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December 16, 2013

Dry Rubbed Turkey

The perfect seasoning blend is all you need to for an oven roasted dry rubbed turkey breast that's worthy of Thanksgiving dinner or any meal.

The perfect seasoning blend is all you need to for an oven roasted dry rubbed turkey breast that’s worthy of Thanksgiving dinner or any meal.

Dry Rubbed Turkey

From sides to dessert and everything in between, Thanksgiving is my absolute favorite holiday meal. In my family everyone contributes a little something, so essentially it’s the ultimate potluck.

The past few years we have skipped the entire turkey and roasted just the breast instead. What we’ve found is that most people at our table prefer this part of the bird. Then preparing the turkey isn’t such a production.

When you’re cooking an elaborate family meal, oven time is very valuable. By just doing a turkey breast, it frees up the oven for stuffing, pie and more.

Also, there’s less risk of drying out the white meat when you are only roasting a turkey breast instead of the whole thing with dark meat too.

And don’t limit this oven roasted turkey breast to Thanksgiving. Because it’s a recipe that creates leftovers, you can cook a turkey on Sunday and repurpose it throughout a week of meals.

Turkey spice rub in a bowl

Dried Spices for Turkey

This are the ingredients in my turkey dry rub mix:

  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Oregano
  • Paprika
  • Cumin
  • Onion Powder
  • Garlic Powder
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Kosher Salt
  • Black Pepper

Dry rubs are great because you can mix them together in minutes. Also, you don’t have to season the meat, poultry or whatever hours and hours in advance to get amazing flavor. And those spices don’t slide off during cooking like a liquid marinade can.

Dry Rubbed Turkey

Oven Temperature for Roast Turkey Breast

For a turkey breast, I start the oven at 450 degrees F. After 30 minutes, I turn down the heat to 375 degrees F.

That first half hour cooking at a higher heat helps the skin brown. Then lowering the temperature slows the roasting down just enough, so the breast doesn’t dry out.

How Long To Cook A Turkey Breast In The Oven

For a bone-in turkey breast, allow 1-1/2 to 2 hours cook time. It is very helpful to have an instant read digital thermometer. The temperature in the thickest part of the breast should be 165 degrees F. Then you will know it is cooked.

While not nearly as accurate or as foolproof as a thermometer, when you press on the breast, the juices that run out should be clear when the turkey is ready.

Again, it is worth buying a thermometer.

How To Make A Dry Rubbed Turkey Breast

  1. Make the spice mix. In a small bowl, stir together the rosemary, thyme, oregano, paprika, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
  2. Place the turkey breast on a rack inside a roasting pan skin side up.
  3. Rub the turkey with the spice mixture including carefully under the skin. Let the breast sit at room temperature for 1 hour.
  4. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  5. When the oven is hot, roast the turkey for 30 minutes.
  6. Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees F.
  7. Continue roasting for 1-1/2 – 2 hours. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast should be 165 degrees F when the turkey is ready.
  8. Let the turkey rest for 20 minutes.
  9. Carve the turkey breast.

How To Carve A Bone-In Roast Turkey Breast

  • Take your chef’s knife and run it all the way down the bone from the top to the bottom of the breast. Continue with those long strokes like you are freeing the turkey from the bone. Repeat this to remove the other breast half.
  • Then slice the breasts crosswise, against the grain, at your preferred thickness.
Dry Rubbed Turkey

How To Serve Turkey On A Platter

Even though you aren’t going to be showing off an entire turkey, you can still make the presentation special. You can’t go wrong with fresh herbs and fruit to decorate your serving platter.

Since the skin of the turkey is golden brown and the flesh is kind of beige, this is a great way to boost the plate with lots of color and greenery. And these are all things you can pick up at the grocery, so they don’t require another stop on your shopping trip.

Some of my go-to garnishes include:

  • Fresh Herbs: sage, parsley, rosemary
  • Citrus Fruit: oranges (especially blood oranges), grapefruit, lemons
  • Fall Fruit: pomegranate (quartered), persimmons
  • Hearty Greens: kale, swiss chard, beet greens

What To Do With Turkey Leftovers

Besides the obvious post-Thanksgiving sandwich, you can shred leftover turkey and add it to soups and chili.

Instead of roast chicken in salads, you can include turkey.

Store leftover turkey in the refrigerator in an airtight container up to 3 days.

Tools For This Recipe

More Thanksgiving Recipes

Garlic Herb Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
Sweet Potato Mushroom Stuffing
Honey Balsamic Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Roasted Beet Wild Rice
Maple-Glazed Acorn Squash
Parmesan Herb Roasted Acorn Squash
Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Sauteed Butternut Squash and Kale
Sauteed Broccolini with Spiced Almonds
Hasselback Sweet Potatoes
Salted Caramel Apple Pie

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Dry Rubbed Turkey

Dry Rubbed Turkey

  • Author: Paige Adams
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 1-1/2 – 2 hours
  • Total Time: 2-1/2 – 3 hours
  • Yield: Serves 68 1x
  • Category: Main Dishes
  • Method: Roasting
  • Cuisine: American

The perfect seasoning blend is all you need to for an oven roasted dry rubbed turkey breast that’s worthy of Thanksgiving dinner or any meal.

Ingredients

  • For dry rub
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • For turkey
  • 1 8-pound bone-in turkey breast

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, combine the rosemary, thyme, oregano, paprika, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
  2. Place the turkey breast skin side up on a rack inside a roasting pan. Rub the spice mixture on the entire turkey breast including underneath the skin. Let the turkey sit at room temperature for 1 hour.
  3. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  4. Roast the turkey for 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees F and continue roasting for 1 to 1-1/2 hours until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the breast is 165 degrees F. Let the turkey rest for 20 minutes before slicing.
  • Author: Paige Adams
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 1-1/2 – 2 hours
  • Total Time: 2-1/2 – 3 hours
  • Yield: Serves 68 1x
  • Category: Main Dishes
  • Method: Roasting
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: best turkey seasoning, turkey dry rub, spices for turkey

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  1. […] holiday, I can’t get enough of the anticipation surrounding what side dishes will accompany the turkey. After the big meal and days of leftovers, I crave meals that are pretty much the opposite of that […]