Sick of turkey yet? (recipe for turkey chowder with criminis, wild rice & pancetta)

Our spatchcocked turkey was delicious this Thanksgiving. I ate two lunches worth of sandwiches on walnut cranberry bread and two dinners worth of turkey tacos (yes, we squeezed everything from turkey to sage sweet potatoes into delicious sprouted corn tortillas and fried them up in coconut oil---sounds strange, but it was awesome).

Tonight I wanted something different. Enter: turkey 'chowda'.  I come from Rhode Island so any talk of chowder gets me a little bit excited. There's nothing like a warm bowl of clam chowder on a blustery winter day. But I'm also a bit of a chowder snob. Please people, don't just blend up corn and throw in some cream and call it a chowder... please?

This turkey chowder from an old issue of Bon Appetit is perfect for Thanksgiving leftovers. I used up the rest of my turkey, cream, gravy and even the stuffing. Yes, even the stuffing. I managed to make it gluten free by subbing almond flour for regular flour (and my stuffing was already made with almond flour bread).  I didn't have any corn in the freezer so I skipped that--but I would've included it. I also used bacon instead of pancetta, because they don't sell pancetta up here in the hills. Even better would be to use the wild porcinis that we didn't find this week. Next year.

But don't skip the gravy. Definitely not. I made cream gravy this year and I loved it.  Before adding it, the chowder was good, but the gravy put it over the top.

Don't be afraid of the turkey stock part. If you didn't make it this year, you can sub chicken stock. It was so easy to throw the carcass in a pot of water after  Thanksgiving dinner along with some veggies, herbs & garlic. I put a few quarts in the freezer and so had plenty on hand for the chowder.

Turkey Chowder with criminis, wild rice and pancetta- (taken directly from Epicurious)
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup wild rice (about 5 ounces), rinsed, drained
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter/oil
  • 2 3-ounce packages sliced pancetta (Italian bacon), diced (I used bacon)
  • 12 ounces crimini (baby bella) mushrooms, sliced (about 5 1/2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped shallots
  • 1/3 cup  flour (use almond flour for gluten free)
  • 10 cups Turkey Stock
  • 1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary (or fresh)
  • 2 to 4 cups chopped cooked turkey meat (reserved from carcass)
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream (I used less)
  • leftover stuffing & gravy (optional)
  • Chopped fresh Italian parsley for garnish
Bring 2 1/2 cups water, rice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt to boil in medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until rice is tender but still firm to bite, 45 to 60 minutes (time will vary depending on variety of rice). Drain; set aside.
Heat butter/oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add pancetta and cook until browned, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to paper towels to drain. Add mushrooms to pot and cook until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to medium bowl. Add butter to same pot. Add carrots and celery. Cover; cook until vegetables begin to soften, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add shallots; stir until soft, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle flour over and stir 1 minute. Return mushrooms to pot. Mix in Turkey Stock and rosemary; bring to boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low, partially cover, and simmer 15 minutes.
Add rice, pancetta, turkey meat, corn and leftover stuffing (if using) to soup. Simmer to blend flavors, about 10 minutes. Stir in cream & gravy. Season to taste with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD: Can be made 3 days ahead. Cool slightly. Chill uncovered until cool. Cover and keep chilled. Rewarm over medium heat before serving.
Divide soup among bowls, sprinkle with parsley, and serve. 



  1. Wow! This sounds so good I might just go out and buy some more turkey to make it soon!

  2. oh my gosh this sounds SOOOOOO good right now. we didn't cook this year and i haven't had my turkey fill!


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