Turkey Biriyani

It’s that time of year you’ll be bombarded with turkey leftover recipes.

Well this leftover turkey biriyani is one we’ve been making and adapting for years now. It’s got the comfort food box ticked, which is a necessity after a day of supping champagne (daaarling).

By just adding enough spice to suit everyone, this recipe may become a tradition in your family too!

I’ve made enough here for a cozy 3, but just double everything if you have a house full.


Leftover Turkey Biriyani Recipe.


My favourite bit is the blacked bottom – so intense in flavour – YUM!


Leftover Turkey Biriyani. Festive Recipe.


Leftover Turkey Biriyani. Christmas Recipe.


Leftover Turkey Biriyani. A Recipe To Use Up Christmas Turkey.


How to make leftover turkey biriyani


  • Groundnut oil
  • 3 medium onions
  • 40g cashew nuts
  • 1 – 2 tbsp Veeraswamy Medium Moglai curry paste
  • 200g cooked turkey
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 125g basmati rice
  • 2 cardamons, lightly crushed
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 2 cloves
  • pinch of saffron strands
  • a few drops of Rose water.


Leftover Turkey Biriyani Christmas Recipe.


Leftover Turkey Biriyani. Easy Christmas Recipe.



Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a heavy bottomed pan or casserole dish.

Add 1 of your chopped up onions and fry on a medium heat until it starts to caramelise.

Add the cashew nuts and allow them to brown a little too.


Cooking Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Once done, remove and place onto a side dish for later.


How To Cook Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Now add 2 tbsp of groundnut oil into your pan and the remaining onions along with the curry paste.

Add 1 tbsp for a mild curry, add 2 tbsp for medium.


How To Cook Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Stir it up and cook low and slow for 10 minutes.


A Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Add the turkey and stir fry for a few minutes then add the tomatoes.

Bring to a simmer, cover and leave to gently bubble for 15 minutes.


Simple Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Now it’s time to make the rice.

Put 1 tbsp of oil into another pan on medium – low heat, and add your spices (except the saffron).

Switch the kettle on – you’ll need the boiling water soon.


Spices For Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Rinse the rice in a sieve then add to the pan.

Stir-fry for 2 – 3 minutes.


Leftover Biriyani Recipe. Preparing The Rice.


Then add 300g of boiling water, season, stir and add a lid. The rice will take 10 – 12 minutes to cook.


Making The Rice For Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Steep the pinch of saffron in a few drops of rose water.

Add a dash of hot water to help it along.


Adding Flavour To A Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Once the rice has absorbed the water the Biriyani is ready to be placed in it’s layers.


Leftover Turkey Biriyani. Method.


First add 1/3 of the onion cashew mix onto the turkey curry sauce.


Layering A Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Then add 1/2 of the rice (removing the cinnamon/cloves/cardamons as you spot them).


How To Prepare A Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Sprinkle a little of the saffron rosewater over the top and another 1/3 of the onions and cashews.


Leftover Turkey Biriyani. Step By Step Recipe.


Add another layer of rice (the remaining half) and top off with the last 1/3 of onion and cashews. Sprinkle with more saffron rosewater.


Delicious Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Place the lid back on and sit it over a low heat for 10 minutes.

That’s it, it’s ready to share.


Best Leftover Turkey Biriyani Recipe.


Best Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Leftover turkey biriyani – more exciting and satisfying than a turkey sandwich!


Homemade Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


Cheers everyone x


Best Homemade Leftover Turkey Biriyani.


If you like this you might also enjoy my Mince pie ice-cream – it uses up the leftover mince-pies and is a new favourite in my house!

Let’s Stay in touch!


FACEBOOK          |          INSTAGRAM           |           PINTEREST           |           TWITTER




  1. Andrew
    December 2, 2015 / 12:43 pm

    I want some now! Looks great! But I think there is s debate to be had about Turkey Sandwiches…..? 🙂

    • Maria Kelly
      December 2, 2015 / 2:16 pm

      The size of turkey we get there’s always more for turkey sandwiches…! xx