I don’t know about you but the one thing I always have the most leftovers of after Thanksgiving is turkey. After a week of turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce and gravy sandwiches, it was time to switch things up. This soup was perfect. It helped use up a bunch of turkey I had in the fridge plus it was really hearty and great to have on a day that feels like -13° outside. If you don’t have leftover turkey, the original recipe I based mine from called for ground turkey meatballs that you allow to cook in the soup. I’d imagine this would create meatballs that would hold up a lot better than mine did. My meatballs were very delicate but the main goal for me was to use up leftovers so just be warned, if you aren’t gentle with the meatballs, they’ll probably end up falling apart on you but the soup will still be just as delicious.
Carrot Soup with Turkey Meatballs and Spinach
inspired by Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen via Parade
For the Soup:
2 tablespoons of olive oil
8-10 carrots, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, smashed
red pepper flakes
4 cups of reduced sodium vegetable broth
2 cups of spinach leaves
For the Meatballs:
1/2 pound of cooked turkey, minced with a food processor until fine
1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup of bread crumbs
2-4 tablespoons of cream*
1 clove of garlic, minced
kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic, onion, carrots, salt, and red pepper flakes until onions become translucent, about 15 minutes.
2. Stir in broth, cover pot and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.
3. While soup is simmering, make meatballs by combing all ingredients in a bowl. More cream may be added if you need your mixture a bit more moist to form balls. Once your mixture is wet enough that it is clumping together, form 1-inch balls. Set aside.
4. Once the vegetables are tender, use an immersion blender or regular blender to purée the soup until smooth. Depending on how thick or thin you like your soups you may have to add a bit more broth at the point.
5. When your soup has reached your desired consistency add spinach and stir until leaves begin to wilt. Gently add turkey meatballs in at this time and if desired a bit of cream*.
6. Cook for a few more minutes until meatballs are warm and serve.
*I like my soups a little creamier therefore I always add a bit at the end but if you’re trying to save calories or you don’t care for cream then you can omit this part. You can also substitute milk or water in the meatballs for cream.