How to Make the Best Turkey Stock from Thanksgiving Leftovers

Happy Thanksgiving!! Before I get to the turkey stock goodness, I want to tell a short story. In life, there are so many skills learned and passed down from generation to generation. How many of you have some kitchen tool or trick that you were taught first-hand by a family member? There’s a story I grew up hearing about how a family would cut the top off their turkey before roasting it in the oven. Eventually one of the children asked why this was done. This prompted a search for the answer and it was discovered that the origin

al reason was due to the size of the ovens a few generations back—the entire turkey didn’t fit, so grandma had to slice off the top.

While I find this story amusing, it rings true in that cooking during the holidays is usually one of the things we learn from our families. Every year following the enjoyment of our Thanksgiving turkey my mother would take the stuffing, bones, and drippings, and would place them all in a large stockpot to simmer and cook. This then created the most delicious and nutritious turkey bone broth. Making your own turkey stock is simple ans delicious and it is a really good way to not let anything go to waste. It’s also a nice addition to any family food storage. When properly stored, turkey stock can maintain its freshness and quality for about 4 to 6 months and be kept for up to a year.

Freshly roasted Thanksgiving turkey and stock pot

Making The Best Turkey Stock

First of all, just enjoy your turkey. Hopefully it’s moist and tender like ours always is! Since I can’t be in your kitchen with you to teach you what my mother taught me, I’m going to share a three easy steps on how to make the BEST POST-THANKSGIVING TURKEY STOCK.

Pull off all the meat as soon as dinner is over

I know you’ll want to go and take a nap right after eating all that turkey but you’re going to want to pull all the meat off those bones first. When a turkey cools down too much it gets harder to pull apart. You can rest while the bones simmer!

Juicy Thanksgiving turkey, white meat and bones

Throw it All in a Pot with Some Water and Simmer

Once your bones are all picked clean, throw them in a big stock pot. Add in extra carrots, onions, celery, herbs and anything you might have stuffed into the cavity of your bird as it was roasting. Simmer this together for about 2-3 hours.

Big stock pot with turkey carcass, ,veggies and water to make Thanksgiving turkey stock and bone broth

Cool, Strain and Store

Let your turkey stock cool down. Strain liquid into a container and discard carcass and vegetables. Store it away in 2-cup servings. You can pour it in quart freezer bags or freezer friendly containers. This is the perfect amount to keep handy especially for recipes calling for stock.

Before, you go make sure to see our post about Storage and Safety Tips for Thanksgiving Leftovers.

Thanksgiving turkey stock step by step guide. Broth and bones of fresh turkey in stock pot