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This Thai turkey soup recipe is irresistibly flavorful with a creamy coconut curry broth. It’s really easy to make and the tastiest way to use up leftover turkey!
Why you’ll love it
I hope those of you who celebrated Thanksgiving had a good one! If you made a Roast Turkey, chances are you have some leftovers. This Thai turkey curry soup is the perfect thing to ease you out of your turkey coma. It’s also a super low effort alternative to sandwiches.
This turkey soup recipe is warm and cozy but also fresh and fairly light! That’s what I love about making Thai-style food. We’ve got creamy coconut milk, fresh herbs, and vibrant flavors. Such a good combo, and you’ll having a piping hot bowl ready in just 30 minutes.
What you’ll need
- Olive oil – for sautéing
- Onion and garlic – tasty aromatics. I like using sweet (Vidalia) onions.
- Thai red curry paste – it’s a ready-made paste that has fragrant spices and lemongrass. I recommend Thai Kitchen brand, which is not what I’d consider spicy (some brands are).
- Chicken broth – for more savory flavor
- Lime juice & wedges – for a pop of acidity and brightness
- Turkey – we’re using cooked leftover turkey
- Rice noodles – they’re those translucent ones that come in different sizes; I prefer thicker noodles here to vermicelli
- Red bell pepper – it adds some veggie goodness
- Coconut milk – definitely use full fat for the most flavor and best texture
- Basil, cilantro, scallions – classic fresh ingredients in Thai-style recipes
Naturally, this soup works well for Thanksgiving leftovers, but it could also be made on another occasion where you have leftover Roast Chicken or rotisserie chicken. Or just cook a turkey breast if you want something a little different. I’ve done that before.
How to make Thai turkey soup
This is an overview with step-by-step photos. Full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.
In a soup pot or Dutch oven, sauté the onion in the oil until softened. Stir in the garlic and curry paste, and cook for about 30 seconds. Add in the broth, water, lime juice, turkey, noodles, and red bell pepper.
Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat. Stir in the coconut milk. Simmer until the noodles are cooked through. Add in the fresh herbs and scallions. Taste, and season with salt & pepper as needed.
Substitutions and variations
- This turkey curry soup is flavorful but not what I’d call spicy. If you do want to make it spicier, add some grated ginger, sriracha, and/or chili paste. Play with the flavor, and taste and adjust until you think it tastes perfect!
- Are you a salt fiend like me? Add in a splash of soy sauce.
- If you’re not feeling some of the fresh herbs, simply don’t include them all.
What to serve with turkey curry soup
- I like to serve each bowl with a lime wedge for an additional burst of fresh flavor.
- It’s pretty hearty, so pair it with a slice of fresh crusty bread, and you’re good to go.
- For more Thai flavors, make my Thai Quinoa Salad as a fresh complement.
Leftovers and storage
- Store leftover soup for 3-4 days, but keep in mind the noodles will soak up the broth fast. You may need to add a splash more chicken broth when reheating.
- You could freeze leftovers for up to 3 months if you’d like, but I don’t really recommend it. The turkey is cooked twice already, so that could make it dry out even more upon thawing and reheating, and the noodles can change texture.
I hope you’ll give this leftover turkey soup a try! Questions? Ask me in the comments below. Please leave a star rating and review, or tag me #saltandlavender on Instagram.
Thai Turkey Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 medium onion chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 3 heaping tablespoons Thai red curry paste
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups water
- Juice of 1/2 lime
- 2 cups cooked turkey
- 7 ounces rice noodles see note
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- 1 (13.5 ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
- 1 handful fresh basil torn/chopped, to taste
- 1 handful fresh cilantro chopped, to taste
- 1 handful chopped scallions to taste
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Lime wedges for serving
- Sauté the onion in the olive oil in a large soup pot for 5 minutes over medium-high heat.
- Add the garlic and curry paste and cook for 30 seconds.
- Stir in the chicken broth, water, lime juice, turkey, rice noodles, and red bell pepper. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low, stir in the coconut milk, and let the soup simmer for 10 minutes.
- Stir in the basil, cilantro, and scallions. Season with salt & pepper as needed and serve immediately with lime wedges.
- Serves 4-6.
- I use Thai Kitchen red curry paste, and it isn’t particularly spicy. Some brands are spicy, however. Want to make this spicier? Add some grated ginger, sriracha, and/or chili paste.
- Rice noodles come in a variety of brands and package sizes, so you don’t have to be super precise with the weight as you may need to use only part of a package. I buy the thicker ones (3 mm) vs. the super fine ones that are almost like angel hair pasta. I like to buy Thai Kitchen’s stir fry noodles when I can find them.
- I used Thai Kitchen red curry paste and coconut milk. I recommend their coconut milk because it’s not too watery unlike some other brands I’ve tried.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
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This recipe was originally published on November 23, 2018. It’s been updated with new photos and better instructions but is the same great recipe!