 30 seconds until fragrant.
Stir in the Italian seasonings, salt, pepper, fresh rosemary, nutmeg, and lemon juice.
Make a well in the center of the pot by pushing everything to the sides. Add 2 tablespoons of butter and allow to melt. Add the flour to the center and then stir to combine.
Add in the chicken broth and water and whisk until the flour is dissolved.
Bring the mixture to a boil. Add in the rice from the Rice a Roni boxes. NOT THE SEASONING PACKETS!
Reduce the heat and let the soup simmer for 20 minutes, stirring every so often.
Add in the turkey and cream cheese and stir until the cream cheese has been fully incorporated.
Turn the heat off and slowly stir in the milk.
Serve and enjoy.
🍴 Recipe Tips
While you don't "have" to use leftover turkey to make this recipe, I just so happened to have some on hand after we ate our dry brined roasted turkey.
For making this leftover turkey soup, you could use the thick-cut deli turkey or even chicken if a giant roasted turkey isn't in your future anytime soon. Either way- this is a turkey rice soup recipe that craves the meaty chunks throughout.
When you go to add the cream cheese to the soup, make sure that it's already pretty softened. Just leaving it at room temperature while you're prepping and getting up to that point is sufficient.
Using colder cream cheese is doable but may result in floating white bits of undissolved cream cheese that are hard to explain unless you see them. They look a little unappetizing, but the soup still tastes good.
Absolutely! You can use heavy cream, half and half, dairy free milk (like almond or soy), or even evaporated milk depending on what you have on hand. It's really just being added to help thin the soup just a tad as the creaminess mostly comes from the cream cheese.
If you plan on freezing this turkey rice soup and reheating it later then I recommend not adding the dairy (cream cheese or milk) until after it's thawed and is ready to be eaten for real. This will help to keep it at its best and prevent the dairy from separating during the reheating process.
I'd recommend keeping any leftover soup in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 or 5 days. This soup tastes great when freshly made and again the next day, but the longer the rice sits in the broth, the thicker or starchier the soup may become. Reheat again before eating.
More great Fall theme recipes worth checking out
- Apple Cider Donut Muffins
- Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer
- Mashed Sweet Potato Muffins
- Apple Cider Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting
Creamy Leftover Turkey Wild Rice Soup
- 4 Tablespoons Butter, divided ($0.36)
- 8 ounces Mushrooms, chopped ($1.98)
- 2 large Carrots, diced ($0.28)
- 2 stalks Celery, chopped ($0.24)
- 1 medium Onion, diced ($0.70)
- 3 cloves Garlic, minced ($0.15)
- 2 teaspoon Lemon juice ($0.16)
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasonings ($0.10)
- 1 teaspoon Salt ($0.10)
- ½ teaspoon Black pepper ($0.05)
- 1 teaspoon Fresh rosemary, chopped ($0.10)
- ¼ teaspoon Ground nutmeg ($0.02)
- ¼ cup All purpose flour ($0.04)
- 32 ounces Chicken broth ($1.22)
- 3 cups Water ($0.00)
- 2 boxes (4.3oz) Wild Rice Rice-a-Roni boxes, (just rice, not seasoning packets!) ($2.00)
- 4 ounces Cream cheese, softened ($0.99)
- 2 cups Leftover cooked turkey, shredded or chopped ($3.01)
- 1 cup Milk ($0.19)
- In a large pot over medium heat, combine 2 tablespoon butter, mushrooms, and onions. Cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring often, until soft and browned.
- Add in the carrot and celery. cook another 3-5 minutes.
- Add in the garlic, stir 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add in lemon juice, Italian seasonings, salt, pepper, fresh rosemary, and nutmeg. Stir to combine.
- Make a well in the center of the pot, add 2 tablespoon butter and melt. Add flour and stir until everything is well coated.
- Add in the chicken broth and water. Whisk until combined and flour looks dissolved.
- Bring to a boil. Add rice from boxes. We don't need the seasonings packets! Reduce heat and simmer 15-20 minutes. Stir every so often to mix it around.
- Add in turkey and cream cheese and stir until the cream cheese has been fully incorporated.
- Turn off heat. Slowly add in the milk, stir to combine.
- Serve and enjoy.
- To omit the Rice-a-Roni and use a regular wild rice blend you'll want 1 cup of rice per box, so 2 cups of dry rice.
- This soup recipe can easily be doubled for more servings. Leftover turkey meat can be replaced with shredded cooked chicken instead.
- When you go to add the cream cheese to the soup, make sure that it's already pretty softened. Just leaving it at room temperature while you're prepping and getting up to that point is sufficient. Using colder cream cheese is do-able but may result in floating white bits of undissolved cream cheese.
- You can use heavy cream, half and half, dairy free milk (like almond or soy), or even evaporated milk depending on what you have on hand. It's really just being added to help thin the soup just a tad as the creaminess mostly comes from the cream cheese.
- This soup keeps well for about 3-4 days in the fridge in an airtight container. Reheat again before serving.
- If you plan on freezing this turkey rice soup and reheating it later then I recommend not adding the dairy (cream cheese or milk) until after it's thawed and is ready to be eaten for real. This will help to keep it at its best and prevent the dairy from separating during the reheating process.