Slow Cooker Turkey Stew with Mustard and Root Vegetables

Slow CookerTurkey Stew

Turkey thighs, seared and slow-cooked, braised in a mustard sauce with carrots and parsnips. Perfect belly warming stew for a chilly day!

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

This Slow Cooked Turkey Stew with Mustard is a braised riff off of one of my favorite recipes on the site, BBQ turkey with mustard sauce.

Turkey is a wonderful protein — easy to find and inexpensive — but it can also be quite strongly flavored, especially the dark meat.

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Strong flavors need to play with other strong flavors, and in this case we’re flavoring the turkey stew with mustard. This mustard sauce holds its own with the turkey, mellowing the turkey flavor while at the same time enhancing the overall flavor of the stew.

Slow Cooked Turkey with Mustard Sauce

To get the most flavor from the turkey thighs we’re searing them first, as well as sautéing the onions, before they go into the slow cooker.

We’re also adding carrots and parsnips early in the cooking, since they will hold up better to long slow cooking than potatoes. If you want potatoes in your stew, add them later on in the cooking.

My parents each gave this one a two thumbs up. Hope you like it too!

Slow Cooker Turkey Stew with Mustard and Root Vegetables Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 4 hours, 30 minutes
  • Salting the turkey thighs time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6-8


  • 4 turkey thighs, skin on, bone-in
  • Salt
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow or white onion, roughly chopped
  • 1-2 large parsnips, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2-3 large carrots, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 cups chicken or turkey stock
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup yellow mustard
  • 1 heaping tablespoon dry mustard powder
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle or chili powder
  • 4-6 Yukon Gold or other yellow potatoes, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup (packed) roughly chopped mustard greens, arugula, spinach, or parsley
  • 1/4 cup whole grain mustard


1 Salt the turkey thighs well and set out at room temperature for 30 minutes.

2 Sear the turkey thighs: Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat for a minute or two. Pat the turkey thighs dry with a paper towel and set them skin side down in the hot oil to brown. Turn the heat down to medium. Let them brown well, at least 3-5 minutes, before turning.

Don’t crowd the pan, the meat needs air flow around it to brown properly. Cook the turkey in batches if needed.

When the thighs are browned, place them in a slow cooker or Dutch oven.

3 Sauté the onions in the pan once the turkey has browned, then add them to the slow cooker or Dutch oven.

4 Season the stock: While the turkey and onions are browning, place the stock in a medium pot and bring to a simmer. Whisk in the brown sugar, yellow mustard (reserve the whole grain mustard for the end of the recipe), mustard powder, chipotle and a little salt. Cook for a minute and add salt to taste. Depending on how acidic your mustard is you may need to add a little cider or white vinegar as well.

5  Add the carrots and parsnips to the pot with the turkey and onions. Pour the sauce over everything until the liquid is about 3/4 of the way up the sides of the turkey and vegetables. Reserve any remaining sauce. Cover and simmer on low, or cover and turn the slow cooker on high.

6 Cook in a slow cooker for 4 hours on high, or in a Dutch oven for 1 hour on simmer.

7 Add the potatoes and a little more sauce, if you have any. Cover and cook another 1-2 hours in a slow cooker, or 30-45 minutes in the Dutch oven.

8 Strip skin and bones from turkey meat: Before serving, remove the turkey pieces from the pot, strip off and discard the bones and the skin, return the turkey pieces to the pot.

9 Add greens and mustard: Stir in the mustard greens, arugula, or other greens you are using. Stir in the whole grain mustard. Adjust seasoning, adding more salt, chipotle powder, and mustard to taste.

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How to make mustard - Did you know it's easy to make mustard from scratch? Hank shows us how.

Slow Cooker Turkey Stew with Mustard

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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19 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Andrea

    I understand the likelihood of getting a quick answer (especially now) is pretty slim, but here goes nothing. Do you add the potatoes in the last 1-2 hours or is that an additional 1-2 hours?

    Show Replies (1)
  2. Brenda

    I would love to make this but at this time of year I can only find boneless turkey thighs. Is it possible to use them and if so, how would I have to change the recipe?

    Show Replies (1)
  3. Oralea Howard

    This was ridiculously tasty. It’s definitely going to be one of my regulars… as are quite a few recipes I’ve gotten from you! I used one gigantic turkey breast as I didn’t find thighs and didn’t want to go to another store searching. It still tasted divine to me! My husband would err on the side of dark meat always but I never buy it (although willing to give it a try here). He loved it too! Thank you!


  4. Chris

    Made this today with chicken thighs (couldn’t find turkey legs or thighs anywhere). A fabulous recipe, bags of flavour and very little effort – my kind of recipe.

    Another winner Elise :)

    Thank you.


  5. Chris

    Excuse the silly question… Is yellow mustard the same as the stuff you put on hot dogs? It’s not a term I’ve heard of in England. (and does mustard come in other colours?)

    Hi Chris, yes, it’s the mustard you put on hot dogs. It has turmeric mixed in with the mustard which gives it a brighter yellow color. ~Elise

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Slow Cooked Turkey With Mustard SauceSlow Cooker Turkey Stew with Mustard and Root Vegetables