Can You Eat the Turkey Neck? 3 Southern-Style Recipes

turkey neckBelieve it or not, there is so much more to turkey than just Thanksgiving. Of course, we love the bird as the star of a holiday meal, but if that’s the only time you’re eating it, you’re missing out.

One of the reasons people don’t often eat turkey throughout the year is due to its cost. Buying a whole turkey can be on the more expensive side, but if you know how to use the entire product in your cooking, it actually becomes a great value.

Turkey neck is an often overlooked part of the bird, but with the right recipes, you can make it delicious. Below, we’ve rounded up three southern-style recipes for turkey neck so you can make the most out of this ingredient.

1. Turkey Neck Skillet with Vegetables

If you grew up eating chicken necks, you should consider substituting turkey neck in your favorite recipes. They have a similar flavor and a lot more meat, so you can stretch a dish even further and feed more mouths.

If you don’t have experience with cooking or eating this part of the animal, now is a great time try something new.

This turkey neck skillet with vegetables, adapted from the website Mom’s Dish, is a simple, one skillet meal. It will satisfy your family or friends and is easy enough for a weeknight.



  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Cut turkey necks into large pieces that will fit inside your selected, oven-safe skillet
  3. Cut onions in half, and slice into large half-moon shapes
  4. Clean and peel carrots, then cut into half-inch pieces
  5. Heat oil in a skillet over high heat
  6. Add turkey neck pieces and cook until browned all over
  7. Remove turkey necks from skillet and set aside
  8. Add onions and carrots to the same skillet and cook until softened and just browned
  9. Return turkey necks to skillet with vegetables and season with salt. Add one cup of water to the skillet.
  10. Place skillet in oven and cook for an hour and a half, or until turkey neck meat is falling off the bone
  11. Serve warm, with a side of rice or potatoes

2. Giblet Gravy with Turkey Neck

Gravy of any kind is a classic southern dish because it makes anything you serve with it taste even more delicious. This gravy from Paula Deen, the undisputed queen of southern cooking, makes use of turkey necks and other often underused turkey parts.

This gravy makes a delicious accompaniment to deep-fried turkey, and would be great served with stuffing or roasted vegetables.



  1. Chop the cooked giblets and the cooked meat removed from the turkey neck into small pieces
  2. In a small saucepot, bring the turkey stock or broth (or chicken if using) to a boil
  3. To the boiling stock, add the giblets and neck meat, the bouillon cubes, the poultry seasoning and the raw stuffing
  4. In a separate bowl, mix together the cornstarch and water to create a cornstarch slurry
  5. Add the slurry to the boiling stock mixture, stirring constantly
  6. Reduce the heat and continue to cook the stock mixture for two to three minutes
  7. Add the salt and pepper to taste, then add the sliced boiled egg
  8. Serve warm.

3. Fried Turkey Necks

The true southern way to cook anything is to fry it, and that is definitely true of turkey. Fried foods call to mind summer picnics or lazy weekends. They are great for feeding a crowd and make a gathering of friends and family even more festive.

With a recipe as delicious as these fried turkey necks, adapted from the website Mahogany Cooks, you want to make sure it comes out perfectly every time. Having the right equipment is the key to making sure your recipe is a success. Turkey frying pots  and a top-quality outdoor turkey deep fryer make it easy to fry different parts of the turkey all year round.



  1. Rinse turkey neck pieces and cut them in half length-wise
  2. Season them with creole seasoning and add them to a pot of cold water
  3. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cook for an hour to an hour and a half, until necks are tender
  4. Drain turkey necks and let cool
  5. Meanwhile, season all-purpose flour with salt and pepper to taste
  6. When turkey necks are completely cool, coat in flour fixture
  7. Add frying oil to your turkey frying pot and bring oil to heat
  8. Fry turkey necks in hot oil on all sides until golden brown
  9. Serve warm with your favorite side dishes.

Ready to Start Cooking Turkey Like Never Before?

Recipes like these are a great way to get started if you want to branch out and experiment with cooking turkey neck. There are plenty more like them as well, which will make you comfortable with cooking this part of the turkey. The more you try, the easier it will be to incorporate this into your cooking rotation.

The bottom line is, turkey is good for much more than just Thanksgiving dinner. The meat is flavorful, and there are lots of different methods for cooking it. From roasting to frying, cooking turkey on any night of the year should be easy.

If you want to experiment with different ways to cook turkey, or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at any time. And of course, if you need a turkey fryer, check out the following for help in choosing the one for you:

Indoor Turkey Fryers

Outdoor Turkey Fryers

Tags: cooking turkey neck, turkey giblet, turkey neck, turkey neck gravy, turkey neck recipe, turkey necks

Categorised in: Recipes and How To

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