Recipe: Apple, Pecan & Brie Stuffed Turkey Breast
Larger than its chicken counterpart, turkey breast is the ideal solution when you’re hosting Thanksgiving dinner for a small crowd. This simple, sweet-and-savory, stuffed turkey breast is your answer to getting everything you love about the whole bird — without actually cooking an entire turkey.
Whether your favorite part is the lean, juicy meat; the crispy skin; or the stuffing, this dish has it all.
A couple years ago, when it was just my husband and I for Thanksgiving, we both wanted a traditional holiday dinner, but it didn’t make sense to cook a whole turkey. Even with our love for leftovers, it would have been more meat than we could possibly eat. Instead we settled on a large, stuffed turkey breast; it was the perfect amount of meat for dinner, plus some extra for leftovers.
While I love a good helping of turkey, my favorite part of this recipe is the stuffing. It has a little bit of everything — it’s sweet, savory, crunchy, and creamy. I like using tart apples like Granny Smith for this recipe, although sweeter apples, like Honeycrisp, Cortland, or Empire, also work well.
If you’ve ever prepared stuffed chicken breast, this recipe comes together in much the same way. The only difference is you’re working with a larger cut of meat. But don’t let that intimidate you — it’s quite easy. The most important thing to keep in mind while cutting the slit in the meat is not to cut all the way through. You’re creating a deep pocket to fill the turkey with lots of creamy Brie, apples, and pecans.
Apple, Pecan & Brie Stuffed Turkey Breast
1/2 cup peeled and diced apple
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage leaves
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
2 ounces thinly sliced Brie cheese
1 (2- to 3-pound) boneless turkey breast
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cubed
Freshly ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and set aside.
Combine the apples, pecans, sage, and a pinch of salt and pepper, in a small bowl.
Pat the turkey breast dry. Using a sharp knife, make a deep slit along the meatiest side, cutting far into the breast with your knife parallel to the cutting board to create a pocket (don’t slice all the way through).
Layer the slices of Brie inside the pocket, then use your hands to push the stuffing on top of the cheese. Stick three to four toothpicks through the open edges of the turkey to keep the stuffing from falling out.
Loosen the skin on the turkey breast and use your fingers to push the butter under the skin. Spread the skin back out across the breast, and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Place on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until the skin is brown and crispy, and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the breast reads 165°F. Remove the turkey from the oven and rest for about 5 minutes. Remove toothpicks, and then slice the turkey to serve.