Need just enough turkey for a small gathering? Then this juicy and buttery Slow Cooker Turkey Breast is the recipe for you. No one will notice that it wasn’t cooked traditionally in the oven!
We love making the turkey breast, slow cooker stuffing, and green bean casserole in different slow cookers. Who needs an oven? Try my slow cooker turkey and gravy or my lemon herb turkey breast if you are looking for a turkey breast recipe without bones.
Can I cook turkey in a crockpot?
Yes! It’s similar to cooking a whole chicken in the slow cooker. The turkey turns out tender as can be, and the drippings can be made into gravy!
We use this recipe for when we have a smaller Thanksgiving or Christmas, or we are craving turkey sandwiches. We use the leftover in Slow Cooker Turkey and Dumplings.
- Turkey Breast – Frozen and thawed Bone-in turkey breast. Both sides of the breast are on the bone. This almost has the shape of an entire turkey.
- Melted Butter – Pour over an entire stick of melted butter. This will flavor the turkey and the gravy if you decide to make gravy with the drippings. You can use olive oil here if you prefer.
- Seasonings – Sprinkle the buttered turkey with thyme, sage, paprika, salt and pepper. The paprika will give the turkey a browned look and also will give the gravy (if you decide to make gravy) a darker color.
Step One – Remove the thawed turkey from its packaging. Rinse off any liquids that are in the cavity—Pat dry with paper towels. Place the turkey in the slow cooker. I usually have to place the turkey on its side for it to be able to fit.
Step Two – Season the turkey breast with sage, thyme, paprika, salt, and pepper. Cook on low for 7 hours.
Step Three – After the cooking time is up, turn off the slow cooker and let the turkey sit for 20 minutes before slicing.
Step Four – Serve and enjoy! You can keep the turkey on the warm setting in the slow cooker for about 2 hours. Be sure to use some of the drippings to keep the turkey moist. If you are worried that your turkey isn’t done, it should read 165 degrees Fahrenheit on a meat thermometer.
What to serve with this recipe?
The sides are just as important as the turkey! Here are my favorite sides to make with turkey breast.
- Slow Cooker Cranberry Sauce
- Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes
- Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole
- Slow Cooker Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- Slow Cooker Homemade Stuffing or Stove-Top Stuffing in the crockpot
Recipe FAQs and Variations
Since this is only the breasts and breast bones, there is quite a bit of meat on the bones. You can get away with about 3/4 pound per person, especially if you serve a few sides.
Turkey does not last long before starting to taste off. Place your extra turkey in a ziplock bag for up to three days or freeze for up to three months.
Yes, it is crucial to thaw your turkey before cooking in the slow cooker. If not thawed the turkey temperature can stay in the “danger zone” and possibly make someone sick. Thaw your turkey breast about 36-48 hours before needed.
Cajun – Skip all the other seasonings and use a cajun seasoning like Tony Chachere’s Cajun Seasoning which has cayenne, onion powder, and garlic powder already mixed in!
Apricot – Add a jar of apricot preserves on top of the butter and seasonings.
Cranberry Onion – Skip the butter and seasonings and instead mix a can of whole cranberry sauce and Lipton onion soup mix and pour over the turkey.
First, cut the turkey off the bone, and place the breasts on a cutting board. Slice the turkey against the grain using a bread knife or a very sharp kitchen knife. We often use an electric knife if we want very thin slices.
If your turkey breast is boneless, you will only need to cook low for 5-6 hours.
There will be about 1- 1 1/2 cups of drippings from this turkey breast. If you desire more, be sure to have some broth or stock on hand.
What can I make with turkey leftovers?
- Slow Cooker Turkey Stock
- Slow Cooker Turkey Chowder
- Slow Cooker Cajun 15 Bean Turkey Soup
- Slow Cooker Turkey Noodle Soup
- Slow Cooker Turkey and Brown Rice Soup
What is great about this recipe is if we are craving turkey, it’s not a big ordeal! We can have a small turkey dinner then have leftovers for turkey sandwiches. I hope you give this recipe a try to have a great week, even though I know it will be a busy one.
Slow Cooker Turkey Breast Recipe
- 5 lb. bone-in turkey breast This should have both sides of the breasts, which looks similar in shape to a very small turkey. (this recipe will work with a 5-8 lb turkey breast)
- 1/2 cup salted butter melted (1 stick) OR olive oil
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1/2 tsp. dried rubbed sage use oregano if you don't have sage
- 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp. paprika
- THAW: Be sure to thaw your turkey breast ahead of time. This can take about 36-48 hours.
- Remove the thawed turkey from its packaging. Rinse off any liquids that are in the cavity. Pat dry with paper towels. Place the turkey in the slow cooker. I usually have to place the turkey on its side for it to be able to fit.
- Pour over the melted butter, then sprinkle over the seasonings.
- Cover and cook on low for 7 hours without opening the lid during the cooking time.
- Let the turkey rest for about 20 minutes before carving. You can use a bread knife, a sharp kitchen knife, or an electric knife.
- If you are going to carve this, then keep it warm in the slow cooker, leave some of the drippings with the meat, or chicken broth to keep it moist. You can keep the turkey on the warm setting for about 2 hours if you add drippings to keep the turkey moist. If you are worried that your turkey isn't done, it should read 165 degrees Fahrenheit on a meat thermometer.
How to Video:
- Cajun – Skip all the other seasonings and use a cajun seasoning like Tony Chachere’s Cajun Seasoning which has cayenne, onion powder, and garlic powder already mixed in!
- Apricot – Add a jar of apricot preserves on top of the butter and seasonings.
- Cranberry Onion – Skip the butter and seasonings and instead mix a can of whole cranberry sauce and Lipton onion soup mix and pour over the turkey.
Nutrition info is auto-generated. This information is an estimate; if you are on a special diet, please use your own calculations.