Turkey {or Chicken} and Brown Rice Soup {Instant Pot or Stovetop}

This turkey and brown rice soup (with kale and Parmesan cheese!) is simple, healthy, and delicious! Bonus: you can easily sub in chicken OR ground turkey. Instant Pot and stovetop instructions included!

Turkey {or Chicken} Brown Rice Soup

You guys?? How was Thanksgiving?

If you are like me, you might have a bit of a Thanksgiving hangover this Monday morning.

I’m excited to get back to a normal weekly routine but kind of bummed out that the holiday is over with no energy to really want to do anything.

Hopefully this easy, delicious recipe will get us revved up for the week ahead.

If you have leftover turkey, this turkey and brown rice soup is a no-brainer.

Not only is it healthy and super tasty, but it is so easy (Instant Pot AND stovetop directions included!).

Turkey {or Chicken} Brown Rice Soup

We always joke/talk in our family about “eating our colors” (you may remember that from this older post on How to Raise Adventurous Eaters).

You can imagine my kids’ delight when this appeared on the table. Colors everywhere!

Of course the excitement quickly ended when one of my kale-averse children recognized his nemesis in the soup.

But he powered through (after dousing his soup with a pound of Parmesan cheese), and I’m happy to report he actually lived through the experience.

Turkey {or Chicken} Brown Rice Soup

This soup is really, really adaptable.

If you want to sub in white rice for the brown, no problem.

I’d use the same amount but cut the IP cooking time down to 5 minutes and the stovetop time to, probably, 15 minutes.

You can use cooked chicken (rotisserie works great here) for the cooked turkey OR use lean ground turkey (and probably even beef).

And I bet spinach would make a great sub for the kale.

The simple, delicious flavor lies in simmering/pressure cooking the broth and tomatoes with the vegetables and simple seasonings.

Turkey {or Chicken} Brown Rice Soup

It is definitely one of those soups where the whole is greater than the sum of it’s parts.

Loaded with wholesome brown rice, vegetables, and tender turkey, it is hearty and filling and perfect for the after-holiday decadence I (we?) indulged in.

A good-for-you meal like this turkey and brown rice soup almost makes Mondays exciting.

Almost.

At the very least, it will make your belly (and crazy weeknight schedule) warm and happy.

Turkey {or Chicken} Brown Rice Soup

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Turkey {or Chicken} and Brown Rice Soup

4.5
4.5 / 5 (9 Reviews)
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Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup (about 4 ounces) chopped onion or shallot
  • 1 cup (about 6-8 ounces) diced carrots (about 2-3 large carrots)
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup (about 4 ounces) diced celery (about 3 stalks)
  • 6 cups chicken broth (I use low-sodium)
  • 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup (about 3.5 to 5.5 ounces) long grain, jasmine or basmati brown rice
  • 2 teaspoons herbs de Provence (see note for a substitution)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4-5 cups chopped kale (about 3-4 ounces)
  • 3 cups cooked, chopped turkey or chicken (about 12 ounces)
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving

Directions:

  1. For the Instant Pot, using the saute function, heat the olive oil. Add the onions, carrots, and celery. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes, until the vegetables start to soften. Add the chicken broth, crushed tomatoes, rice, herbs de provence, salt and pepper. Secure the lid. Select manual and dial up or down to 20 minutes.
  2. When finished cooking, quick release the pressure (if liquid spurts through the valve, close the pressure valve, wait 10 minutes and try again). Open the lid and stir in the kale and turkey. Heat through (either using the Saute function or just letting the residual heat of the soup work it’s magic; simmer longer for more tender kale). Season to taste with additional salt and pepper, if needed. Serve each serving of soup with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, if desired.
  3. For the stove top, heat the olive oil in a 5-quart or larger saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes, until the vegetables start to soften. Add the chicken broth, crushed tomatoes, rice, herbs de provence, salt and pepper.
  4. Bring the mixture to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 40-45 minutes, stirring every once in a while, until the rice is tender. Uncover the pot and stir in the kale and turkey. Heat through (simmer longer for more tender kale). Season to taste with additional salt and pepper, if needed. Serve each serving of soup with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Notes:

This soup is pretty adaptable – you can use already cooked brown rice, if you have it. Decrease the broth to 4 cups and add the rice at the end with the kale and turkey to heat through (I find the flavor is better if using uncooked rice as it absorbs all the flavors while simmering). You can also use ground turkey in place of the cooked turkey or chicken. Brown it in the first step with the onions and vegetables; drain any grease, and then proceed with the recipe (or you can brown it before starting the soup and reserve it until the end to stir in with the kale and turkey). 

Herbs de Provence is a fragrant mixture of herbs usually made up of oregano, thyme, basil, marjoram, lavender, savory, sage, and rosemary (sometimes bay leaves, too). If you don’t have it – and you don’t have all of the above spices on hand – I would simplify and use an Italian seasoning blend or just a mix of oregano, basil, thyme and a pinch of sage if you have it. The flavor will be a bit different, but still delicious. 

 

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Recipe Source: inspired by this recipe at Food Network (I changed most of the amounts and some specific ingredients and converted it to an Instant Pot recipe)