This easy oven-baked and roasted turkey breast is one of my favorite simple, no-fuss Thanksgiving dinner ideas. Every time, you will end up with a roast turkey breast that is consistently juicy, tasty, and well-seasoned. This recipe is perfect for smaller groups or families.
This is the easiest turkey breast to roast in the oven.
If you think that the juicy, flavorful turkey is only served on Thanksgiving, you’re wrong. Just as when you bake your favorite chicken, roasting turkey breasts cooks far faster than a full-sized whole bird. They are also very easy to prepare and season.
Additionally, when exactly the right amount of meat is utilized to feed a smaller family or party, there’s less wastage and leftovers.Based on my own experience, I like to make this easy recipe for roast turkey breast anytime of the day, but especially on the days when I have leftovers. You may make sandwiches, turkey tetrazzini, soup, and even quesadillas with any leftover turkey. Season the leftovers with garlic and aromatic, fresh herbs.
Choice of Turkey Breast with or without Bones
From the start, everyone has advantages and disadvantages of their own. When I cook, I prefer to utilize turkey breasts that still have the bones in them. If the turkey breast is cooked only to the desired doneness, the bone helps retain moisture, resulting in a more flavorful and juicy roast turkey breast. The outcome is well worth the effort, even though the cooking process could take a little longer and the carving might be a little more challenging.
When it comes to cooking a turkey breast, how long does it take?
The length of time it takes to cook will change depending on its weight as well as whether or not it has bones in it. For roasting turkey breast at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, the following are some general guidelines:
Whole Turkey Breast with Bones:
One and a half to one and a half hours for 4-6 pounds
One and a half to two and a half hours for 6–8 pounds
The Breast of a Boneless Turkey:
Two to three pounds: one to one and a half hours
One and a half to two and a half hours for 4-6 pounds
Using a meat thermometer, on the other hand, is the most trustworthy method for determining whether or not the meat is done. For the thickest region of the breast, the internal temperature should reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celsius).
A Guide to Cooking a Roasted Turkey Breast
At the beginning, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Aluminum foil should be used to line a large roasting pan or baking dish, and non-stick cooking spray should be used to lubricate the inside rack of the skillet. The rack should be positioned inside the roasting pan.
2. Mix the butter mixture: In a small bowl, combine the butter, garlic, thyme, sage, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Continue mixing until the mixture is completely combined.
Place the turkey breast on a broad cutting board and proceed with the preparation of the turkey breast. First, remove the skin from the breast flesh in a gentle manner, and then pat it dry using paper towels. One-third of the herb butter combination should be rubbed under the skin, and then the skin should be stretched on top of the butter. The remaining butter should be spread all over the turkey, including the insides and the bottom.
4. To roast the turkey, place the turkey breast that has been prepared on the baking rack that has been buttered. It is recommended to bake the turkey breast for roughly two and a half to three hours, although the exact duration of baking will vary depending on the size of the turkey breast. Every thirty to forty-five minutes, basting.
An optional step is to baste the turkey with ¼ cup of chicken stock until the drippings begin to gather. This step is only necessary if there are not a lot of pan drippings.
5. Cover the turkey: Once the skin has turned a golden brown color, cover the breasts with aluminum foil to keep them from burning.
6. take and allow to rest: When the internal temperature of the turkey reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit, as determined by an instant-read thermometer, take it from the oven and allow it to rest. Allow it to rest for fifteen minutes before carving it and presenting it with fresh orange slices, fresh sprigs of thyme, rosemary, and sage for garnish if you so wish.
Favorite Side Dishes that Accompany a Roasted Turkey Breast
There is a wide variety of mouthwatering side dishes that can be served alongside roasted turkey breast. French mashed potatoes, garlic butter-boiled potatoes, butternut squash, Brussels sprouts, and creamed corn are some of the very popular dishes. Whether you want to keep things low-carb by serving it with a side of creamy mashed cauliflower or make it more festive by serving it with a side of cranberry jam or relish.
Freezing and storing foods
Regarding storage, the turkey breast can be stored either whole or sliced; however, slicing it before putting it away makes it much simpler to prepare meals in the future. Wrap the mixture in plastic wrap or set it in an airtight container, and then place it in the refrigerator for up to three to four days.
Freezing: To freeze leftover turkey, store it in an airtight container and place it in the freezer for up to two to six months or until it reaches the desired temperature. Before reheating, allow the frozen turkey to defrost in the refrigerator for a full night.
Reheating: To prevent the turkey from becoming dry when being reheated in the microwave, cover it with either foil or a serving of broth. Bring it up to a minimum temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celsius) on the inside.
How long does it take to roast a turkey breast?
That’s right! When roasting a turkey breast, calculating the cooking time based on its weight is crucial to ensure it’s cooked perfectly. A general guideline is to estimate approximately 20 minutes of cooking time per pound of turkey breast at a temperature of 325°F (163°C).
However, it’s essential to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature, aiming for it to reach 165°F (74°C) in the thickest part of the breast. This temperature ensures the turkey is safe to eat while still retaining juiciness and tenderness.
Remember, these time estimations are guidelines, and factors like variations in oven performance, the shape of the turkey breast, and its starting temperature can affect the actual cooking time. Using a thermometer to verify doneness is the most reliable method to ensure a perfectly cooked roast turkey breast. Adjustments in cooking time may be necessary based on these factors for the best results.
Should I roast the turkey breast covered or uncovered?
Absolutely! Roasting the turkey breast uncovered allows for that sought-after crispy and golden skin. However, if you notice the skin getting too brown or crisping up faster than the meat is cooking, tenting the turkey breast with foil is an excellent strategy to prevent over-browning.
Creating a foil tent involves loosely covering the turkey breast with aluminum foil during part of the cooking time. This helps shield the skin from direct heat, slowing down the browning process while allowing the meat to continue cooking evenly.
Remember, tenting with foil should be done lightly and loosely to prevent the foil from touching the skin, as it might cause it to stick and affect the crispiness. Keep an eye on the turkey’s progress and use foil as needed to achieve a perfectly cooked and beautifully browned turkey breast without sacrificing that crispy skin. Adjusting the timing and foil coverage as necessary during roasting can help achieve the desired results.
How do I season a roast turkey breast?
Absolutely! Seasoning a turkey breast with a flavorful blend of herbs, spices, and aromatics is a fantastic way to enhance its taste. Here’s a breakdown of common seasonings and herbs that work wonderfully with roast turkey breast:
1. **Salt and Pepper:** These are essential for seasoning and enhancing the overall flavors.
2. **Thyme:** A versatile herb that complements poultry well, providing a slightly earthy and floral flavor.
3. **Rosemary:** Known for its pine-like aroma, rosemary adds a robust, savory flavor to the turkey.
4. **Sage:** Its warm, slightly peppery flavor pairs excellently with poultry, providing a traditional Thanksgiving taste.
5. **Garlic:** Whether fresh garlic cloves or garlic powder, it adds depth and richness to the turkey’s flavor profile.
6. **Onion Powder:** Offers a milder onion flavor compared to fresh onions, adding a subtle savory note to the seasoning.
You can create your seasoning blend by combining these herbs and spices, and adjusting the quantities according to your taste preferences. Rub the turkey breast generously with the seasoning mix, ensuring it covers the entire surface for even flavor distribution.
Remember, seasoning is versatile, so feel free to experiment with other herbs or spices that you enjoy to create a personalized and flavorful roast turkey breast that suits your taste buds.
Certainly! Here are FAQs related to cooking a roast turkey breast:
Should I brine the turkey breast?
Brining can enhance flavor and juiciness. You can soak the turkey breast in a saltwater solution (with herbs or other seasonings) for several hours before roasting, but it’s optional.
What temperature should the oven be set for roasting a turkey breast?
Preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C) for roasting turkey breast. This temperature ensures even cooking without drying out the meat.
Should I use a meat thermometer?
Yes, using a meat thermometer is highly recommended. It helps ensure the turkey breast reaches the safe internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) in the thickest part of the meat without overcooking.
Do I need to baste the turkey breast while roasting?
Basting occasionally with pan juices or melted butter can add flavor and moisture to the turkey breast. However, it’s not strictly necessary, and frequent opening of the oven can affect cooking time.
Can I stuff the turkey breast?
It’s not advisable to stuff a turkey breast due to its size. Stuffing can interfere with even cooking and food safety. Instead, consider making a separate stuffing or dressing.
How do I ensure a moist turkey breast?
To keep the turkey breast moist, avoid overcooking. Use a meat thermometer to monitor doneness and remove it from the oven when it reaches the recommended internal temperature.
How should I carve the roasted turkey breast?
Allow the turkey breast to rest for about 15-20 minutes before carving. Slice against the grain into desired portions for serving, ensuring even and uniform slices.
Preparing a roast turkey breast involves attention to detail, from seasoning to cooking time, ensuring a delicious centerpiece for your meal. Adjustments based on personal preferences can further enhance its flavor and texture.