Roasted Turkey Breast


Total Time:

2 hours 15 minutes



Let’s talk Roasted Turkey Breast!

Roasted Turkey Breast from (@whatsgabycookin)

Hands down one of the MOST frequent questions I got last week on our Thanksgiving Q+A on IG was how to do a turkey or turkey breast. Thanksgiving is right around the corner and I know that roasting an entire turkey can be a little bit intimidating (especially if this is your first time!) and maybe not even entirely necessary this year! So with everyone celebrating the holidays with smaller groups and mostly immediate family this year, a turkey breast is an easy alternative to the entire bird.

Roasted Turkey Breast from (@whatsgabycookin)

How long does it take to roast a turkey breast? It’s way faster than a whole bird!! A turkey breast takes about 90 minutes to 2 hours and takes up less space in your oven!

How much Turkey Breast do I need per person? I go with about 1 lb per person. There are so many sides, let’s be honest, those are where the real servings come into play!

What sides go with a roasted turkey breast? the usual Thanksgiving side dishes are perfect! Here are my favorites

Should I still brine a turkey breast? yes – absolutely!! Wet or dry brine is great and if you opt for a wet brine, you won’t need as big of a vessel to store the turkey in so it’s an overall win! You can reduce the water in the wet brine by 1/2.

Can you make gravy with a Roasted Turkey Breast? sure can! Just follow my recipe here!

Roasted Turkey Breast from (@whatsgabycookin)
Roasted Turkey Breast from (@whatsgabycookin)

Roasted Turkey Breast

If you still want that delicious turkey but without the headache of an entire bird, this Roasted Turkey Breast recipe is perfect for you! Recipe adapted from the queen – Ina Garten!
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 15 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 6 people


  • 1 whole bone-in turkey breast, 6 1/2 to 7 pounds
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup dry white wine (sauv blanc)


  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the turkey breast, skin side up, on a rack in a roasting pan.
  • In a small bowl, combine the garlic, herbs, salt, pepper, olive oil, and lemon juice to make a paste. Loosen the skin from the meat gently with your fingers and smear half of the paste directly on the meat. Spread the remaining paste evenly on the skin. Pour the wine into the bottom of the roasting pan.
  • Roast the turkey for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until the skin is golden brown and an instant-read thermometer registers 165 degrees F when inserted into the thickest and meatiest areas of the breast. If the skin is over-browning, cover the breast loosely with aluminum foil. When the turkey is done, cover with foil and allow it to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes. Slice and serve with the pan juices spooned over the turkey.

Photo by Matt Armendariz / Food Styling by Adam Pearson / Prop Styling by Stephanie Hanes // Recipe adapted from the queen – Ina Garten!

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Recipe Rating


  1. susan (the urban baker)

    gaby, this is gorgeous…can I have some? I love your cooking!

  2. Rachel

    Thank you for this! Many have suggested this as an alterative if there will be a smaller crowd. This will be a nice option for my own family to have on Thanksgiving since we’re not hosting but also pushing it back a few days so more family can join and to avoid the traffic. Thanks again!

  3. Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking

    Gaby, this looks incredibly good! My husband and I are just going to be by ourselves this year, so I was thinking of making a roasted chicken, but this looks even better! Thanks for the awesome idea and this deeeelish recipe!

  4. Fernando


    Have you thought of cooking it sous vide (at 145-150 degrees, F) and then searing it real quick in peanut oil (basically frying the exterior) to get the crispy skin? You’d end up with a beautiful breast and you’d guarantee that it doesn’t overcook (I like my chicken and turkey breast meat cooked medium, so 145 is perfect for me).

  5. monika

    I have been hearing about brining for a while, but have never tried it. You show that it is ultra easy, so this year I am definitely doing it! I love the turkey breast idea as it is the only part of the turkey that I enjoy. This together with the stuffing you made promises to be a great meal. I am waiting for the dessert………..

  6. marla

    Thank you so much for giving us the pardon to not have to cook the whole bird. I have never brined a turkey (or anything) for that matter. You take the mystery & fear out of it. Must try this Thanksgiving as I am sure the flavor is superior! xo
    By the way, I just posted a salad that would accompany your turkey beautifully!

  7. Sandy

    OK, you’ve convinced me about the brining. The photo looks good enough to eat!

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  9. anya

    This is simple enough for me! Thanks for all of the great ideas Gaby! Keep em comin’!

  10. Cookity Cook

    I brined for the first time three years ago and have never looked back. Like you, I’m only cooking the breast. No one in my house eats dark meat. It’s just a waste for us. Wonderful pictures! I stumbled her via TasteSpotting.

  11. Erin

    I am going to make this tomorrow! My mom insists on doing Thanksgiving every year so my bf and I have a tradition to make an alternative Thanksgiving every year, I get to try some less traditional dishes and a breast is the perfect size for us, plus leftovers- thanks for the great tips, hope mine turns out as well as yours!!!

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  14. Andrea H

    I’m in charge of Thanksigivng with my in-laws (we just lost my mother in law) so this seems perfect. I’m trying to make the day special but not be ‘over the top’. You mentioned that there is a must have gravy? Does the turkey breast produce enough drippings to make gravy? Do you have a recipie listed anywhere for how to make it?

    Thank you~

    • Gaby

      Hi Andrea!

      Yes – the turkey will produce enough drippings for Gravy! I don’t have a recipe listed anywhere on the site yet but all I do is remove the turkey breast from the pan, put the pan over medium high heat with the drippings. Add 3 tbsp of flour and whisk it into the drippings and then add turkey or chicken stock until it comes to a consistency that I like!! Hope you enjoy! And Happy Thanksgiving 🙂

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  16. Holly

    This looks so good. I am combining ideas from several sources (yours included) to make boneless skinless turkey breasts in the slow cooker today. So excited for supper tonight!

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  18. Annie

    Just wanted to let you know that I made this today for Thanksgiving and the turkey was absolutely fantastic. So juicy and flavorful. I used half the amount of salt on the skin though and the skin was still pretty salty, but the meat was perfect.

  19. Erika

    I always do a turkey breast for Thanksgiving – in fact, I have the butcher bone it, so that when it comes out of the oven all I have to do is slice and serve. I haven’t brined in the past but I am definitely going to try that next year. Thanks for the step-by-step instructions, Gaby. Love the video – you always look so confident on camera! How do you do it????

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  23. Teresa

    Hey Gaby,

    New to all things turkey and brining. I’m super excited to try your easy looking recipe for Christmas. Question though… What do you do with all that water?


    • Gaby

      Hi Teresa!

      Thanks for catching that typo! The water goes into the bag with the salt and brown sugar as the brine!!

      Thanks 🙂

  24. Teresa

    Thanks Gaby!!

    Followed your instructions and mine is brining as I type 🙂 Can’t wait to try it tomorrow!!! Thank You and Happy Holidays!!

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  27. peggy

    I do hope it is a type o when you say 2tbsp sea salt I used less than that and it tasted like I was licking a salt block. Had to scrap it all off the turkey other than that the turkey breast was wonderful, very moist.

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  29. Kris

    I read somewhere that you shouldn’t brine a frozen turkey breast, only fresh. Is that true?

  30. Monique

    Hello from an American expat in Finland! Your recipe looks excellent and perfect for our smaller European ovens. Turkey breasts come pre-skinned here so I was wondering how you think this might affect this recipe. They are also pricy and I’m preparing for a large crowd so I can’t afford to mess it up! Thanks!

    • Gaby

      Hi Monique!

      I’ve never tried it without the skin so I’m not sure how it will affect the turkey. But I dont see why you can do it without the skin. I roast chicken breasts without the skin and they are great. I’d just be sure to add a healthy amount of butter or oil on top so the turkey stays moist while it’s roasting.

    • Monique

      Thanks. It’s mostly the moisture I’m concerned about too since the skin does such an excellent job trapping the juices inside. I wonder if cooking it covered for the first hour would help with that at all…

    • Monique

      This was fabulous! I cut som slits to put butter in and cooked this covered. It was moist and delicious!

  31. Marianne

    My turkey breast is a double one. Not sure I can brine it because I don’t have a big enought pan to do the brine in. Any suggestions?

    • Gaby

      Can you use a zip top extra large bag to brine?? Those big ones they sell at the market would probably be big enough

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  36. Chrissy

    Hi I really wanted to try this but I can’t find the video link for the brine. And I have never done it before. What am I doing with the water? Using it to rinse? Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving!

  37. Katie

    5 stars
    Lemme begin this review with a simple statement. I do not like turkey, like it’s okay, but on thanksgiving there are too many other noms to enjoy (ahem… STUFFING).

    But this recipe changed everything. The brine is key. I made this turkey breast recipe for my boyfriend and my first Thanksgiving together away from our family and we both at it all up. No leftover turkey. It was juicy and flavorful all the way through. Well done, Gaby!

  38. Cherie

    Hi Gaby – do you still use the 16 cups of water to brine a turkey breast or cut that recipe? Do you have a great way to cook turkey legs for those who like dark meat?

    • Gaby

      you can reduce the water by half for the wet brine. And this recipe works for turkey legs as well! Just keep your eye on the internal temp of the legs to know when they are done! (looking for 165)

  39. Susie Rowe

    Can I use a turkey breast without the bone or skin? Can I use the wet brine and cook it in my crockpot instead of oven? Be honest!

    • Gaby

      you def want the skin – it keeps it from drying out and you want that little layer. and I haven’t done it in a crock pot to be totally honest