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Turkey Tetrazzini with a Crunchy Parmesan Panko Topping

Creamy Turkey Tetrazzini with mushrooms, peas and a crunchy topping made with panko breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese. So good you’ll be roasting two turkeys!

Turkey Tetrazzini with Parmesan Panko Topping - leftover Thanksgiving turkey works great or use chicken if that's what you've got. Either way, it's easy and delish!

Thanksgiving is in just two short weeks and there’s going to be a LOT of leftover turkey going on.

I’m slowly sharing some new Thanksgiving recipes like my already popular Blue Cheese Green Bean Casserole and all the details on a foolproof juicy, roasted turkey with crispy skin (seriously, if you’re roasting a turkey this year, try this method)!

I have at least five more coming down the pipeline in the next week and a half, all easy and all delicious. But right now I want to talk turkey leftovers.

Turkey Tetrazzini is one of my very favorite ways to use up leftover Thanksgiving turkey. When leftovers can be transformed into an entirely new dish, I’m always on board.

I love how customizable this recipe is, too – add mushrooms and peas if you like or simply leave them out. Leftover green beans? Toss ’em in! No leftover turkey? Use chicken. It’s all good – literally.


Tetrazzini is a dish made with turkey or chicken and baked in a creamy sauce with pasta. It usually has a crunchy top that complements its creamy base. I’ve seen versions made with seafood as well, although it’s much less common.

Sometimes vegetables are added as well; in the case of this recipe, I’ve added peas. It’s made often with Thanksgiving turkey leftovers as a way to use turn them into something else entirely.

Turkey Tetrazzini with Parmesan Panko Topping - leftover Thanksgiving turkey works great or use chicken if that's what you've got. Either way, it's easy and delish!


It’s not difficult to make turkey tetrazzini, there are just a few steps involved. Cook your pasta and drain it very well (you don’t want any liquid watering down your sauce).

Make the quick sauce, toss it all together with your turkey and any vegetables you’re using, then mix up your topping and spread it on top.

Bake it according to your recipe’s instructions, taking care to make sure your topping gets nicely browned and crispy. The topping in this recipe is truly the best!

Be sure to pay special attention when seasoning – even after I’ve seasoned each component and baked it, I typically add a little more salt and a lot of freshly ground black pepper to my own plate – it really brings out the flavor.

The other day I was busy (and therefore absentminded) and forgot to add it. I was thinking, “hmmmm…what’s missing from this?” when I remembered I’d forgotten the extra seasoning. It’s amazing what a difference the freshly ground black pepper makes!


You can freeze it with no problems. You’ll want to be certain it’s wrapped tightly and it will need to be thawed in the refrigerator overnight before baking to ensure the best results.

I’ll usually double the recipe and make two dishes, then freeze one for dinner on a night when I know we’ll be busy.

The leftovers reheat well, too (yes, you’ll definitely have leftovers from your leftovers :) This recipe makes a LOT. Which is perfect since you’ll want to be out shopping all day for Black Friday and you’ll need something delicious to come home to!

Turkey Tetrazzini with Parmesan Panko Topping - leftover Thanksgiving turkey works great or use chicken if that's what you've got. Either way, it's easy and delish!

Turkey Tetrazzini with a Crunchy Parmesan Panko Topping

Yield: 8-10 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

This Turkey Tetrazzini is a great way to use leftover turkey or chicken, but so good you won't wait for leftovers!


  • 1 pound spaghetti or linguine, cooked according to package directions
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/2 sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups low-sodium chicken stock or broth
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 2-4 cups shredded leftover turkey
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan


  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Heat skillet over medium heat. Add 1/4 cup butter and, once melted, add onions. Cook until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for one minute more. Sprinkle flour over onions, cooking for one to two minutes, stirring occasionally. Whisk in chicken broth and heavy cream. Bring just to a strong simmer, reduce heat and cook until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally, about five minutes. Add salt and freshly ground black pepper, adding more if necessary (to taste). Stir in turkey, cooked noodles, and frozen peas (you may want to use a large mixing bowl for this). Pour mixture into a greased 2-quart casserole dish or 13x9 pan.
  3. Melt butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Add breadcrumbs and parmesan, mix thoroughly. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture over the top of casserole.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes or until hot and bubbling and topping is lightly browned.


If adding mushrooms, add them with the onions and cook until their liquid has been released and evaporated.

A few readers have mentioned that they use two 8x8 pans and freeze one for later. I think this is a great idea!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 644Total Fat: 37gSaturated Fat: 20gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 201mgSodium: 656mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 2gSugar: 5gProtein: 41g

This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix. Amounts based on 10 servings.

Kristy Bernardo
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