This turkey rice casserole is my favorite way to use up leftover turkey from Thanksgiving or Christmas. It's a delicious all-in-one meal that's easy to put together, making it perfect for busy weeknights!
I don't know about you, but after Thanksgiving, the last thing I want to make is an involved meal. That's why this leftover turkey casserole is my go-to recipe after the holidays!
It's full of delicious veggies and turkey in a rich and creamy sauce. Finished off with a crunch from the cheesy, buttery Ritz crackers, this is a hearty and satisfying meal everyone is guaranteed to love!
Table of Contents
Why You'll Love This Recipe
Nutritious ingredients. This casserole is full of incredible veggies, flavorful turkey, and rice. It's a healthier meal that I always feel good about feeding my family after indulging in pies over the holidays!
It's filling. Everything you need for a complete meal is in this casserole! No need to worry about making side dishes. Everyone will be perfectly satisfied with this dish.
Always a crowd pleaser. This is one of those meals you'll serve for a family dinner, and everyone will be asking for it again! So make this turkey tenderloin any time, and you can use the leftovers for this casserole.
- Olive oil- or another neutral oil.
- Vegetables- I like to use diced carrots, bell peppers, onion, and mushrooms.
- Turkey- leftover turkey from Thanksgiving works great!
- Chicken stock- for the base of the sauce.
- Heavy Cream- adds richness to the sauce.
- Long grain rice- I used white rice.
- Salt and pepper- a pinch of each.
- Crackers- Ritz or any butter crackers for the topping.
- Butter- melted for the crunchy topping
- Parmesan Cheese- a delicious addition to the topping.
How To Make Turkey Rice Casserole
Step 1: Cook the veggies. Preheat the oven to 350°F and heat a non-stick skillet to medium-high heat. Add the olive oil to the pan, and once hot, add the carrots, peppers, onion, and mushrooms. Cook for 10 minutes or until the veggies are fork-tender.
Step 2: Cook the rice. Add the rice and turkey, along with a pinch of salt and pepper, to the skillet. Cover the ingredients completely with the chicken stock. If needed, you can add some water to cover everything. Then lower the heat to low-medium, cover the skillet, and let everything cook until all the liquid has been absorbed. You'll want to stir the mixture occasionally so that the rice doesn't stick to the pan.
Step 3: Make the topping. While the rice is cooking, you can make the topping by breaking the crackers into smaller pieces. Then mix the cracker pieces with the melted butter and parmesan cheese.
Step 4: Assemble the casserole. Once the rice is ready, add the heavy cream to the mixture and stir well to combine. Transfer everything to a greased 9x13-inch casserole dish and make sure the casserole is spread evenly in the dish. To finish it off, top the casserole with the cheesy, buttery cracker mixture.
Step 5: Bake and serve. Cook the casserole in the oven for about 12-15 minutes, just until the crackers are golden brown. Then remove it from the oven and serve warm. Enjoy!
Tips To Make The Best Recipe
- Make sure you rinse the rice before cooking to remove any excess starch.
- Don't overcook the veggies! They'll continue cooking in the oven, and you don't want them to be too mushy.
- If you find your liquid is decreasing and your rice is still hard, add more stock or water as needed.
- Try not to open the lid of your pan too often. This will cause heat to escape and result in uncooked rice.
Storage and Reheating Instructions
In the fridge: You can store any leftover casserole in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. The amount of time will depend on when you cook the turkey.
In the freezer: If you want to keep the leftovers for longer, they'll keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. First, let the casserole cool completely, then transfer it to a freezer-safe container.
Reheating: I've found the best way to reheat this dish is by placing it in a 350°F oven for about 10 minutes. You can also pop it in the microwave in 30-second intervals if you're in a hurry.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I add anything to this casserole?
Yes! This is the perfect casserole to add more veggies like broccoli, peas, or corn. You can also top the casserole with shredded mozzarella or cheddar cheese before adding the crackers.
What kind of rice should I use for this casserole?
Long-grain white rice works best, but you can also use brown rice or even wild rice if you want!
What can I serve this casserole with?
More Casserole Recipes
- Ground turkey casserole
- Jiffy corn casserole
- Green bean casserole with bacon
- Sweet potato crunch casserole
- Vidalia onion casserole
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 cup carrots, peeled and diced small
- ½ cup red bell pepper, diced small
- ½ cup green bell pepper, diced small
- ½ cup onion, diced small
- 1 ½ cups mushrooms, diced small
- 1lb. turkey
- 2 ½ cups chicken stock
- 1 ½ cups long-grain rice
- ½ cup heavy cream
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 1 ½ cup Ritz crackers
- ¼ cup melted butter
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
- Heat a non-stick skillet to medium-high heat and add the olive oil to it. Add the carrots, peppers, onion, and mushrooms and cook for 10 minutes.
- Add the rice, turkey, salt, and pepper and cover with the chicken stock - make sure that you completely cover the meat and rice with liquid. If needed, add more water. Lower the heat to low-medium, cover, and let it cook until all the liquid has been absorbed.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180ºC).
- While the rice is cooking, make the topping by breaking the Ritz crackers and mixing them with butter and parmesan cheese in a bowl.
- Once the rice is ready, add the heavy cream and mix well to the skillet and mix. Transfer the mixture to a greased 9x13-inch casserole dish. Cover with the cracker topping.
- Cook for 12-15 minutes, just until the crackers are golden brown. Serve warm and enjoy!
Serving Size:1 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 394Total Fat: 27.5gSaturated Fat: 12.5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 100mgSodium: 257mgCarbohydrates: 19.8gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 22.3g