Turn That Last Bit Of Leftover Christmas Turkey Into A Cheesy Casserole

Photo: Claire Lower

If I had to pick one casserole to eat for the rest of my life, it would be chicken—or in this case, turkey—spaghetti. This thing is a cheesy, kitschy, condensed-soup-soaked masterpiece. It is a casserole in the truest sense of the word, and it is a great vehicle for even the saddest leftover turkey.

The Turducken Casserole Is The Easier Way To Eat Three Birds At Once

I have made many a clever dinner in my day, but one thing I have never messed with is the turducken. Nothing against the excessive gluttony of it all — eating three birds at once actually sounds like fun — I just value my time, and deboning three birds just to re-form them around each other takes up too much of it. But by layering turkey, chicken, and duck in a casserole dish, we can get all three feathered friends in a single bite, without having to deal with too many bones.

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You see, even if all you have left is the driest dregs of your Thanksgiving bird, those turkey bits will be rendered delicious by cream of mushroom, Rotel, and Velveeta. If you think you are too good for cream of mushroom, Rotel and Velveeta, you’re lying to yourself, and it’s only causing you pain. Let the processed, creamy, salty goodness of these canned scientific marvels comfort your tired body and soul. After the culinary home cook competition that is Thanksgiving, we all need a break, and there’s no shame in opening a can or three. (Note: If you are serving this to an Italian American or an Italian from Italy, do not call it “spaghetti” unless you want to hear “ok, but this isn’t spaghetti,” approximately 37 times in one evening.)

As you have probably gathered, turkey spaghetti is very easy to make. You can use up to a pound of leftover turkey for every pound of pasta, but don’t worry if you only have a few handfuls of meat—the cheesy noodles are great on their own. To make it, you will need:

  • Up to 450g of leftover turkey, shredded

  • 450g of spaghetti noodles

  • 1 onion (You can also throw in some diced bell pepper, if you wish.)

  • 2 tablespoons of butter

  • 2 cans of cream of mushroom soup

  • 1 can diced tomatoes

  • Green chilies to taste

  • 340g of shredded tasty cheese

  • 2 teaspoons of seasoning salt

  • 1 cup sharp shredded cheddar

Cook the spaghetti in a big pot of salted water until the noodles are al dente. In the meantime, dice your onion and sauté it in two tablespoons of butter over medium heat until it is lightly caramelised. Set aside.

In a large sauce pan, combine condensed soup, diced tomatoes and chilies, and tasty cheese, and stir over medium heat until the cheese product is fully melted. This should not take long, as cheese is very prone to melting. Stir in the cooked noodles, turkey, and onion, and season with salt. Transfer everything to a greased 20 by 20cm casserole dish, top with shredded cheddar, and bake in a 350-degree oven until it’s heated through and the cheese has melted and slightly browned. Consume while watching Christmas movies in sweatpants.


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