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How to Make Turkey Stock

  • Serves: 12
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 6 hrs
  • Calories: 10
Homemade turkey stock in a jar

Simple, flavorful ingredients and a basic method—you pretty much just need to know how to boil water—make this the best turkey stock recipe, ever.

A Super Simple Homemade Turkey Stock

If you can boil water, you can make this easy homemade turkey stock recipe. Truly! Take that leftover turkey carcass, top it with water. Add a few things to make the stock taste really terrific, and that’s about it. You know all of those fancy recipes that are like, “just use your homemade stock”? Well now you can read them and think to yourself “don’t mind if I do!” instead of “who do you think I even am??”. The big secret is that stock is easy and with Thanksgiving around the corner, you know you’re about to have a big old turkey carcass leftover, so grab just a few extra things from the store when you do your Thanksgiving shopping, and you’ll be ready to spend the day after Thanksgiving making stock!

cooked turkey pieces, carrot, celery, onion, parsley, salt and pepper for homemade turkey stock

Everything You’ll Need for Making Turkey Stock

You won’t need anything unusual to make stock. For the most part, these are ingredients that you’ll be loading up on for Thanksgiving dinner, so just grab a few extras—extra carrots, extra onions and so on—when you do the big shop, and you’ll be good to go. Here’s everything you’ll need for your turkey stock:

  • Leftover turkey carcass (from a cooked turkey)

  • Celery stalks

  • Carrots

  • Onion

  • Garlic

  • Bay leaves

  • Whole peppercorns

  • Fresh thyme

  • Fresh parsley

ingredients for homemade turkey stock in a pot
homemade turkey stock in a pot

How To Make Stock From a Turkey Carcass

We’re not kidding and we’re only slightly exaggerating when we say that making stock is as easy as boiling water. It takes some time, but we’ve included recipes for making this turkey stock in a slow-cooker, so you can ‘set it and forget it’ and get about your business if you don’t want to be stuck at home for six hours. However, we love an excuse to stick close to the kitchen and have a lazy day, so we’re partial to the stove-top method. Either way, here’s how easy it is to make turkey stock:

  1. Dump everything into a stock pot. Yep, stuff that turkey carcass—bones and whatever meat is left on them—into the biggest stock pot you’ve got.

  2. Top it all off with cold water until the water covers the carcass almost completely.

  3. Bring the pot to a rapid boil and simmer the turkey stock for 6 hours. Yes, that’s right, exactly long enough to watch three holiday movies of your choice. Or two movies and get some shopping done.

  4. Strain the turkey stock. Turn off the heat and set a fine-mesh sieve large bowl. Take the big pieces of bone and vegetables out of the pot with tongs and then pour the rest through the strainer.

  5. And you’re done! You made homemade turkey stock!

strained ingredients for turkey stock recipe

What Can Turkey Stock Be Used For?

You can use roasted turkey stock in most any recipe that calls for chicken stock. Cooked with the same aromatics, it’s a simple one-to-one swap that’ll work beautifully. Here are a few of our favorite recipes to make when we’ve got homemade stock in the fridge or freezer:

Tools You’ll Need:

homemade turkey stock in jars
homemade turkey stock in jars

How To Freeze Turkey Stock

Invest in some really great freezer-safe containers and they’ll earn their keep many times over. Especially when it comes to making stock, you’re bound to end up with more than you can use right away. That’s where freezing comes in! Cool the stock completely and then pour it carefully into the freezer-safe containers.

Homemade turkey stock in a jar

Hey Look at You, Making Stock From Scratch!

You make stock now, you fancy home cook, you! It’s not hard at all, right? And now your house smells so cozy and dinner-like. We hope you’re feeling real proud of yourself. Share your success with us! Share a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper so that we can see your stuff! Happy eating!

How to Make Turkey Stock

  • Serves: 12
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 6 hrs
  • Calories: 10

Ingredients

  • 1 Leftover turkey carcass (about 4-5 lbs)
  • 2 Celery stalks, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 2 Large carrots, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 Yellow onion, cut in half
  • 1 Head garlic, cut in half
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt (optional)
  • 20 Whole peppercorns
  • 2 Sprigs fresh thyme
  • ½ Bunch fresh parsley

Method

  1. In a large stock pot add all ingredients. Fill with cold water, just until the carcass is almost completely covered. Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce to the heat to low. Simmer, undisturbed for 6 hours. Remove from heat and cool completely.
  2. Set a fine-mesh sieve/strainer over a large bowl. Using tongs, discard the large turkey pieces and vegetables from the stock. Once only the small bits remain, pour the stock through the sieve and into the bowl.
  3. To freeze, divide the stock between several (preferably 1-cup) freezer-safe containers. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week or in the freezer for up to 3 months. *Makes 8-12 cups total depending on the size of your pot.

To make in slow-cooker:

  1. Turn the crockpot on and set it to high heat. Add all ingredients. Bring 8-12 cups of water to a boil over high heat. If your crock pot can only hold 6-8 cups of boiling water, then that’s fine too. Pour the boiling water over the ingredients. Switch to low heat and cook for 12 or up to 24 hours.
  2. Set a fine-mesh sieve/strainer over a large bowl. Using tongs, discard the large turkey pieces and vegetables from the stock. Once only the small bits remain, pour the stock through the sieve and into the bowl.
  3. To freeze, divide the stock between several (preferably 1-cup) freezer-safe containers. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week or in the freezer for up to 3 months. *Makes 8-12 cups total depending on the size of your pot.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories 10
  • Protein 2 g
  • Carbohydrates 0 g
  • Total Fat 0 g
  • Dietary Fiber 0 g
  • Cholesterol 0 mg
  • sodium 764 mg
  • Total Sugars 0 g

How to Make Turkey Stock

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