Discover how simple it is to make turkey stock from your turkey’s bones! All you’ll need is a turkey carcass that has been picked over, as well as some vegetables and herbs that you presumably already have on hand from the turkey.

After a holiday feast, my mom and grandma would always make soup using the bones. When I was in my twenties, I remember my first big supper. I was at a friend’s house for a holiday feast, and they simply threw away the bones. I couldn’t believe it because we always save the bones from turkeys and chickens in our household for soup. This is in line with my family’s “waste not” philosophy. This is a method of ensuring that you get the most out of your meals.

What is turkey bone broth?

Turkey bone broth is a stock created by boiling turkey bones in water with vegetables and fine herbs such as dill and parsley. You can add cider vinegar to your broth if you don’t have a lot of time to make it. This speeds up the extraction of minerals and collagen from the bones.

Difference between broth and stock

There is only a slight difference between stock and broth. Just like with the broth, you are still going to simmer bones in water with veggies, and fine herbs. The difference between the two is really the amount of time that it is simmering for. With a broth, it will simmer for quite a while, and the stock has a small amount of acidity added to extract the minerals and collagen from the bones.

turkey stock bone broth
Bone broth

Can you overcook turkey stock?

Yes, excessive heat is to blame. It’s fine to cook for a long time (up to 4-5 hours) as long as it’s a steady simmer rather than a rapid boil. The flavors of all those beautiful herbs are dulled by high heat. it also ruins the smooth texture you’re striving for.  You’ll be fine if you keep your heat low and slow

Can you make turkey broth in the instant pot?

Yes, you can. I prefer to cook it on the stovetop or in a slow cooker. If you are going to do it in the instant pot, you can set it for 120 minutes at high pressure. My instant pot has a soup or stock setting, so I will choose that setting and adjust the time. Depending on the size of your instant pot, you may need to adjust the amount of water. I like to do it in a slow cooker only because I like the low and slow method, but an instant pot works great too.

Multi cooker close up on kitchen table
Multicooker close up on kitchen table

Ingredients to make turkey stock

  • Turkey Carcass- pick off as much of the meat as possible from the turkey carcass. I usually can get another 3 or 4 cups of meat.
  • Turkey neck- If you have it, if not, that’s ok
  • Giblets- if you have them, if not that ok too
  • Leftover turkey drippings- If you don’t have the drippings left, I will sometimes add leftover gravy because, let’s be honest, most of the drippings go into the delicious gravy.
  • Onion- I like to quarter my onions, but you can put them in whole.
  • 4 Garlic cloves- I like peeling the garlic and then smashing it with the side of a knife.
  • Large Carrots– I like to cut them into a few pieces.
  • Celery- cut the celery sticks into three pieces, and I like to throw in the celery leaves.
  • Parsley- Fresh is best, but dried works well too.
  • Sage- Fresh is best, but I usually use dried.
  • Rosemary– I like to use it fresh, but dried works well too.
  • Thyme
  • Bay Leaves
  • Whole Peppercorns

How to make turkey stock

This is one of my favorite things to do after a big holiday meal the next day. You can combine everything in a pot and leave it to simmer. You don’t even have to watch it, which is fantastic. You’ll want to create home stock after every holiday feast, just like my family does. When I’m making a holiday meal and I know turkey is on the menu, I like to prepare a little ahead of time. I’ll buy a few extra onions, carrots, and celery to ensure that I have everything I need to make fantastic soup or stock.

onions, carrots and celery for turkey stock
Onions, carrots, and celery
  • Add about 16 cups of water, covering most of the turkey, neck, giblets, and any skin.
  • Add roughly-chopped onion, carrots, garlic, and celery.
  • Add parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme.
  • Add bay leaves and peppercorns.
  • Simmer 2-4 hours
  • Pour the stock through a colander or strainer into a large bowl and separate out the fat.

How to use Turkey Stock

As a soup base turkey stock is fantastic. Cook the leftover turkey meat and carrots until they are tender, then remove them from the heat.

But soup is only the beginning of what you can do with your turkey stock.

  • Use it when you are making turkey gravy
  • Use it when making sauces from scratch.
  • Add it to soups and stews.
istockphoto 1180425942 170667a

Turkey Broth

Discover how simpleit is to make Turkey Stock from your turkey's bones! All you'll need is aturkey carcass that has been picked over, as well as some vegetables and herbsthat you presumably already have on hand from the turkey.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 5 minutes
Course lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American, asian, international
Servings 12 servings
Calories 60 kcal


  • 1 Large Pot
  • 1 slow cooker optional
  • 1 instant pot optional


  • 1 12-15 lb turkey carcass
  • 1 large onion
  • 4 garlic cloves smashed
  • 2 large carrots scrubbed, peeled, and quartered
  • 4 celery sticks quartered
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley dried parsley 1/2 tbsp
  • 3-4 springs fresh rosemary 1/8 tsp dried
  • 5 sprigs thyme 1/2 tsp dried
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 16 cups water


  • Place your turkey carcass into a stock pot that will hold 6 quarts, if your using the giblets, turkey neck dripping or gravy add them here as well.
  • Add the onion, carrots, and garlic. Chop off the ends of the celery with the leaves and add those to the pot.
  • Add a bunch of parsley, half a bunch of sage, 3-4 sprigs of rosemary, and about 5 sprigs of thyme. if your using dry add that instead
  • Add 3 bay leaves and 8-10 peppercorns
  • cover the turkey and vegetables with 4 quarts of water or as much water as you need to submerge your turkey
  • Bring to a rolling boil over high heat. After if has come to a rapid boil, turn the burner down to just below medium, or wherever you can maintain a low simmer the liquid should be gently moving at all time at all time.
  • Simmer for aboout 2 to 4 hours, look below if you are wanting to do this in a instant pot or slow cooker.
  • pour the stock into a collander to seperate any meat, veggies and bones
  • Allow stock to cool before moving to an airtight container and placing in the fridge or freezer.
  • Stock can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for about 3 months.

Slow cooker instructions

  • Add all the ingredients to a large crock pot. Cook on low for 10-12 hours. Pick up with the recipe in step 8, when you strain it through a colander.

Instant pot instructions

  • If you are going to do it in the instant pot, you can set it for 120 minutes at high pressure. My instant pot has a soup or stock setting and i set it and then adjust the time.
Keyword broth, soup, stew, stock, turkey

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