This Turkey Tetrazzini is a creamy baked pasta with a homemade sauce, shredded turkey, spaghetti and a golden cheesy crust! Make ahead and freezer friendly!
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As weird as it is, the kids are heading back to school in one way or another and with this school year being as different as it is, we will need all the easy comfort foods!
This Turkey Tetrazzini is a creamy, cozy meal that is easy to make ahead and freezer friendly.
It’s also one of my kids favorite meals, and since it’s loaded with lean shredded turkey, high fibre pasta, and lighter on the cream than most, it ticks all of my boxes!
I like to grab a boneless turkey breast or turkey breast filet, and either simmer it in a covered skillet until tender or throw it in the slow cooker until it shreds.
This way, I have an easy, ready-to-go protein that I can use in a variety of meals throughout the week.
Sometimes just having one piece of the dinner puzzle ready to go makes a world of difference in your day, and shredded turkey is a great source of protein that pairs well with so many flavors!
What’s in Turkey Tetrazzini?
Everyone has their own way to make this classic casserole, and I have a few preferences of my own 😉
Turkey Tetrazzini typically has cooked turkey, spaghetti noodles, mushrooms and a creamy sauce.
Some include white wine in the same, some throw in peas or celery or onions, and some top theirs with a crisp bread crumb topping before baking.
I like to find a balance when making creamy casseroles like this Turkey Tetrazzini. Instead of using heavy cream and cream cheese, I use half and half and turkey broth to make my sauce. I choose high fibre pasta and throw in some peas for good measure.
I skip the mushrooms because we are just not big mushrooms fans here, but you can easily add them back in if that’s your thing.
How to Make Turkey Tetrazzini:
- Cook your turkey breast (or use leftover if you have some!): I like to do this in the slow cooker if I have time, or in a covered skillet with a bit of turkey broth if I want it ready a little sooner.
- Cook your pasta: you want to pull it out a minute or two before it’s al dente so that it won’t be mush when it continues to cook in the casserole
- Cook your sauce: I hear you. It’s a few different pots and pans but I promise you, homemade is better than any shortcut and you can make two and stick one in the freezer!
- Stir it all together, and throw in some peas or other vegetables if you want, sprinkle with some cheese.
- Cover and store it for later (more tips on that below), or pop it in the oven until golden and bubbly!
Variations on this Turkey Tetrazzini recipe:
- Switch up the vegetables: add in canned or sauteed mushrooms, roasted red peppers, finely chopped spinach, or something from your freezer vegetable stash
- Swap out the spaghetti for any other cut of pasta, cooked to the same doneness (a little less than al dente)
- Swap out the spaghetti for cooked rice or gluten-free pasta for a gluten-free option
How to make it ahead:
Store it in the refrigerator:
If you want to prep ahead to serve in a few days, you can prep up to the point of baking, then cover and refrigerate up to 4 days before baking.
When you’re ready to cook, just continue with the baking instructions as listed, but add additional cook time to compensate for the pasta being cold instead of hot.
Store it in the freezer:
If you want to prep this Turkey Tetrazzini ahead to serve later, you can prep up to the point of baking, then wrap tightly (I like to use a layer of plastic wrap and a layer of foil), and freeze up to 3 months.
To serve, either thaw overnight in the fridge before baking, or pop in the oven from frozen before starting the oven. This way, as your oven heats gradually, it will warm your pan gradually so there is no temperature shock.
To cook from frozen, you will need to add additional time — it will likely require a bake time of 60 minutes to heat through.
More turkey recipes you’ll love:
*This post is generously sponsored by Turkey Farmers of Canada and I was compensated for my time in creating this recipe. Thank you for supporting the brands that make The Recipe Rebel possible!
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- 1-1.5 lb boneless turkey breast filet
- 1.5 cups turkey or vegetable stock
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 medium onion finely diced
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 2 cups turkey stock
- 2 cups cream – 10%-18%
To Assemble Tetrazzini:
- 375 grams high fiber white spaghetti (about 13oz), cooked just to al dente
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup frozen peas
- Place turkey breast in a large skillet and pour in turkey stock. Season turkey with salt and pepper.
- Bring to a simmer over medium heat and reduce to medium low. Cover and simmer until cooked through (165 degrees F inside) and tender, about 40 minutes.
- Alternatively, you can place the ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours.
- Remove to a cutting board and chop or shred. Set aside.
- In a large skillet, melt butter.
- Add onion and saute over medium heat until onion is softened.
- Add garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper and cook 1 minute.
- Whisk in flour until completely absorbed by the butter.
- Add turkey stock and cream and whisk until smooth. Continue cooking over medium heat, whisking often, until thickened. Set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees if baking immediately.
- Place cooked pasta, shredded turkey, and peas in a 9×13" greased baking dish. Pour sauce over top and spread with a spatula over pasta so that it soaks down into the spaghetti.
- Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 20 minutes or until golden and bubbly (see post above for make ahead instructions).
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