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Turkey Salad

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Are you looking for a delicious and easy way to use up leftover turkey? Our Turkey Salad recipe is the perfect blend of flavors and textures, combining tender turkey with a mix of fresh and tangy ingredients. It’s a versatile dish that can be enjoyed as a sandwich filler or as a standalone salad. Ideal for a quick lunch or a light dinner, this recipe is a must-try for turkey lovers.

A turkey salad sandwich on white bread with lettuce and red radishes.

I roast a turkey a few times a year, not just for Thanksgiving and I love using the leftovers for fast and easy meals. This creamy turkey salad is similar to our old fashioned ham salad that I posted a few days ago and it makes the best sandwiches. 

Here is Why This Turkey Salad Recipe Works

  • Efficient Use of Leftovers: This recipe transforms your leftover turkey into a completely new and delicious meal.
  • Balance of Flavors and Textures: The combination of creamy yogurt and mayonnaise, crisp apples and celery, and the tanginess of capers and vinegar creates a balanced flavor.
  • Customizable: Easily adaptable to your taste preferences with simple ingredient adjustments.
  • Health-Conscious Choice: A lighter alternative to traditional heavy salads, using yogurt as a base.

Turkey Salad Ingredients

Here is a list of the ingredients you will need for this recipe. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details.

  • Meat: Turkey
  • Produce: Celery, Green apple, Scallions, Parsley, Tarragon
  • Pantry: Red wine vinegar, Ground black pepper, Salt
  • Condiments: Yogurt, Mayonnaise, Dijon mustard
  • Specialty Items: Capers
Ingredients used to make turkey salad.

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Turkey: Chicken can be used instead of turkey.
  • Yogurt: Sour cream or a dairy-free alternative.
  • Green Apple: Pears or grapes for a sweet twist.
  • Red Wine Vinegar: Lemon juice or apple cider vinegar for a different acidic component.

How to Make the Salad

Here is a brief overview to get an idea of what to expect with the chopped salad recipe. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details.

  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. Toss to blend everything together uniformly.
  3. Adjust seasoning with additional salt and pepper, if needed.
  4. Add extra yogurt or mayonnaise to achieve desired creaminess.

Mixing ingredients in a bowl for minced turkey salad spread.

Variations

Dive into these recipes for a refreshing change to your turkey salad routine. Here are just a few ideas but this recipe is so easy to change up. Even just adding a chopped pickle, swapping out the herbs, or adding some crispy bacon can change things up. 

Smoked Turkey Delight

Substitute the cooked turkey with the same amount of finely diced smoked turkey. Add ¼ cup of diced roasted red peppers to complement the smoky flavor. Replace tarragon with smoked paprika (1 teaspoon) to enhance the smoky profile.

Crunchy Nut and Grape Turkey Salad

Along with the original ingredients, add ½ cup of halved seedless grapes and ¼ cup of chopped walnuts or pecans. Mix 1 teaspoon of honey into the yogurt-mayonnaise blend for a hint of sweetness.

Mediterranean-Inspired Turkey Salad

Add ¼ cup of chopped Kalamata olives and ¼ cup of crumbled feta cheese. Substitute capers with diced sun-dried tomatoes for a Mediterranean touch. Use fresh basil instead of tarragon and squeeze lemon juice for brightness.

Tips for Success

  • Adjust the amount of yogurt and mayonnaise to suit your texture preference.
  • Let the salad chill for an hour before serving to allow the flavors to meld.
  • Use fresh herbs and crisp apples for the best flavor. 
  • Ensure that the celery, green apple, and scallions are finely chopped for a more uniform texture in your Turkey Salad. If you want to larger cubes of turkey meat that works too. 
Chopped turkey salad in a bowl next to crackers.

Serving Suggestions

Enjoy this versatile turkey salad in various ways. Serve it on a bed of lettuce or mixed in with our radicchio salad for a light meal.

I especially love it as a filling for sandwiches and wraps. It also works well as a cracker spread.

Storage

Store the turkey salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It should stay fresh for up to 3 days. Stir well before serving again.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make this recipe ahead of time?

Yes, preparing it a day in advance allows the flavors to develop more.

What type of turkey is best for this recipe?

Any part of a cooked turkey (roast, smoked, or however you like to cook it). I like to use the turkey breast meat

Turkey chopped salad in lettuce cups.

This Turkey Salad recipe is not only a wonderful way to repurpose leftover turkey, but it’s also a delightful dish on its own. With its perfect balance of flavors and textures, it’s a great addition to any meal. Whether you’re looking for a quick lunch or a healthy dinner option, this turkey salad is sure to impress. 

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Turkey salad sandwich on white bread.

Turkey Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Transform your leftover turkey into something special with this Reduced Fat Turkey Salad. It blends creamy yogurt with a touch of mayonnaise for a lighter sandwich filling or a stand-alone meal atop a bed of greens.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups finely diced cooked turkey
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • ½ cup yogurt
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ green apple, diced
  • ¼ cup drained capers, diced
  • 2 to 3 scallions (green onions), chopped
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Add all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and toss to blend. 
  2. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Stir in additional yogurt or mayonnaise if desired. 
  3. Serve as a sandwich filling or on lettuce greens as a salad. 

Notes

  • The balance of yogurt and mayonnaise can be adjusted based on your preference for creaminess. Start with the suggested amounts and add more if you desire a creamier texture.
  • If fresh herbs aren't available, you can use dried herbs. The general guideline is to use half the amount if you use dried herbs. 
  • This salad is versatile – great as a filling for sandwiches or wraps, or served on a bed of lettuce or mixed greens for a light and healthy salad.
  • The flavors often meld and intensify when refrigerated overnight. Just give it a good stir before serving.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1/4 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 131Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 47mgSodium: 319mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 13g

Nutrition information is a guideline only. It is calculated automatically by third-party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

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Dahn Boquist

Dahn is a retired nurse, recipe creator, home cook, baker, and self-proclaimed foodie. She loves creating in the kitchen and cooking for family and friends. She lives in Washington State with her husband and dog. When she isn't cooking or baking, you can usually find her spending time with her grandson or exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

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angiesrecipes

Wednesday 3rd of January 2024

A perfectly healthy and delicious recipe to use up the leftover!

Dahn Boquist

Wednesday 3rd of January 2024

Yes indeed! Thanks Angie.

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