Our delicious leftover turkey tetrazzini recipe is here for you to try for dinner tonight! You can use diced ham, tuna or leftover chicken too. Baked into a casserole in the oven with vegetables and noodles it is the ultimate comfort food meal you’ll ever try.
If you have tried all of our other leftover turkey recipe ideas and looking for another one after the holidays, this is probably our favorite.
We first shared our Instant Pot turkey tetrazzini recipe last year using leftovers, that turned out great. Just in case you don’t have that appliance I thought I would share how to make this leftover casserole in the oven too! (affiliate links present)
Leftover Turkey Tetrazzini
That’s right, we have a lot of easy leftover turkey recipes, this is a fave. After the holidays we always seem to have meat to use up and you can only eat so many sandwiches right?? Whether it is after Thanksgiving with this white or dark meat, after Christmas with ham, or with cooked chicken it’s a creamy dish that everyone loves.
Works well with some vegetables diced and thrown in there too. Fresh is great like mushrooms but you can use frozen mixed veggies too. And any shape of noodles is fine too, I buy whatever is on sale. 😉 Needless to say this is a very forgiving meal and perfect for using up everything in your fridge.
Dairy Free Tetrazzini
In need of a lactose free option? I get it, my husband does too so we have done a lot of substituting at our house. Funny enough many of the alterations go unnoticed by our kids which is great. All you have to do is use a plant based butter, Country Crock has a great one. Almond milk is an easy swap out for “regular” too. You’re going to need;
- 4 tbsp butter or plant based vegan option
- An onion diced finely
- Mushrooms, sliced works quite well
- 1/4 c all purpose flour
- Milk or dairy free milk product
- 1 tsp thyme
- Chicken broth
- 1 c peas frozen
- 2 cups of precooked leftover meat like
- makes a great leftover ham recipe
- drained can of tuna works
- leftover rotisserie chicken or turkey cut into bite size pieces
- 8 ounces of medium size pasta boiled separately to al dente and drained
Use a pinch of salt and pepper to taste and/or seasonings that you love to add into other pasta dishes. You might consider a bit of garlic powder or onion powder too. Typically especially if you top with fried onions you won’t want to add much. I prefer to taste when done and season to taste then.
Ham Tetrazzini Recipe
This really does taste great if all you have is this canned meat. I like chunk vs. the cheaper flake version in water, not oil. Similar to our Crockpot tuna casserole this can be made in your oven but just as cheesy as this one and cooks quite a bit faster too.
Want to make easy chicken tetrazzini recipe for two instead of a bunch? You can easily cut everything in half. You may still have just a bit left over but not much more than a small lunch afterwards. It does save quite well in the fridge if you do and reheats nicely as well in the microwave so you won’t waste, don’t worry.
There are very similar ingredients in the two. The latter has the parmesan cooked into the sauce with the butter whereas the other has the cheese sprinkled on the top. Both have similar creamy flavors and textures to them.
Some recipes in the past that I have seen and tried use condensed soup or sour cream, those are way to heavy for me. I started making this from scratch mixture for two reasons. Homemade is always healthier for one and it was easy for me to then alter it to make it dairy free as well. If I make half and half I can too.
Easy Turkey Tetrazzini
Melt 2 Tablespoons of butter in a large pot over medium heat. Once melted, add the onions and cook until they are slightly softened, this will take about 4 minutes. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook until your desired color and texture.
- Remove the onions and mushrooms to a small bowl. Place the remaining butter in the pot. In another pot prepare the pasta according to package directions.
- Boil over medium high heat until you have cooked pasta that’s a bit al dente.
- Whisk the flour into the hot melted butter mixture to form a roux, then whisk in the milk. Season with salt, pepper and thyme and cook for about 8 minutes until thickened.
- Stir in the chicken broth, pasta, green peas and cooked ham and cook until ham is warmed through. Set your oven to broil.
- Pour the creamy sauce pasta mixture into an 8″x8″ or 9×9 inch baking dish. Sprinkle the grated parmesan cheese over the top. (optional of course)
Sprinkling some homemade French’s fried onions on top of your tetrazzini recipe is great too. Place the casserole dish in the oven and broil until cheese is golden and melted. This step is optional of course as you could enjoy it right out of the pot. The sauce will thicken as it sits so I like to let it rest for 15 minutes before serving.
How to reheat Tetrazzini
If you don’t finish it all, don’t worry. Just like any other sauced pasta recipe it saves quite well. Allow it to cool down all the way and then transfer to a large bowl with a lid. Refrigerate for up to 4 days, but 24 hours is best. Use a microwave safe bowl to reheat for about 45 seconds, stir and then another 45 until warmed.
For more ooey gooeyness you can add more grated cheese on to the top before heating again. That will melt and add to the yum. Sometimes that is a bit too rich for me but other times I’m all about it. Seriously you should change it up with whatever you have on hand at the time. I hate wasting food so I have made this all different ways.
Frozen peas work quite well as we added here but others like mixed with carrots and corn works too if you want to add all the things. If you wanted to double this to make a large batch it is quite easy to do. Just make 2x of everything and you can use a 9×13″ pan instead. Honestly you don’t have to bake at the end at all but it adds a bit of crisp to the edges.
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- 1 8×8 pan
- 4 tbsp butter
- 1 onion diced
- 1 c mushrooms sliced
- 1/4 c all purpose flour
- 2 c milk or dairy free milk product
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1/2 c chicken broth
- 1 c peas frozen
- 2 c ham precooked, or diced meat of your choice
- 1/4 c parmesan
- 8 oz pasta boiled separately to al dente, drained
- salt and pepper to taste
- Melt 2 Tablespoons of butter in a large pot over medium heat. Once melted, add the onions and cook until slightly softened, about 4 minutes. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook until your desired color and texture.
- Remove the onions and mushrooms to a small bowl. Place the remaining butter in the pot. In another pot prepare the pasta according to package directions, boil until al dente.
- Whisk the flour into the hot melted butter mixture to form a roux, then whisk in the milk. Season with salt, pepper and thyme and cook for 8 minutes until thickened.
- Stir in the chicken broth, pasta, green peas and cooked ham and cook until ham is warmed through. Set oven to broil. Pour the pasta mixture into an 8" x 8" casserole dish and sprinkle the grated Parmesan cheese overtop. (French's fried onions on top is great too)
- Place the casserole dish in the oven and broil until cheese is golden and melted. (this step is optional)