Leftover Turkey Vodka Marinara

pasta 009I had so much turkey left over after Thanksgiving that I froze a great deal of it for use in future recipes.

Of all my leftover turkey cooking adventures, this simple recipe is my favorite one so far.

If you managed to escape Thanksgiving and Christmas without mountains of leftover turkey, you can use chicken or vegetables instead.

This is one of those sauces that actually tastes much better after sitting in the fridge overnight.


1 jar of store-bought marinara or 1 quart homemade marinara
½ cup of heavy cream
1 cup of vodka
2 cups cooked white-meat turkey, cut in bite-sized pieces
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Optional additional ingredients:
½ cup chopped zucchini
¼ white onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
1 tbs olive oil

(If you like a zesty, chunky sauce — saute the optional ingredients in a pan and incorporate the cooked mixture into your marinara for added flavor and texture.)


Take out the cream, so that it will be room temperature when you use it. In a large skillet, simmer the marinara sauce and vodka over low heat for about 10 minutes.

Then stir in the cream and cook on low heat until the mixture is heated completely. Now stir in the cheese until it melts and mixes into the sauce. Next add your turkey or chicken pieces (they should be thawed if they were frozen).

Raise heat to medium heat and cook for about 5-10 more minutes. Turkey should be tender and have soaked in some of the flavor of the marinara.

Serve over pasta, penne (pictured) recommended.

More recipes for cooking with booze

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