These Turkey Alfredo Stuffed Shells are a great way to use up leftover turkey. This cozy, comforting dish is perfect to take to a holiday weekend gathering, or serve for Sunday dinner.
We always have a lot of leftover turkey after Thanksgiving. With just six adults (and this year, a very hungry one year old!), even the smallest Thanksgiving recipes for turkey leaves us with a lot of extra meat.
Sure, I could serve just a turkey breast instead, but I love roasting the whole bird. Plus, I really like the dark meat! And truth be told, I don’t really mind leftovers.
After I’ve had my fill of turkey sandwiches, I generally like to repurpose the last bit of turkey into a different type of meal. These Turkey Alfredo Stuffed Shells would be great to serve if you have another family or friend gathering to go to over the holiday weekend. They’d also be a delicious Sunday dinner.
These Turkey Alfredo Stuffed Shells use leftover Thanksgiving turkey.
I liked to use a combination of chopped light and dark meat, but use whatever you have on hand. These stuffed shells can also be made with leftover roasted chicken (or meat from a rotisserie chicken), as well as cooked ground turkey.
The ingredients for stuffed shells:
- large pasta shells
- cranberry cheddar cheese
- lemon zest
- salt and pepper
Tips for making these Turkey Alfredo Stuffed Shells successful:
- You’ll need about 20 jumbo pasta shells for this recipe, which is about one half of a 12 ounce box.
- Even if you’re familiar with making alfredo sauce, you may not have tried lemon zest in it before. Even if you’re a bit leery, I encourage you to give it a try! The acidic flavor of the lemon zest adds a brightness and depth of flavor to the creamy sauce.
- Stuffed shells aren’t stuffed shells without cheese, and I used Great Midwest Cranberry Cheddar Cheese for these shells. It’s a creamy, sharp white Cheddar cheese with tart dried cranberries mixed in. I LOVE this cheese for everyday cheese-and-cracker-snacking, and I loved it in these stuffed shells, too. Cranberry and turkey are such a perfect seasonal pairing!
- Don’t worry if the alfredo sauce seems a little thinner (before the shells go into the oven) than alfredo sauce you might be used to. It’ll thicken up more as it bakes!
What to serve with alfredo stuffed shells?
Nothing pairs with a rich, creamy pasta like a salad with a bright, acidic dressing. Some of my favorites are green salad with miso dressing, my Really Good Thanksgiving Salad, and a winter citrus salad with Lacroix salad dressing.
- 2 large eggs
- 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
- 1/2 small onion, finely chopped
- 3 cups chopped cooked turkey
- 1-1/2 cups shredded cranberry Cheddar cheese
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream, divided
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, plus more for garnish
- 20 jumbo pasta shells (1/2 of a 12 ounce box)
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2-1/3 cups whole milk
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- In large bowl, whisk eggs until smooth. Add celery, onion, turkey, cheese, 2 tablespoons cream and 1/4 cup parsley; stir until well combined.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain.
- Meanwhile, heat butter over medium heat. Add garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add flour; cook 2 minutes or until light golden brown, stirring constantly.
- Whisk in milk and remaining 1 cup cream. Heat to boiling over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook 2 to 3 minutes or until sauce thickens, whisking constantly.
- Place thin layer of sauce in bottom of cast iron skillet or baking dish. Fill pasta shells with turkey mixture and place in skillet. Spoon remaining sauce evenly over shells.
- Transfer to oven and bake 25 minutes or until edges are bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes; serve garnished with parsley.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 762Total Fat: 44gSaturated Fat: 23gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 302mgSodium: 832mgCarbohydrates: 36gFiber: 2gSugar: 16gProtein: 53g
More great thanksgiving leftover ideas:
- Leftover Turkey Chili – uses leftover turkey and stuffing.
- Thanksgiving Leftover Waffles – uses leftover herbs, cranberry sauce, turkey and gravy.
- Turkey & Gnocchi Arrabiata Soup – uses leftover turkey.
- Loaded Mashed Potato Bake – uses leftover mashed potatoes.
- Thanksgiving Leftover Dumplings – uses leftover stuffing, turkey and cranberry sauce.
- Cranberry Sauce Muffins – uses leftover cranberry sauce.
- Pumpkin-Brie Quesadillas – uses leftover pumpkin puree.
- Turkey Pasta Carbonara from Dinner at the Zoo
- Turkey Pot Pie from Sugar Spun Run
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Saputo Cheese USA Inc. Sponsored posts help me pay for the costs associated with this blog (groceries…lots of groceries), and help support me as I pursue a career in recipe development and food photography. All opinions are 100% my own.