Easy Turkey and Turkey Breast Recipes for a Less-Stress Thanksgiving Dinner
First, decide if you'll roast a whole turkey or just a turkey breast. If you're expecting a big crowd, you'll want a whole bird (possibly two). If yours will be a more intimate gathering, you might consider cooking just a turkey breast (which can vary in size and preparation, feeding from four to 10 people), since it's smaller and much more manageable (it's also a great option for novices or cooks who don't have any time to do advance prep).
Then, think about how traditional or unconventional you want to go, flavor-wise. Keeping it classic usually means using herbs such as rosemary, thyme (and you'll find plenty of recipes sticking to that tried-and-true script here); as well as standard aromatics including bay leaves, carrots, and onions. We've also got recipes that push the flavor envelope just a tad with the use of lemon zest. Another direction is a sweet-savory one, with a few of the recipes in this gallery incorporating brown sugar or maple syrup into a sweet glaze. If you want to brine, we recommend a dry brine, like the glorious Easy Dry-Brined Roasted Turkey shown here. Dry brining is so much easier and less messy—the end result is so much tastier.
Whichever recipe you go with, don't forget to read the recipe through from start to finish—a few times!—far in advance. That way you won't be thrown off by an eight-hour brine or sub-recipes you'll want to have prepped ahead of time, such as an herb butter or stuffing.
Find the right recipe here and roast an easy, delicious turkey this year.
This is an impressive dish, and it's also one that's much easier than carving a whole bird (still, we recommend slicing in the kitchen and bringing the platter out to your guests—and a round of applause!). Boneless turkey breast is rolled with a festive stuffing of rye bread, cranberries, and pistachios. Another bonus: The stuffing helps stretch the meat so this recipe uses half a turkey breast to feed 10.
Roast Turkey with Rosemary and Lemon
Stuffed Turkey Breast
A boneless turkey breast is stuffed with fresh parsley, garlic, and lemon zest, and then wrapped in bacon. This impressive Thanksgiving main dish serves six and is ready in less than an hour.
Roast Turkey with Herb Butter
Spice-Rubbed Turkey Breast with Sweet Potatoes
Brined, Slow-Cooked Turkey Breast
A whole turkey breast is soaked in a simple brine for added moisture and flavor, then cooked on a charcoal grill over indirect heat for an hour and a half. If it's too cold out to grill, simply roast the turkey in the oven at 350 degrees.
Roast Spatchcocked Turkey
When the turkey's backbone is removed and the halves are flattened, it takes only a little more than an hour to roast a whole bird—plus, it roasts more evenly.
Roast Turkey with Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze
Brown sugar and spicy mustard make a tried-and-true glaze for ham, but they're delightful on roasted turkey, too. This easy Thanksgiving turkey is first rubbed with butter and roasted until beginning to brown, then brushed with the tangy-sweet glaze during the last hour of cooking.
No brines or sauces are required to prepare this super-simple roasted Thanksgiving turkey. Bay leaves, carrots, and onions are stuffed into the cavity to perfume the meat while it cooks.
Molasses-Glazed Turkey Breast and Acorn Squash
Chili powder, cayenne pepper, and molasses make an earthy, spicy, deep-brown glaze for turkey breast and acorn squash. This Thanksgiving meal is on the table in just a little over an hour.
A blend of dried sage, thyme, marjoram, pepper, and salt is rubbed under this turkey's skin to flavor the meat while it roasts. The turkey skin gets its crispiness and deep golden-brown hue from frequent basting.
Mustard-Crusted Turkey Breast
Make your main dish and side dish at once in with this easy recipe that serves six. Coat a boneless turkey breast in whole-grain mustard and roast it alongside broccoli and carrots.
Salt and Pepper Turkey
Roasted Rolled Turkey Breast with Herbs
An elegant and easy option for Thanksgiving dinner or a dinner party anytime of the year. There are no bones to deal with but this recipe does require rolling into an even shape for roasting.
Combine oregano, parsley, dried basil, paprika, and garlic powder to make a dry rub for boneless, skinless turkey breast. Grill it over indirect heat for moist, juicy meat.