Roast Turkey Breast

"Recipe courtesy Kelsey Nixon"
photo by photo by
Ready In:
3hrs 10mins


  • 1 turkey breast, on the bone rinsed and patted dry (6 to 7-pounds)
  • 14 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • aromatics and seasonings for turkey (recommended ( garlic, fresh herbs, citrus zest, spices, etc.)
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 small carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 small onions, peeled and quartered


  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  • In a small bowl, combine the softened butter with chosen aromatics and seasonings and salt and pepper.
  • Carefully lift the skin from the meat and rub half of the seasoned butter directly on the turkey breast. Rub the rest of the seasoned butter on the skin. Season the turkey generously with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  • Scatter the vegetables on the bottom of a roasting pan just large enough to hold the turkey. Set the meat breast-side up in the pan. Roast for about 2 hours or until an instant read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 160 degrees F. Transfer the turkey to a cutting board and tent loosely with foil for 20 minutes. The breast temperature will continue to rise as it rests. Carve the breast and serve with the pan juices.
  • Roasting times for a turkey breast cooked in a 325 degrees F oven:

  • Unstuffed, a 2 to 3-pound turkey will cook from 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  • Unstuffed, a 4 to 6-pound turkey will cook from 1 1/2 to 2 1/4 hours.
  • Unstuffed, a 7 to 8-pound turkey will cook from 2 1/4 to 3 1/4 hours; if stuffed, it will cook in 3 to 4 hours.
  • Roasted Turkey Breast Variations:

  • Lemon and Thyme:

  • Season the butter with 3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon lemon zest.
  • Honey Glazed:

  • Season the butter with 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, and 2 tablespoons honey.
  • Soy Ginger:

  • Season the butter with 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger, 2 teaspoons soy sauce, and 3 cloves garlic, minced.
  • Cook's Note:

  • A shallow baking pan will yield the best results when roasting a turkey breast, allowing air to flow completely around the turkey breast.

Questions & Replies

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  1. clmortenson
    I just wanted to say thank you for all of the helpful information in this recipe: variations and cooking times for different sizes. I haven't made it yet, but this is a really well written recipe!


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