This healthy Slow Cooker Turkey Wild Rice Soup is as creamy as it is delicious. Packed with layers of flavor from fresh herbs and lemon to Parmesan and seared mushrooms, a bowl of this and you’ll be happily satisfied.
The delicious aftermath of Thanksgiving dinner can sometimes prove to be better than the big meal itself. But when we’ve had your fill of sandwiches, fresh ideas for leftovers are more than welcomed. For us, our leftovers needed a soul-soothing makeover that was not only packed with flavor but also weeknight friendly. And since the holidays tend to be pretty busy, quick, healthy, hands-off dinners are essential for getting through the season.
This creamy Slow Cooker Turkey Wild Rice Soup fits the bill exactly. It’s super simple to throw together (most of which can be prepped ahead of time), makes enough to feed a crowd or a few for the week, and is so flavorful you just might find yourself making it all winter long. And as creamy and luscious as this soup is, it’s also a healthy choice for dinner. Made with whole milk, this stew-like soup is silky-smooth without being ladened down with cream. Plus, you know my continuous soup battle with Greg…this is one we can see eye to eye on, which is pretty spectacular. The hardest part proved to be finding the Crock Pot and dusting it off.
A bowl of this wild rice soup accompanied by a generous glass of red wine, Christmas music, faux fire burning on the TV, and ornaments scattered about was the scene in our little house Sunday evening. With the smell of fresh pine lingering and the crack and pop of vinyl playing, all we needed was a few snowflakes for it to be the quintessential holiday evening.
With our house finally in order for the holiday season, all that’s left is to get Zestful Kitchen in order (and gift shopping). Keep an eye out for my annual Cookbook Gift Guide, a three-part recipe series featuring a ruby red, gem-like fruit, and fun homemade cocktail makings. It’s going to be a big month and I’m more than excited to share it with all of you.
Speaking of my cookbook gift guide, if you’ve been reading, cooking, and enjoying particular cookbooks this year, let me know in the comments below! I’d love to know what you’ve been cooking from. Plus, I’ll take any reason to pick up a new cookbook!
- 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth or turkey stock, divided
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 2 cups chunked carrots
- 1 cup diced celery
- 1 cup diced onion
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- 1 cup dry wild rice
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme, divided
- 1 Parmesan rind
- Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 sprig fresh sage
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- 1 pound cremini mushrooms, stemmed and quartered
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups whole milk, warmed
- 1 pound shredded turkey or chicken (about 4 cups)
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh lemon zest
- Combine broth, wine, carrots, celery, onion, garlic, rice, 1 tablespoon thyme, and Parmesan rind in a 6-quart slow cooker or crock pot; season with salt and pepper. Tie thyme sprigs, sage sprig, and bay leaves together with kitchen twine, add to slow, cover, and cook on low 5–6 hours until vegetables and rice are tender. Discard herb bundle.
- Heat 2 tablespoons butter in a sauté pan over medium-high. Stir in mushrooms and remaining 1 teaspoon thyme, season with salt and pepper, and cook until liquid has released and evaporated and mushrooms are brown, 7–8 minutes. Transfer mushrooms to slow cooker (I save a few for garnish).
- In now empty pan, melt remaining 4 tablespoons butter over medium heat for the roux. Whisk in flour and cook until fragrant and golden brown, about 2 minutes. In a steady stream, slowly whisk in milk and cook until thickened and creamy, about 4 minutes; stir into soup.
- Add turkey, parsley, and zest to soup; thin with additional broth if desired. Serve with Parmesan and lemon wedges.