Creamy Turkey Casserole

Catalina Castravet
By Catalina Castravet
Published:
5 from 9 reviews

Creamy Turkey Casserole is the most delicious way to use your leftover roast! Tender turkey meat and veggies are baked in a cheesy and buttery sauce. Then it’s topped with crunchy bacon and even more cheddar. 

Turkey is one of my favorite meats because it’s protein-rich but so light and lower in calories than other options. So versatile too! Try it in a grilled cheese with crescent dough, as a meatloaf with pepper jack cheese, or stuffed into cheesy sliders.

creamy turkey casserole

Turkey Casserole Recipe

Creamy Turkey Casserole is like mac and cheese, but with a Thanksgiving twist. I love using up leftover roast meat for this recipe. The meat is already so flavorful and ready to shred, so why make dry turkey sandwiches when I can bake this gooey, cheesy, and meaty dish instead? And the fact that we usually enjoy this around Thanksgiving makes it even more special.

Just like turkey itself, this recipe is incredibly versatile. Got veggies or meat in the fridge you need to use up? Bake it into the dish! Want a grown-up version with blue cheese or spiced up? Go for it. One thing’s for sure: this dish will make you excited for leftovers during the holidays!

This recipe is an adaption of a reader’s favorite and one of the most popular recipes on the blog, the Crack Chicken Casserole. It’s basically a combination of the most delicious cheese sauce, tender meat, Ranch, bacon, and pasta.

steps how to make turkey casserole

How to make the best Creamy Turkey Casserole?

The recipe may look complicated, but it’s actually very beginner-friendly:

  1. Crisp up the bacon. You can do this on a skillet, but if you don’t like being splattered with hot grease or making a mess, bake bacon instead. Reserve a bit of bacon fat for the next step.
  2. Cook the veggies. Stir-fry your aromatics and bell peppers for a few minutes in bacon drippings. Set aside.
  3. Make the cheese sauce. In the same pan, create a roux by whisking flour in hot butter until it forms a paste. Slowly trickle the milk, and don’t stop whisking to remove lumps. Whisk in the Ranch. Stir in the cream cheese and soup. Finish by whisking in the cheddar until smooth, and remove from fire. 
  4. Bake. Combine the meat, macaroni, veggies, cheese sauce, and seasonings. Transfer to a baking dish. Top with more cheese crumbled bacon, and panko. This goes into the oven for around 30 minutes, or until the cheese is golden, gooey, and bubbly.
  5. Serve. Slice into servings or serve family-style, and enjoy.

steps how to make turkey casserole

Turkey Casserole recipe variations and substitutions:

  • Swap the meat: aside from leftover roast, you can also use leftover chicken (shred it) or leftover ham (diced into chunks or sliced into strips). No leftovers? This recipe will also work with ground meats like turkey and ground chicken or beef.
  • Use cream of mushroom: Condensed cream of mushroom soup is a delicious alternative. For more veggie flavor, try this with condensed asparagus soup.
  • Use different pasta shapes: Try baking this with other kinds of pasta like penne, rotini, and fusilli because their shapes trap that creamy sauce. But you can also use fettuccine and spaghetti if you wish.
  • Sub with other cheeses: For a more complex flavor, try other cheeses like smoked cheddar, a bit of blue cheese, freshly-shaved parmesan, or fresh mozzarella.
  • Make it spicy: Want a hotter version? Toss in a handful of chopped jalapenos. 
  • Load it up with veggies. For a healthier dish, add more vegetables like carrots, florets of broccoli, bite-sized chunks of cauliflower, frozen peas, and white or brown mushrooms.

turkey casserole with cheese and bacon

How long to cook Turkey Casserole?

Not a long time, since the individual components are cooked already. It also depends on how hot your oven runs, but anywhere from 20 mins to 30 mins is fine.

What to serve with it?

Make it a Thanksgiving feast round two by serving this with Loaded Sweet Potato Casserole and the Best Honey Butter Ham! A light Pear Salad or Classic Caesar would be perfect as well. Don’t forget the fluffy dinner rolls on the side!

cheesy turkey casserole

How to store Creamy Turkey Casserole?

For any leftovers, make sure it’s completely cool. Otherwise, the condensation can make the cheese sauce watery. 

Wrap the dish as tight as you can with plastic wrap. Or, you can also transfer it in tightly-sealed containers.

If you keep it in the fridge, it’s best to consume it within three days. Frozen leftovers will stay good up to a month. To reheat, thaw and microwave ‘til hot and the cheese is re-melted. 

More Thanksgiving Casserole recipes:

turkey casserole on a plate

Recipe tips:

  • Want beautiful, clean slices? Cool for around 15 mins before cutting. 
  • If it’s browning far too quickly for your liking, cover with foil while baking.
  • Make sure the sauce is actually saucy, so if it’s too thick, add more milk, you want it to have a pourable consistency. Sometimes different brands of cheese melt differently, that why it’s important to keep an eye on the texture.
  • To save some time you can use store-bought cooked bacon.
Save Recipe
5 from 9 reviews

Creamy Turkey Casserole

Creamy Turkey Casserole is the most delicious way to use your leftover roast! Tender turkey meat and veggies are baked in a cheesy and buttery sauce.

Author: Catalina Castravet Serves: 6 servings
Prep time: 30 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes Total time: 1 hr

Ingredients

Turkey:

Veggies:

Cheesy Mixture:

Toppings:

Instructions

Cook Bacon:

Cook Veggies:

Cheesy Mixture:

Combine:

Bake:

Nutrition information

Carbohydrates: 75 Protein: 67 Fat: 48 Saturated Fat: 20 Cholesterol: 169 Sodium: 1499 Potassium: 925 Fiber: 4 Sugar: 13 Vitamin A: 1934 Vitamin C: 27 Calcium: 614 Iron: 3 Calories: 810
Save Recipe
Made This Recipe?

Show me what you made on Instagram or Facebook and tag me at @sweetnsavorymeals or hashtag it at #sweetnsavorymeals.

easy creamy turkey casserole pin

Get free recipes to your inbox!

Comments

Leave a reply

Amber Myers

I love casseroles. This one looks delicious and I am excited to try it out!

Reply

Ben

Cheese and a creamy sauce? I mean, you can't really make something better than that. I love it.

Reply

Pam Wattenbarger

I always have a ton of extra turkey after Thanksgiving. I love casseroles so saving this for then!

Reply

Melissa

Wow! This creamy turkey casserole looks delicious! I would love to make this with Thanksgiving leftovers.

Reply

Brandy Ellen Writes

Casseroles are so easy to make and can feed the fam for DAYS. I am going to save this to make with my leftover turkey after Thanksgiving.

Reply

Nikki Wayne

Such a great way to enjoy leftover turkeys, I will try this.

Reply

Gervin Khan

This is such a mouthwatering dish and to be honest, it makes me hungry upon seeing this dish.YUM!

Reply

Jennifer

Yum, I'm a sucker for a good casserole. Sending this to my husband since he insists on making a turkey just for the 4 of us LOL.

Reply

Heather

Yum, this casserole looks so good! Looks like something my family will love. Can't wait to make.

Reply

Lynndee

That looks creamy indeed. And I bet it's delicious. I may have to make this for Thanksgiving.

Reply

Janeane M Davis

I like being able to use leftovers to make new and exciting dishes. I like how customizable this recipe is.

Reply

Betsy

This one looks yummy and healthy with loads of veggies! :)

Reply

Beth

Casseroles are perfect for this time of year. This one looks amazing!

Reply

Kita Bryant

This casserole looks like it would hit the spot. I would love to make a batch of this.

Reply

katrina m kroeplin

oh this looks so good. my family would love this. ill have to save this for later.

Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *






This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.