Roast Turkey Breast (One Pan)
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
Easy Thanksgiving roast turkey breast recipe, homemade with simple ingredients in one pan. Loaded with garlic, herbs and butter. Baked until crispy and golden on the outside but moist, juicy and tender on the inside.
This recipe is the perfect Thanksgiving dinner choice for a smaller crowd or gathering. If you don’t have the number of guests or the time to roast a whole turkey, this recipe is just for you. This is also a much cheaper option that a whole turkey. It’s a win-win!
It is tender, juicy, flavorful and perfect for your next holiday party. Also, leftovers make a delicious sandwich for lunches throughout the week. In case you do have a huge crowd to feed, try this whole turkey recipe: How To Make Easy Thanksgiving Turkey Recipe (One Pan). It is super easy and comes together in one pan too!
How to cook a turkey breast in the oven? How to roast a turkey breast?
- Loosen skin– Start off by loosening the skin of the turkey breast.
- Spread butter– Spread half the butter under the skin, and the remainder on top of the breast.
- Bake it– Place turkey on a lined baking tray, and bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.
- Reduce temperature– Reduce to 350 degrees F and continue baking for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Baste often with turkey drippings and juices.
- Optional step– When you see the skin is nice and golden brown, cover the top with aluminum foil. This will protect it from becoming too brown and dry.
- Check Temperature- Prior to removing turkey from oven, insert a thermometer in the thickest part. If the internal temperature reads 165 degrees, it’s ready.
- Cover turkey– Cover with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes.
- Garnish– Add fresh parsley. Then slice and enjoy.
What is turkey breast temperature? (internal temperature to check it’s done)
The internal temperature in the thickest portion of the turkey should read 165 degrees F. I highly recommend using a meat thermometer when cooking any meats to ensure it’s safe and fully cooked. Check out the USDA site for safe internal temperatures for all kinds of meats.
How long to cook a turkey breast per pound?
This cooking time can vary, depending on how big or small the turkey breast is. Typically, it needs to be cooked for about 20 minutes per pound.
How much turkey breast do you need per person?
For an uncooked bone-in turkey, you will need about 1.25 pounds per person. If you use an uncooked boneless turkey breast, you’ll need about 3/4 pounds per person. That is usually the rule of thumb. However, you know your guests and their eating habits best and should adjust these quantities accordingly.
What sides to serve with baked turkey breast?
When it comes to Thanksgiving, it’s all about the sides because it truly takes the feast over the top.
Salads are a classic choice. Try any of these:
Stuffing is a classic side. Give these a spin:
This holiday just won’t be complete without casseroles. Try these:
- Green Bean Casserole (One Pan)
- Easy Sweet Potato Casserole (One Pan)
- Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole (One Pan)
All proteins taste even better with a side of gravy. Try these:
- Best Vegetarian Gravy (One Pot)
- Onion Gravy (One Pot)
- Mushroom Gravy (One Pot)
- Chicken Gravy (One Pot)
- Homemade Brown Gravy (One Pot).
Potatoes seem to be everyone’s favorite side dish. Try any or all of these:
- Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes (One Pan)
- Creamy Mashed Potatoes Recipe (One Pot)
- Mashed Sweet Potatoes (One Pot)
- Scalloped Sweet Potatoes (One Pan)
- Candied Sweet Potatoes (One Pot)
- Oven Roasted Potatoes (One Pan)
- Hasselback Sweet Potatoes (One Pan)
- Oven Roasted Sweet Potatoes (One Pan)
Carrots are very popular as a side, especially these three versions:
Roasted vegetables of any kind are always a hit. Give these a try:
- Oven Roasted Pumpkin (One Pan)
- Oven Roasted Vegetables (One Pan)
- Oven Roasted Cauliflower (One Pan)
- Oven Roasted Green Beans (One Pan)
- Oven Roasted Asparagus (One Pan)
Cranberries are in season and it would be a shame not to serve them in this feast. They are a hit with guests, when made in these two ways:
A side dish of soup will complete any meal. These are some popular seasonal classics:
- Curried Butternut Squash Soup (One Pot)
- Beet Borscht Soup (One Pot)
- Carrot Ginger Soup (One Pot)
- Sweet Potato Soup (One Pot)
Bread such as dinner rolls, sweet rolls, bread sticks, crescent rolls are also another option.
Smoked turkey breast– Use liquid smoke or use an actual meat smoker.
Skinless turkey breast– Roast the same way except no need to butter the skin since it is not there. You will need to keep a closer eye on this version since it can dry out quickly.
Stuffed turkey breast– Stuff the breast with cooked Thanksgiving Turkey Stuffing and then roast according to your roasting directions. You can even stuff with Basil Pesto Sauce (Blender) or Chimichurri Sauce (One Pot).
Bacon wrapped turkey breast– Prep turkey according to directions. Then weave bacon slices around the whole breast. Roast on a wire rack in the pan so that the bottom will crisp too.
Other herbs and spices– Try Jerk, Mexican, BBQ, or Cajun seasonings.
Garnish options– Garnish with fresh basil, parsley, or cilantro. Fresh herbs always look better as a garnish than dried herbs.
Other methods of cooking breast
Crockpot turkey breast/ slow cooker turkey breast- Prep according to recipe. Cook on low for 6 hours in an oval slow cooker. Then broil for 1-3 minutes to ensure crisp skin.
Grilled turkey breast– Grill over indirect heat for 30 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
Deep fried turkey breast– Heat oil to 350 degrees F. Carefully submerge the breast in the oil. Fry for 3 minutes per pound, plus an additional 5 minutes. Then remove turkey breast and let the oil drain for 10 minutes while also resting.
Tips and Techniques
Boneless turkey breast vs. Bone-in turkey breast– Bone-in will have more flavor and tends to be more moist than boneless. Either can be used, but it is up to your personal preference. I prefer bone-in.
Do you have to brine turkey breast? No, you do not have to brine the turkey for this recipe as long as you make sure to continually baste the turkey breast to retain moisture. However, if you want to try it out, be sure to use this delicious recipe for Turkey Brine Solution (One Pot). You should not brine for longer than 18-24 hours because that would make the meat very salty.
How to carve a turkey breast? Use a sharp long knife and slice down the breast bone along the center. Then cut under and along the rib bone. Then you can slice the breast to your desired thickness.
Baste the turkey– This is very important because it ensures that the breast doesn’t dry out while roasting. Make sure to baste the turkey continually while roasting. Set a timer for every few minutes.
Cover the turkey- This is an optional step, but one I prefer. Once the turkey is browned, cover it with foil in order to help retain moisture. It also prevents the top from over-browning and burning.
Let it rest– This allows the turkey to absorb the juices back into the meat so that each slice remains moist, and the juices don’t just run out when you slice it. This is a crucial step and should not be omitted!
What to do with leftovers? Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days. You can also use the meat for sandwiches, in pasta, on a salad, or in soup. I have used it in this Leftover Turkey Salad (One Pot) and these Shredded Turkey Tacos (One Pot) and even this Turkey Noodle Soup (One Pot).
One Pan Thanksgiving Turkey Breast
- 6 pound Turkey breast, Bone-in
- 1/3 cup Garlic herb butter, See note below on how to make this at home
- Start off by loosening the skin of the turkey breast.
- Spread half the butter under the skin, and spread the remainder on top of the breast.
- Place the turkey on a baking tray, lined with foil paper.
- Bake at 450 degrees F for about 20 minutes.
- Then, reduce temperature to 350 degrees F and continue baking for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Be sure baste often with turkey drippings and juices to prevent turkey from becoming dry.
- Optional step: When you see the skin has become nice and golden brown, cover the top with aluminum foil. This will protect it from becoming too brown and dry. I always do this because it also keeps the turkey very moist.
- Prior to removing turkey from oven, insert a thermometer in the thickest part. If the internal temperature reads 165 degrees, turkey is ready.
- Cover turkey with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes.
- The, garnish with fresh parsley, slice and enjoy.
- To make homemade garlic herb butter, mix together 1/3 cup softened unsalted butter, 1 tsp finely minced garlic, 1 tsp finely grated ginger, 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh sage leaves, 1 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves, 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh thyme leaves, 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley, salt to taste, pepper to taste.
- Read all my tips above.
- Tastes best when served immediately but leftovers can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Happy cooking everyone!