The Best Oven Roasted Turkey Breast Recipe
Nov 02, 2023
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The Best Oven Roasted Turkey Breast Recipe – delicious juicy roasted turkey breast perfect for Thanksgiving dinner for two to four guests!
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Baked Turkey Breast
Oven Roasted Turkey Breast is one of the easiest dishes to make for Thanksgiving – it is smaller so it cooks faster than an entire turkey, plus it’s the perfect amount of turkey for 2-3 guests.
This baked turkey breast is the perfect dishes to make for a 2 person Thanksgiving, without committing to leftovers for ages.
If you’re hosting a small dinner or Thanksgiving, this easy turkey breast is the perfect recipe – and all you need is a couple of basic ingredients, an oven, a baking sheet or roasting pan, and and a wire rack! I hope you love this juicy, never-dry baked turkey breast as much as I do!
How To Bake Turkey Breast
To make this recipe, we will need the following ingredients:
- 1 7lb. bone-in turkey breast: The turkey breast is the main ingredient, providing lean and tender meat that’s the centerpiece of the dish. Boneless works fine too, even the ones pre-netted!
- 1 stick butter: Butter adds richness, moisture, and a creamy flavor to the turkey, helping to keep it juicy during roasting.
- 1 tbsp Italian Herbs Blend: The Italian herbs blend, which may include herbs like oregano, basil, rosemary, thyme, and marjoram, imparts a savory and aromatic profile to the turkey, enhancing its taste.
- 1 tsp pink sea salt: Sea salt is used to season the turkey, enhancing its flavor and helping to achieve a nicely seasoned crust.
- 1 tsp fresh cracked pepper: Freshly cracked black pepper adds a hint of spiciness and depth to the turkey’s taste.
- 2 cups chicken broth: Chicken broth serves as a flavorful liquid for basting and roasting the turkey, keeping it moist and infusing it with savory notes.
- 1 medium onion chopped into large slices: Chopped onions can be used as aromatics to add a sweet and savory element to the turkey and its pan juices.
- 4 garlic cloves: Garlic cloves provide a pungent and aromatic flavor that complements the herbs and adds complexity to the turkey.
- 2 sprigs Thyme: Fresh thyme sprigs infuse the turkey with a fragrant herbal aroma and a mild, earthy flavor.
- 1 orange or lemon, sliced thin: Thin slices of citrus, like orange or lemon, add a bright and zesty citrusy note to the turkey while also contributing to the turkey’s moisture.
Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, we will use the following process:
- Prep. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pat turkey dry with paper towels. Generously rub turkey breast with softened butter – rub butter all around turkey, and carefully lift up skin to rub butter under turkey skin, too. If not boneless, stuff turkey breast cavity with aromatics. If boneless and netted, be sure to get butter all over turkey.
- Roast. Add chicken stock to the bottom of roasting pan. Coat turkey breast with herbs and spices. Place turkey on metal rack in roasting pan or over a baking sheet. Tent turkey loosely with foil for first 30 minutes of roasting time. Roast in the preheated oven for 1 hour; baste turkey breast with remaining butter mixture occasionally. Roast around 1-1 1/2 hours, until the juices run clear and an instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast, not touching bone, reads 165 degrees.
- Tent and serve. Tent with foil for at least 10 minutes before carving. Enjoy!
Tips To Perfect Roasted Turkey Breast & FAQs
Butter Turkey Breast. Getting a delicious, crispy, golden brown crunch on a turkey breast is essential for tons of rich, meaty flavor – and adding butter to the uncooked turkey is a great way to help get your turkey a fabulous golden brown. I try to use half a stick of butter around the turkey breast – rub it all over AND under the turkey skin – and half of the butter spread across the top of the turkey again halfway through cooking, when you take the foil tent off to help it get golden brown. This will help your turkey crisp up for a perfect delicious crunchy skin!
Brine Turkey Breast. Brining Turkey helps to lock in the turkey’s moisture so it doesn’t dry out during baking time – and helps to eliminate the need for basting as your turkey cooks.
A simple brine is all you need to make your turkey breast a knockout – try my delicious easy turkey brine recipe below:
Easy Turkey Brine Recipe: This easy turkey brine is perfect for an entire turkey – or just a turkey breast – and is easy to whip up. Place brine and turkey in a plastic bag and refrigerate until ready to cook. Do not use turkey brine after raw turkey has been in it – always discard excess.
Easy Turkey Brine Ingredients:
- 1 cup kosher salt
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1 gallon vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 1 1/2 teaspoons allspice berries
- 1 1/2 teaspoons rosemary
- 2 teaspoons savory
- 1 gallon ice cubes
Easy Turkey Brine Instructions:
- Bring all ingredients, except ice to a boil.
- After you reach a rolling boil, turn off heat and let cool.
- Combine cooled brine with ice inside a large bag in a beverage cooler, stock pot, or other large container with a tight fitting lid.
- Submerge turkey and seal container.
- Brine for at least 12 hours and up to 3 days – be sure to keep turkey cold with ice as it brines.
How To Make Turkey for Two People. If you want to make an easy turkey dinner for two people, this turkey breast recipe is perfect for Thanksgiving – you will have enough for two diners, plus some extras for leftover sandwiches. This baked turkey breast recipe serves 6 people one serving – but I think it is the perfect amount for a group of 2-4 people on Thanksgiving when we tend to eat a bit more than one serving!
Look for 7 pounds and under. Pick a turkey breast of around 7 pounds for up to 6 servings cooked turkey breast meat.
Make your own turkey gravy. If you’re looking for another delicious and super easy turkey breast recipe that you will love, check out my Slow Cooker Turkey Breast in Gravy Recipe! It cooks right in gravy in your slow cooker for no-fail, never-dry turkey the whole family loves!
Thaw Properly: If using a frozen turkey breast, make sure to thaw it properly in the refrigerator. Allow approximately 24 hours of thawing time for every 4-5 pounds of turkey.
Brine for Moisture: Consider brining the turkey breast for added moisture and flavor. A simple brine can be made with water, salt, sugar, and aromatics like herbs and spices. Submerge the turkey in the brine for several hours or overnight before roasting.
Herb Butter Under the Skin: To infuse the meat with flavor and keep it moist, gently lift the skin from the turkey breast and spread herb butter underneath. This will create a barrier that prevents the meat from drying out.
Season Generously: Season the turkey breast generously with salt, pepper, and any desired herbs or spices. Don’t forget to season the cavity as well for extra flavor.
Use a Roasting Rack: Place the turkey breast on a roasting rack in the pan. Elevating it allows for even heat circulation and prevents the bottom from getting soggy.
Truss for Even Cooking: Trussing (tying with kitchen twine) the turkey breast helps it cook evenly and maintains its shape during roasting.
Aromatics Inside the Cavity: Stuff the turkey cavity with aromatics like onion, garlic, fresh herbs, and citrus slices. These will release flavorful steam as the turkey cooks.
Baste Occasionally: During roasting, baste the turkey breast every 30 minutes with pan juices or broth to keep it moist and flavorful.
Use a Meat Thermometer: Invest in a meat thermometer and insert it into the thickest part of the breast. This ensures that you cook the turkey to the desired internal temperature (165°F or 74°C) without overcooking.
Rest Before Carving: After roasting, let the turkey breast rest for about 15-20 minutes before carving. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a juicier and more tender turkey.
Save Drippings: Collect the pan drippings to make a delicious gravy to serve with the turkey.
Presentation: Garnish the roasted turkey breast with fresh herbs or citrus slices for an attractive presentation.
Turkey is best when brined, to help preserve moisture and keep your turkey from drying out – but also to infuse flavor throughout the turkey breast.
When your turkey reaches 160 degrees internal temperature (use a thermometer and insert into the fattest part of turkey breast to get an accurate temperature), it is ready to come out of the oven.
Turkey is fully cooked and safe to eat at 165 degrees – but turkey will carryover cook the extra five degrees after removing from oven. Let rest for 20 minutes before slicing and serving.
If your boneless turkey breast comes netted, it is best to cook in the netting, then cut to remove once cooked, so the breast can cook evenly, to lock in juices and prevent thicker areas from drying out. This creates a uniform texture.
The roasting time for a turkey breast depends on its size and the oven temperature. As a general guideline, roast at 325°F (163°C) and calculate about 15-20 minutes per pound. A 7-pound turkey breast may take approximately 2.5 to 3.5 hours to roast.
It’s typically recommended to roast the turkey breast uncovered after an initial period of covering to allow it to brown and develop a crispy skin. However, if you notice it’s browning too quickly, you can tent it loosely with foil.
The best way to determine if the turkey breast is done is by using a meat thermometer. Insert it into the thickest part of the breast without touching bone. The internal temperature should reach 165°F (74°C). Alternatively, you can check for doneness by piercing the breast; the juices should run clear, not pink.
It’s not recommended to stuff a boneless turkey breast as you would with a whole turkey. Instead, you can place aromatic ingredients like onion, garlic, herbs, and citrus slices inside the cavity for flavor.
Basting is optional but can help keep the turkey breast moist. You can baste it with pan juices or broth every 30 minutes during roasting.
Yes, brining is a great way to add flavor and moisture to the turkey breast. Prepare a brine solution with water, salt, sugar, and aromatics, and submerge the turkey breast for several hours or overnight in the refrigerator before roasting.
To make gravy, collect the pan drippings after roasting. Skim off excess fat, then heat the drippings in a saucepan. Add flour to create a roux, then gradually whisk in broth or stock until the desired consistency is reached. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Find our turkey gravy recipe here.
Yes, you can prepare the turkey breast in advance by roasting it and then reheating it before serving. Be sure to store it properly in the refrigerator and use within a few days.
Roasted turkey breast pairs well with a variety of sides, including mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, green beans, and gravy. It’s a versatile dish that complements traditional holiday meals and other occasions.
Store leftover roasted turkey breast in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It should be consumed within 3-4 days. You can also freeze leftovers for longer storage, but be sure to package them securely to prevent freezer burn.
What to Serve With Roasted Turkey Breast
This roasted turkey is easy and delicious – great for an unfussy Thanksgiving.
If you’re looking for simple, delicious sides to go along with this roasted turkey breast, I have simple, delicious sides that are perfect to share for Thanksgiving!
- The Best Easy Baked Scalloped Corn Recipe
- The Best Yeast Rolls Recipe
- The Best Classic Green Bean Casserole Recipe
- Garlic Chinese Style Green Beans
- Easy Roasted Beets and Sweets
- The Best Easy No Knead Bread
- The Best French Onion Soup Ever
- Keto Garlic Artichoke Rolls Recipe
- Whole Roasted Onions Recipe
- The Best Easy Whole Roasted Cauliflower Recipe
- Crispy Herbed Potatoes
You can find the rest of our side dishes at our side dish index page – The Best Easy Side Dishes.
The Best Oven Roasted Turkey Breast Recipe
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- 1 7lb. bone-in turkey breast, giblets removed
- 1 stick butter
- 1 tbsp Italian Herbs Blend
- 1 tsp pink sea salt
- 1 tsp fresh cracked pepper
- 2 cups chicken broth
- Optional Aromatics:
- 1 medium onion chopped into large slices
- 4 garlic cloves
- 2 sprigs Thyme
- 1 orange or lemon, sliced thin
- Preheat oven to 350 degress.
- Pat turkey dry with paper towels.
- Generously rub turkey breast with softened butter - rub butter all around turkey, and carefully lift up skin to rub butter under turkey skin, too.
- Stuff turkey breast cavity with aromatics.
- Add chicken stock to the bottom of roasting pan.
- Coat turkey breast with herbs and spices.
- Place turkey on metal rack in roasting pan or over a baking sheet.
- Tent turkey loosely with foil for first 30 minutes of roasting time.
- Roast in the preheated oven for 1 hour; baste turkey breast with remaining butter mixture occasionally.
- Roast around 1-1 1/2 hours, until the juices run clear and an instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast, not touching bone, reads 165 degrees.
- Tent with foil for at least 10 minutes before carving.
Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 188Total Fat 16gSaturated Fat 10gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 53mgSodium 833mgCarbohydrates 7gFiber 1gSugar 3gProtein 6g
Nutrition is automatically calculated by Nutritionix - please verify all nutrition information independently and consult with a doctor or nutritionist for any and all medical and diet advice.