Turkey casserole with earthy mushrooms will transform turkey leftovers into a totally new meal rich in mesmerizing flavors while insanely creamy and tender.
Roast turkey meat such as Baked Turkey in the Oven or the Roasted Turkey Legs is one of the most common roast meats prepared at festive dinner tables. A rich course that can be made in many variations, always satisfying different tastes and needs. But what to do when you have some turkey leftovers?
If you have some turkey leftover in the fridge, don’t miss the opportunity to cook a delightful turkey casserole with fresh ingredients. It is an easy recipe to make for whenever your fridge is full of leftovers from holidays such as Thanksgiving or Christmas. Nonetheless, it is a great recipe for an everyday dinner.
Ingredients for turkey casserole
As the title gives it all out, you will need some turkey leftovers as a first thing. Everything else in this recipe can be adjusted according to a person’s preferences.
I like to add mushrooms to the casserole as I adore the earthy notes it gives to the dish, also, I like how the mushrooms complement the taste of the meat. Use champignons or porcini mushrooms. My recommendation is to use fresh mushrooms over canned ones as the flavor is much more intense.
The consistency of the turkey casserole will be ensured by the pasta. I like to use fusilli or any other pasta type that can grip on or hold the sauce to create the needed shape of the casserole.
To bind all the ingredients together I make a creamy sauce out of eggs, cream cheese, and heavy cream. This combo is perfect to give the perfect balance of taste and texture.
Also, to make the casserole even more creamy, I add cheese like mozzarella or cheddar cheese.
Don’t skip the seasoning such as salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and granulated garlic. And finally, I like to add fresh herbs, chopped fresh dill is a breath of fresh air and it will add color as well.
Now that you know what it takes to cook a delicious turkey casserole, roll up your sleeves and let’s get down to business.
How to saute mushrooms
Sauteed mushrooms are a delicious autumn side dish perfect also alone as an appetizer. When added to the turkey casserole, it will give earthy notes to the dish which will elevate the taste and the texture. Choose any mushrooms of your choice, for this recipe I used the Champignon.
It is very easy to saute the mushrooms, but like any classic recipe, it is necessary to follow precise rules to get perfect results. First of all, use quality ingredients. Second, clean mushrooms thoroughly and use paper towels to absorb excess water. Third, short cooking. This is how to cook perfect sautéed mushrooms that are juicy, tasty, tender but at the same time intact and fleshy. Also, the perfectly sauteed mushrooms are neither flaked nor watery, but fragrant and tasty like those of the best restaurants!
In a non-stick pan, add 2 tablespoons of oil. Peel and lightly crush one or two cloves of garlic and if you like, add a dash of chili pepper. It will give a truly exquisite slightly spicy accent.
Let the garlic brown for less than 1 minute on high heat until golden brown and add the sliced mushrooms. Cook the mushrooms over medium-high heat without a lid. It is very important that the mushrooms are cooked without a lid. The lid tends to increase the steam and create water in the pan. You will notice that the mushrooms will decrease in volume. It’s normal. Cook over high heat for about 3 minutes and remember to mix occasionally.
The secret to perfect sautéed mushrooms is very short cooking. The mushrooms must be vivid and fleshy and not too wilted. Voila!
How to prepare the creamy base for the turkey casserole?
To make the turkey casserole hearty and creamy, you will need to make the creamy base. That is very simple and will only take a few minutes of your time.
Use a large bowl to mix the ingredients. First, crack 4-5 eggs into the bowl and use a fork or a whisk to homogenize them. Then add 1 cup of heavy cream and about 8 oz of cream cheese. Mix well and your creamy base is done.
Now cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Cook the pasta al dente for them to better soak in the creamy base while in the oven later. Once you’ve drained the pasta, add it to the creamy base and mix well. At this point sprinkle salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and granulated garlic to add character to the creamy combo. You are ready to get to the next step of the turkey casserole preparation.
How to make turkey casserole?
Since the meat is already cooked, just shred the turkey leftovers and proceed to assemble the appetizing turkey casserole. Rinse and chop the dill to add a bit of freshness and color to the dish. Add the turkey leftovers, the sauteed mushrooms, and the chopped dill to the creamy bowl with pasta and mix well.
To finalize the creation, grease a baking dish with some butter and sprinkle with breadcrumbs all over the inside borders. Pour in the mix of mushrooms, pasta, and turkey leftovers and use a spoon to lightly press the mass. To make a beautiful and crispy top, add slices of cheese all over the casserole. You may also shred the cheese and spread it evenly to cover the interior of the baking dish. For more crispiness, I like to sprinkle with bread crumbs on top. It will bake and give it a nice golden look. Now the casserole is ready to be baked!
How to bake turkey casserole?
Bake the turkey casserole in a preheated oven at 360 degrees for 30 minutes or a little less. Make sure the oven is well preheated to get the needed results in a timely manner. Remember that almost all the ingredients are already cooked, you basically need to allow time for the creamy base to be cooked well and to bind the ingredients.
Whenever the top of the casserole is beautifully brown, the dish is ready!
How to serve the turkey casserole?
Take the casserole out of the oven and let it rest for about 10-15 minutes. In the meantime, you may prepare a refreshing salad such as the Succulent Country Style Tomato Salad. Then slice the turkey casserole and serve with the greatest pleasure. You can serve the casserole the next day as well, remember to cover with cling film and deposit it in the fridge overnight. Also, you may reheat it in the preheated oven or in a microwave. Enjoy the most delicious turkey casserole!
Turkey Casserole with Turkey Leftovers
- baking dish
- 8 oz turkey leftovers
- 8 oz mushrooms
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 4 eggs whole
- 3-4 oz mozzarella cheese
- 8 oz pasta dry
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 handful dill chopped
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 cup breadcrumbs
- Wash, slice, and saute the mushrooms for about 3 minutes on high heat without a lid
- Cook the pasta al dente according to the package instructions in salted water. Drain the pasta
- In a bowl whisk the eggs and mix with the heavy cream, cream cheese, and the spices
- Combine all ingredients in the bowl with the creamy sauce: the boiled pasta, the sauteed mushrooms, the shredded turkey leftover meat, and the chopped dill
- Mix well and set aside
- Preheat the oven at 360 degrees for 5 minutes
- In the meantime grease a baking dish with butter, and cover the sides with breadcrumbs
- Pour in the creamy mixture and even the surface
- Top with mozzarella cheese and breadcrumbs
- Bake for 30 minutes or until crispy and golden on top
- Take out of the oven and let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving
- Slice, use a spatula to take out the desired portion and serve with pleasure