Foolproof Turkey Breast

Total Time:
8 hr
1 hr
4 hr 45 min
2 hr 15 min

8 to 10 servings

  • 1 (14 to 16-pound) fresh turkey
  • Brine, recipe follows
  • 1 tablespoon dry rubbed sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • For Brine:
  • 6 quarts water
  • 8 cups ice cubes
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 7 fresh sage leaves
  • 1 tablespoons black peppercorns
Watch how to make this recipe.
  • Remove the legs and wings from the turkey, or have your butcher do it. Reserve for stock.

  • Put turkey breast into a large pot or doubled up clean plastic bag. When brine mixture is completely cooled, pour over turkey and place in refrigerator for 12 hours.

  • Rinse under clear cool water for 5 minutes, drain well and pat dry with paper towels.

  • In a small bowl, combine dried spices and lemon zest. Rub turkey with canola oil, lightly sprinkle rub on turkey, any extra rub can be placeed in cavity. Cover loosely, refrigerate for 4 hours.

  • Remove from refrigerator and let rest on counter for 15 minutes

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F while turkey is resting.

  • In a large, deep baking pan, fitted with a rack, place turkey breast side down and roast for 35 minutes. Carefully turn turkey over and reduce heat to 375 degrees F. Continue to roast turkey for 1 hour 45 minutes or until temperature at the deepest part of the breast reads 170 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Make sure to check bird every 15 minutes after first hour has passed.

  • Take out of oven, loosely tent with foil, let rest in pan for 10 minutes. Carve and serve immediately.

For Brine:
  • In a large stock pot, combine 3 quarts water, 1 cup kosher salt, brown sugar, molasses, sage leaves and peppercorns. Heat until salt dissolves, remove from heat. Add in 3 quarts cool water and 8 cups ice.

  • Yield: brine for 1 turkey breast (10 pounds)

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    This recipe is featured in:

    Top Turkeys for Thanksgiving