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Roast Turkey Breast for Slicing

Updated February 23, 2016
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This image courtesy of JosephDeLeo.cookstr.com

A simple roasted turkey breast is great for families. After the first meal of hot roasted white meat turkey, the breast can be refrigerated and then sliced for sandwiches, salads, and omelets. We like turkey served with brown rice and steamed vegetables. Or serve it alongside a cup of soup. Sliced turkey is a good source of protein and doesn’t have much fat. It’s best to buy fresh turkey breast, but we know it’s far easier to find it frozen in the supermarket. Frozen birds need to defrost (see the note at the end of the recipe), which takes time but isn’t difficult.

Serves8

Cooking Methodroasting

CostModerate

Moderate

Total Timeunder 4 hours

Kid FriendlyYes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionBuffet, Casual Dinner Party, Family Get-together

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationdiabetic, egg-free, gluten-free, halal, healthy, kosher, lactose-free, low carb, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free

Mealdinner, lunch

Taste and Textureherby, meaty, savory

Ingredients

  • One 5½- to 6-pound bone-in turkey breast
  • 3 carrots, peeled and halved
  • 2 ribs celery, trimmed and quartered
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 6 to 8 fresh sage leaves or 1 tablespoon dried sage
  • 6 stems fresh thyme (each about 4 inches long)
  • 2 stems fresh rosemary (each about 4 inches long)
  • ½ lemon
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, optional
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, optional
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, optional
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

Rinse the turkey breast with water. Put on a rack in a roasting pan. Surround the turkey with the carrots, celery, and onion quarters and tuck the herbs in the vegetables and under the turkey. Squeeze the lemon juice over the turkey and tuck the squeezed lemon half under the turkey.

Rub the olive oil over the turkey breast, if using, and season with salt and pepper, if desired. Pour the water around the turkey.

Loosely tent the turkey with aluminum foil and roast for 2 hours. Remove the foil and roast for about 30 minutes longer, or until the skin is crisp and browned, the juices run clear, and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the breast meat registers 170°F. Turkey breast should be cooked for 20 to 25 minutes to the pound.

Lift the breast from the pan and let it rest on a cutting board for about 10 minutes. Discard the vegetables. Slice and serve the turkey.

If the turkey breast is frozen, let it defrost in the refrigerator for 24 to 48 hours. You may also defrost it in a sink filled with cold water. Leave the turkey in its wrapping and submerge it in the water. Depending on the size of the breast, this will take from 4 to 8 hours. Never leave it on the countertop to thaw.

VARIATION:

Sliced Turkey Breast with Soy Sauce: Lay sliced, cooked turkey in a broiler pan and sprinkle lightly with low-sodium soy sauce. Broil for 8 to 10 minutes, turning the turkey slices once, just until heated through.

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