Cooking for a family, while making family time

Leftover Turkey Bolognese

Leftover Turkey Bolognese

Without a doubt my FAVORITE way to use leftover turkey. Nothing about this dish screams Thanksgiving, it’s a twist on an Italian classic that I actually like more than the traditional beef bolognese. Under 10 ingredients and done in 30 minutes. Perfect for a quick meal after all that Thanksgiving cooking.

For those of you not familiar with bolognese sauce it’s just a really thick red sauce, jam packed with veggies and a whole lot of flavor. You sauté chopped onion, garlic, carrots, and celery in olive oil until tender, then you add a jar of your favorite marinara sauce and 1-1 1/2 cups chopped leftover turkey. Then you let that simmer while you make the pasta of your choice. Once done, pour sauce over pasta and top with parmesan cheese. It’s delicious and everybody always requests seconds in our house when I make this leftover dinner.



1 jar of your favorite marinara sauce
1 cup chopped up leftover turkey meat
1 onion diced
1 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 garlic cloves, diced small
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chicken broth

Cooked pasta of choice
Fresh parmesan cheese
Fresh basil and parsley


In a large soup pot heat your olive oil over medium heat, next add in your carrots, onion and celery. Let this sauté 5 minutes or until the veggies have mostly softened. Next add in your garlic cloves and sauté for a minute longer. Now pour in your jar of marinara sauce, chopped up leftover turkey and chicken broth. Give everything a good stir and put a lid on your soup pot. Reduce your heat to low and simmer your bolognese sauce for 20 minutes (longer if you have the time.) While your sauce comes together, cook any pasta shape you like until al dente and set aside. Once your sauce is done, ladle over your cooked pasta, top with cheese and fresh herbs and enjoy.

This sauce is one that the longer you can let it cook on low the more delicious it will become. Side note, when cooking this your entire house will smell delicious! I love this spin on traditional bolognese, its just as yummy and even less work by having your protein already cooked. My tip for this one is to salt carefully, jarred marinara can be high in sodium, also given how your turkey was cooked Thanksgiving day that too may alter your flavoring a bit. This being jam packed with veggies makes me feel better about dinner and the kids don’t even mind them because the sauce itself is too tasty to mind.

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