Turkey Noodle Casserole

Cozy up with this turkey noodle casserole. Rich with a savory gruyere and mustard sauce, it’s the perfect leftover turkey recipe.

turkey noodle casserole
Elise Bauer

Every year we start our Thanksgiving planning with the best of intentions. "Last year was over-the-top. Could we please put the brakes on with the side dishes this time?" And every year, we cook way more food than our extended family could possibly eat in one sitting.

I blame my father.

He can't resist a side that sounds good. Of course we need creamed turnips along with creamed cauliflower, mashed potatoes, mashed sweet potatoes, and turnip gratin. And that's just the starches!

turkey noodle casserole
Elise Bauer

Every year we pick out a turkey big enough for all of us, not counting the fact that we will be so full with sides that we don't have a lot of room left for the turkey.

But is this a problem? Having too much turkey?

Uh, let me think about it. No. No, it is not a problem. It just means more opportunities for creative uses of turkey leftovers, like this luscious turkey noodle casserole.

It's creamy, it's crunchy, it's sort of fancy for a casserole. Never mind that though, it tastes great! A perfect home for the leftover turkey that lost out to too many sides.

Making This Turkey Casserole Recipe Your Own

  • Swap out the tarragon with some sage, thyme or rosemary.
  • Throw in some leftover vegetables, like mushrooms, peas, or carrots.
  • Try an Emmental, raclette, Jarlsberg, cheddar or Swiss cheese.
  • Replace the vermouth with more broth instead

Saving and Serving Turkey Casserole

You can make this turkey casserole in advance and store it in the fridge right in the ceramic or metal casserole dish to go directly from the refrigerator to the oven.

You can also freeze the casserole before you put it in the oven. Then, thaw in the fridge overnight and bake. You can also go directly from the freezer to the oven. It just takes about twice as long to heat it up.

Just be sure to wrap your casserole a couple of times with heavy duty foil before freezing. Be nice to your future self and label and date your casserole too! Then, you'll know what's in that mystery dish and remember to eat it within 3 months for the best results.

Sides to Serve with Turkey Casserole

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Turkey Noodle Casserole

Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 80 mins
Total Time 100 mins
Servings 6 to 10 servings

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces egg noodles

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter

  • 2 cups sliced shallots or thinly sliced onions

  • 2 cups diced celery

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1/3 cup dry vermouth or dry white wine

  • 1 1/2 cups milk

  • 1/4 cup cream or sour cream

  • 2 cups chicken or turkey stock

  • 2 teaspoons dry tarragon

  • 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard

  • 3 cups coarsely chopped cooked turkey

  • 6 ounces grated Gruyere cheese

  • Salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

  • 1 tablespoon melted butter

  • Freshly chopped parsley for garnish, optional

Method

  1. Preheat oven, and boil water:

    Preheat oven to 375°F. Start heating 4 quarts of water for the pasta. Add 2 tablespoons of salt to the water (1 tablespoon for every 2 quarts of water).

  2. Cook shallots, and add flour:

    Melt butter in a large, thick-bottomed (5-quart) pot on medium heat. Add the shallots and celery, and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.

    Stir in the flour and cook over low heat, stirring for about 3 minutes.

    cook shallots in pot for turkey noodle casserole
    Elise Bauer
  3. Cook noodles firmer than al dente:

    Put the noodles into the boiling water. Follow the package directions and cook the noodles for 2 minutes less than the range given on the package.

    The pasta should be a bit firmer than al dente. So, for example, if the package instructions say bring to a boil and cook for 6 to 10 minutes, add the pasta to the hot water, return the water to a boil and cook it for 4 minutes. While the pasta is cooking continue on with the recipe.

  4. Start the sauce:

    Into the saucepan with the butter, shallots, celery, and flour, add the dry vermouth and let bubble for a minute. Then, stir in the milk, cream, and stock. Add the tarragon.

    Bring to a simmer and cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, for about 5 to 8 minutes.

    stirred vegetables in hot cooking pot
    Elise Bauer
    creamy casserole mixture in hot cooking pot
    Elise Bauer
  5. Drain and rinse the pasta:

    By the time the sauce is done, the pasta will be ready. Drain and rinse the pasta with cold water to stop the cooking.

  6. Add cheese, mustard, and turkey to the sauce:

    Add the grated cheese and mustard to the pot. Stir until the cheese is melted. Add the chopped cooked turkey to the pot.

    Add salt to taste (depending on if you are using salted stock or not, or salted butter or not, that could be no added salt to as much as a teaspoon added). Add freshly ground black pepper.

    Casserole cream with cheese on top with wooden spoon
    Elise Bauer
    adding turkey to sauce for turkey noodle casserole
    Elise Bauer
  7. Add the pasta, lemon juice, and transfer to casserole dish:

    Now it's time to add the cooked pasta to the pot. If the noodles have stuck together, rinse them in the colander with a little water to separate them. Add the noodles to the pot with the turkey.

    Stir in the lemon juice. and djust the seasonings to your taste.

    Transfer the mixture to a buttered 3-quart casserole dish.

    noodles added to casserole mixture in pot
    Elise Bauer
    ready to cook Turkey noodle casserole in baking pan
    Elise Bauer
  8. Top with panko and melted butter:

    Sprinkle the top with panko and drizzle 1 tablespoon of melted butter over the top.

  9. Bake until golden:

    Bake the casserole at 375°F in the middle rack of the oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until it is bubbling and the top is golden.

    Fully cooked turkey noodle casserole in baking pan
    Elise Bauer

    If you can wait, let the casserole cool a bit before serving. Garnish with chopped parsley, if using.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
375 Calories
19g Fat
26g Carbs
23g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 10
Amount per serving
Calories 375
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 10g 50%
Cholesterol 99mg 33%
Sodium 474mg 21%
Total Carbohydrate 26g 9%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 23g
Vitamin C 4mg 20%
Calcium 269mg 21%
Iron 2mg 11%
Potassium 429mg 9%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.