Perfect for your leftover holiday turkey, this Creamy Turkey and Wild Rice Soup also includes lots of kale and mushrooms, for a hearty and delicious soup!
This Creamy Turkey and Wild Rice Soup is perfect for everyone! For my US friends, who may have leftover turkey in the fridge. For my Canadian friends, who might have leftover turkey in the freezer or for anyone else, who can easily grab a store-bought rotisserie chicken to make this one.
Yes, this soup is delicious starting with either cooked turkey or chicken, so you can enjoy this one anytime. It's chock full of goodness, from the turkey, to the wild rice, to the kale and mushrooms. And while it's called "creamy", it's only has a bit of half and half cream in it, so it's never over-the-top rich. Simply hearty, filling and delicious. A great dinner soup!
Cook's Notes for Creamy Turkey and Wild Rice Soup
A note about rice in soups: When you add rice to any soup, it's all fine when enjoyed fresh, but if you plan or expect to have leftover soup to enjoy later, you are much better off to keep the soup and the rice separate until just before eating. Why? Because the rice will continue to absorb liquid even after it's cooked, even when it's cool. As a result, your soup liquid (the part that makes it a soup), will disappear as it sits in the fridge. Sure, you could add a bit more stock, cream or water to the pot, but because you may need to add quite a bit, it changes the soup and alters the balance of flavours. Instead, simply add the cooked wild rice to the bowl and spoon the hot soup over-top. Always a perfect bowl of soup!
Apparently in some places you may be able to get pre-cooked wild rice in one of those shelf-stable pouch things. If you can, that's probably the easiest route. If not, wild rice isn't hard to cook. It just takes longer.
For Canadians, you can buy a small amount of wild rice easily at Bulk Barn!
As mentioned, if you don't have leftover cooked turkey, simply use cooked chicken from a store-bought rotisserie chicken instead.
How to Cook Wild Rice: The basic ratio for cooking wild rice is 4:1. That is, 4 cups liquid to 1 cup wild rice. To cook wild rice, first rinse uncooked rice well under cold running water. Drain. In a large saucepan with a lid, combine rinsed wild rice with 4 cups water or stock and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover pot with lid and reduce heat to low or a heat level that will produce a gentle simmer. Cook wild rice until the liquid is all absorbed, about 40-55 minutes. Leftover, cooked wild rice can be frozen in small freezer bags for later use.
Creamy Turkey and Wild Rice Soup
- 1 cup uncooked wild rice (or 8 oz pkg of pre-cooked wild rice)
- 1 cup onion (diced)
- 1 cup carrot (diced)
- 1 cup celery (diced)
- 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
- 8 oz cremini mushrooms (sliced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup water
- 4 cups baby kale leaves
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups shredded or diced cooked turkey (or leftover cooked chicken/rotisserie chicken)
- 1 cup half and half cream (10%)
- 1/3 cup flour
- If cooking your own wild rice, start the wild rice cooking about 30 minutes before starting the soup. To cook the wild rice, combine 1 cup uncooked wild rice with 4 cups water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Allow to simmer, covered, until all the liquid has been absorbed, about 45 minutes.
- In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion, carrot and celery and cook, stirring, about 3 minutes. Add the thyme leaves, mushrooms and garlic. Cook, stirring, until mushrooms are starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add broth and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 8-10 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Add the kale, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the kale wilts, 1-2 minutes. Add the cooked turkey (or chicken) and stir to combine.
- In a small bowl, combine the half and half cream and the flour. Whisk mixture well until there are no lumps. Stir this mixture into the soup and cook, stirring, until soup thickens. Taste soup and add more salt and pepper, as needed.
- Add the wild rice: If you will be eating all the soup right away, simply add the cooked wild rice to the soup and stir to combine, heating for a few minutes, if necessary. If you expect to have soup for left-overs, it is best not to add the rice to the soup, but rather to spoon the hot soup over some warm wild rice in each bowl, then stirring to combine. The reason for this is that the wild rice will absorb all the liquid from the soup as it sits in the fridge. If you keep them separate, you won't have that problem and your left-overs will be as great as the freshly made soup!