Southwestern Turkey Casserole

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Southwest
Keyword: casserole, chiles, leftover turkey, turkey
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 455kcal
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  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper (can use black pepper too)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • pinch cayenne optional
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth or turkey stock
  • 1/2 cup milk or half and half
  • 2 roasted bell peppers peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup fire roasted chiles (I used Hatch chiles) peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1 14 ounce can petite diced tomatoes drained
  • 3 cups leftover cooked turkey meat diced (can also substitute chicken or ham)
  • 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese divided, grated
  • 1 cups colby jack grated (can use monterey jack, colby jack or pepper jack)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro chopped
  • 1 pound fusilli pasta cooked to al dente. (can also use elbow, penne or other short tubular pasta)


  • 2 slices sourdough or other sturdy bread
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/3 cup cilantro



  • Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray a large casserole dish (lasagna pan sized or two smaller casseroles 8x10) with vegetable spray and set aside.
  • In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium high heat. Add the chopped onions and cook for 3-5 minutes or until tender and translucent. Add the cumin, chili powder, mustard powder, kosher salt, white pepper and cayenne (if using). Stir well to combine. Sprinkle the flour over the spice blend and stir constantly for one minute until the paste is thick, bubbly and aromatic.
  • Whisk in the chicken broth a little at a time until the sauce is smooth and creamy. Whisk in the half and half and bring the sauce to a simmer. Cook for one minute stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
  • Add the chopped bell peppers, chiles, tomatoes, chopped cooked turkey and cilantro to the sauce and stir well to combine.
  • Cook the pasta in a large stock pot according to package directions until it reaches al dente. Drain the pasta well and return it to the stock pot. Pour the turkey mixture over the pasta and toss to combine.
  • Stir in one cup of the cheddar cheese and the Colby Jack cheese and pour the turkey casserole blend into the prepared baking dishes.


  • Remove crusts from bread and transfer to a mini prep food processor. Add the butter and cilantro and pulse until breadcrumbs are finely chopped.


  • Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the casserole and bake for 20 minutes or until warmed and bubbly. Serve.


Calories: 455kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 68mg | Sodium: 605mg | Potassium: 339mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 775IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 257mg | Iron: 2mg