Check out this easy recipe for a very flavorful and filling turkey curry, flavored with curry powder, turmeric, coriander, and cinnamon.
It's one of my favorite ways to use up leftover turkey after the Thanksgiving holiday!
One of the best things about Thanksgiving is the leftover turkey. It actually used to stress me out - how do I use up all that meat!
Here's an overview of the ingredients you'll need to make this tasty curry. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below.
- Oil: I use avocado oil, which has a high smoke point and a neutral flavor. Ghee is another tasty option.
- Veggies: I use chopped onions and sliced bell peppers.
- Aromatics: Garlic and ginger add great flavor to this tasty curry.
- Spices: I make a spice mix with salt, pepper, curry powder, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper.
- Cooked turkey meat: Make sure to remove the skin (its texture won't work in a curry), then cut the meat into chunks. I usually use white meat, but you can use dark meat or a mix of both.
- Chicken broth: I use the Pacific Natural brand. When I happen to have homemade chicken broth, I use that.
- Cornstarch: It helps thicken the curry.
- You can use ghee instead of avocado oil.
- This recipe works beautifully with leftover chicken!
- Add more spices, such as paprika or (my personal favorite) smoked paprika. Dried thyme is also good in this recipe.
- For an especially creamy curry, mix in ¼ cup of room-temperature heavy cream at the very end, after adding the cornstarch.
Turkey Curry Instructions
The detailed instructions for making this recipe are included in the recipe card below. Here's an overview of the steps:
- Your first step is to mix the spices.
- Now, saute the veggies in some oil. (Photo 1).
- Add the garlic, ginger, and spices. (Photo 2).
- Add the turkey. Stir to make sure everything is well-coated. (Photos 3-4).
- Add the broth and simmer for a short while to allow the flavors to meld. (Photo 5).
- The last step is to thicken the curry with cornstarch. Remember to mix it first with a bit of cold water.
The challenge when making this recipe is that we're using cooked meat and then cooking it some more. This could potentially result in the turkey meat drying out.
However, as you've probably noticed, we're cooking it minimally - basically just reheating it. Having said that, the juicier the meat you start off with, the better the end result will be.
Yes, I often do. It's easy to use a frozen mix of sliced peppers, and you can cook them from frozen. You can also use frozen chopped onions.
Yes, you can. But in my opinion, chicken broth is more flavorful and will give you superior results.
I don't recommend that. Without it, you'll basically have soup - admittedly tasty soup, but soup nonetheless, while we're aiming for a thick curry.
If you'd rather avoid cornstarch, I believe there are alternatives such as konjac flour. If opting for that, follow the package directions. You'll only need a little.
Cooked leftovers generally keep in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to 4 days.
But since we're using cooked turkey in this recipe, you should start counting those four days from the day you originally cooked the turkey.
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Flavorful Turkey Curry
- 1 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- 1 medium onion chopped (6 oz)
- 14 oz frozen bell pepper slices (or three large bell peppers, chopped)
- 1 tablespoon fresh garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger root minced
- 3 cups cooked turkey breast skinless, cut into chunks (16 oz)
- 2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- Mix the spices in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Heat the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat, for about 2 minutes. Add the onions and the frozen bell peppers. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the peppers have defrosted and the onion is tender, about 5 minutes. If using fresh peppers, add a splash of water if the pan gets too dry.
- Stir in the garlic, the ginger, and the spices, then add the turkey and stir to coat.
- Add the broth. Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat down to medium-low and simmer the curry, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
- Mix the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of cold water. Stir the mixture into the curry. Keep stirring until the curry thickens, about 1 more minute. Serve immediately, over rice or cauliflower rice.