Air-Fryer Turkey Croquettes Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Turkey Croquettes

Total Time
Prep: 20 min. Cook: 10 min./batch
These turkey croquettes use up leftover turkey and mashed potatoes, but that’s not all. They’re breaded and air-fried to a golden brown, making them the best next-day meal since gobbler sandwiches.

Updated: Nov. 20, 2023

You’ll definitely want to add these turkey croquettes to your post-Thanksgiving menu lineup. Made with mashed potatoes, leftover turkey (our herb-roasted turkey recipe works great), herbs, and cheese, the bite-sized patties are breaded then air-fried to crispy goodness. You can serve them as an entree alongside a salad, or as a snack with your favorite dipping sauce, like sour cream, classic turkey gravy or applesauce.

What is a croquette?

A croquette is basically a fried snack made with a meat or vegetable filling, bound with mashed potatoes or bechamel, and coated in bread crumbs and deep-fried. What’s not to love, right?

Croquettes take many forms, but no matter the style, they’re bound to be delicious. In Spain or South America, you might see croquettes made with chicken, cod or other proteins. Other popular fillings for croquettes made around the world can include beef, pork, shrimp or sausage.

Our turkey croquette recipe takes the best of Thanksgiving leftovers and turns them into a delicious handheld snack. And in our version, we skip the deep fryer and opt for the handy air fryer to deliver perfectly golden croquettes.

Ingredients for Turkey Croquettes

  • Mashed potatoes: The best potatoes to use for this recipe are ones already cooked, buttered, seasoned and cooled (try our creamy mashed potatoes). If you don’t have any on hand, you can use instant mashed potatoes.
  • Cheese: Swiss and Parmesan cheeses add nutty, umami flavors to the croquette filling. If you’re grating the cheeses yourself, use the finest holes for the Parmesan.
  • Herbs: Either fresh or dried herbs will work in this recipe. We call for rosemary and sage, but you can add others seasonal herbs like thyme or parsley.
  • Cooked turkey: Our turkey croquettes recipe calls for a combination of white and dark meat chopped into small pieces. You can pulse the meat a few times in the food processor to get a smoother texture, but you don’t want a paste.
  • Bread crumbs: Panko bread crumbs add that great crunch factor you want in a croquette. If you don’t have, homemade bread crumbs or any other variety works, too.


Step 1: Make and shape the croquette mixture

Preheat your air fryer to 350°F. In a large bowl, combine the mashed potatoes, cheeses, shallot, rosemary, sage, salt and pepper. Next, stir in the turkey. Combine everything together lightly but thoroughly. Shape the mixture into twelve 1-inch-thick patties, and set aside.

Editor’s Tip: Put the shaped patties in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or more. This will help the croquettes retain their shape while cooking.

Step 2: Create your dipping station

In a shallow bowl, whisk together the egg and water. Place bread crumbs in another shallow bowl. Dip the croquettes in the egg mixture, then in the bread crumbs. Give each side a few pats to help the coating adhere.

Step 3: Air-fry the croquettes

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Working in batches, place the croquettes in a single layer on the greased tray in your air-fryer basket, then spritz the croquettes with cooking spray. Cook until golden brown, four to five minutes. Flip the croquettes over, and spritz with cooking spray. Cook until golden brown, another four to five minutes. Serve turkey croquettes with sour cream or your favorite dipping sauce or gravy.

Recipe Variations

  • Skip the air fryer: You can make our turkey croquette recipe in a deep fryer or electric skillet or on the stovetop. To make on the stovetop, follow the steps to prepare the croquettes. Then, in a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add half the croquettes, and cook four to five minutes per side or until browned. Remove the patties, and keep them warm while cooking the remaining croquettes. You can also bake them on a lined baking sheet in a 400° oven for 10 to 15 minutes, until golden brown.
  • Use a different meat: Roasted or rotisserie chicken can easily work instead of turkey for these croquettes. You can also use ground turkey if you don’t want to wait until you have Thanksgiving leftovers. Just cook the meat before mixing with the other ingredients.
  • Change the herbs: Our recipe calls for fresh or dried rosemary and sage, but you can also substitute in thyme and parsley, or a combination of all. You can add other savory spices, too, like onion powder or garlic powder.

How to Store Turkey Croquettes

If you have leftovers, cool the croquettes completely, then store them in an airtight container for up to three days in the refrigerator.

How to Freeze Turkey Croquettes

Freeze cooled turkey croquettes in freezer-safe containers, separating layers with waxed paper. To reheat, put the croquettes (refrigerated or frozen) on a baking sheet, and bake in a preheated 325° oven until heated through.

Turkey Croquettes Tips

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How do you keep turkey croquettes from falling apart?

Chill the croquettes for at least 30 minutes before dipping and dredging in bread crumbs. That allows the mixture to firm up a bit, which will help them keep their shape while cooking.

What do you serve with turkey croquettes?

Since turkey croquettes are essentially Thanksgiving dinner in ball form, a few drizzles of gravy go well here. Add some herbs or spices to the sour cream to bring out more flavor. Or serve with any other favorite dipping sauce—even a nice chunky applesauce works! You can treat them as an entree, and plate them with green vegetables like roasted asparagus or green beans to make a complete meal.

Air-Fryer Turkey Croquettes

Prep Time 20 min
Cook Time 10 min
Yield 6 servings.


  • 2 cups mashed potatoes (with added milk and butter)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh sage or 1/4 teaspoon dried sage leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 cups finely chopped cooked turkey
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1-1/4 cups panko bread crumbs
  • Butter-flavored cooking spray
  • Sour cream, optional


  1. Preheat air fryer to 350°. In a large bowl, combine mashed potatoes, cheeses, shallot, rosemary, sage, salt and pepper. Stir in turkey, mixing lightly but thoroughly. Shape into twelve 1-in.-thick patties.
  2. In a shallow bowl, whisk egg and water. Place bread crumbs in another shallow bowl. Dip croquettes in egg mixture, then in bread crumbs, patting to help coating adhere.
  3. Working in batches, place croquettes in a single layer on greased tray in air-fryer basket; spritz with cooking spray. Cook until golden brown, 4-5 minutes. Turn; spritz with cooking spray. Cook until golden brown; 4-5 minutes. If desired, serve with sour cream.

Nutrition Facts

2 croquettes: 322 calories, 12g fat (6g saturated fat), 124mg cholesterol, 673mg sodium, 22g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 2g fiber), 29g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 1-1/2 starch, 1 fat.