Cooking Turkey Breast in an Oven Bag

January 11, 2020   65 Comments

Cooking turkey breast in an oven bag saves you so much effort and worry.

Cooking Turkey Breast in an Oven Bag

Why? You simply can’t go wrong using an oven bag. A few years ago, a reader suggested that I try them and I became a convert. I find cooking meat like turkey breast stressful because when it goes wrong - it can be inedible. Go ahead, try to eat dry turkey breast.

But, it is worth cooking your own. I did a sliced turkey breast review and found buying pre-cooked turkey breast to be a crap shoot. Also, it was expensive. A bone-in turkey breast costs about $2 per pound and you can freeze the cooked breast meat for later meals or lunches.

I cooked turkey breast in the slow cooker and that was pretty good because all the moisture remained inside the slow cooker. The problem was getting the timing right so that turkey was perfect.

If you are a WW member, turkey breast is zero points on the blue and purple plan. For 6 ounces of turkey breast with no skin, it costs you 2 smart points on the green plan. Turkey breast is high in protein and low in saturated fat so it is a favorite for nutritionists.

The Reynolds bags come with easy instructions for all sorts of turkey. My turkey breast was 8 pounds and was bone in (at the very bottom of the scale) and took exactly 2 hours to cook at 350 F. I calculated 13.5 minutes per pound based on the above chart.

All you do is put 1 tablespoon of flour in the bag and shake it, salt and pepper the turkey all over (no need for butter), tie up the bag, cut a few slits in it, put it in a 9x13 inch casserole and pop it in the oven.

Go do something else!!

Do not stand there obsessed with whether or not your turkey will be done perfectly because it will be done perfectly and your family will throw a party for you when the turkey breast is moist and delicious.

I checked about 10 minutes before it was done with a digital thermometer. This is the other tool you need to ensure your turkey is perfect. You are aiming for 165 F.

Are you ready for the best part?

Pull it out of the oven, cut open the bag, pull out the turkey breast and there is almost no clean up. Do you have to scrub the roasting pan because of the burnt on pan juices? No!!

You are done in a matter of minutes and you simply toss out the bag. I know the green groovies are going to come after me – but this is far better than buying 1 pound plastic bags full of sliced turkey breast from the deli counter once per week.

The turkey tastes so much better than the sliced meat from the deli counter. You can adjust the flavorings to suit you. Usually, I use salt and pepper because I like the taste of plain turkey.

The only issue with the oven bags is that you cannot get the skin to brown. If you want that perfectly roasted look, take the breast out of the bag, and put it under a high temperature broiler for a few minutes (watch carefully) to brown it.

Or you can simply toss the skin (or give it to your dog) - which is what I do.

Have you tried cooking turkey breast in an oven bag? What did you think?

Other posts you might like:

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A few weeks ago, I roasted turkey breast and found out that I had done it all wrong.....

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First 20 Comments: ( See all 65 )

So happy you like oven bags and my suggestion! As for the mess - with bag or without I use the turkey juices to make gravy. If I don't use a bag I whisk the roasting pan with the juices and water to scrape up all the crunchy stuff and then make the gravy.

Do you need to defrost or can you cook a frozen breast in the bag ? This is a great idea can't wait to try it thanks

I like to use crock-pot liners for ease of cleaning, does that affect the outcome or cooking time?

@Sara - You do need to defrost the breast to have it cook evenly and properly. Great question!!

@ghada - crock pot liners do not affect cooking or outcome with a turkey breast. use them!!

I have cooked turkey breats in the oven bags and they came out really moist. I am concerned now if cooking in plastic is a good idea. Are these bags BPA free ..are they safe to cook with. I don't want to add chemicals to the food.

I won't cook anything in plastic. I cook mine in my slow cooker and they turn out great! Plus--the disposable bags aren't very environmentally friendly. I don't mind cleaning a pot/pan after cooking if I know that it keeps me and my family healthy and I'm contributing towards a cleaner, healthy planet!

I make my chicken in the oven bags and I love it.

Be very careful when using oven roasting bags!!!! Make sure the pan is large enough to accommodate not only your turkey, but the bag! Last year, on New Year's Day, I had a grease fire in my oven! The bag filled up with turkey drippings, plopped over the side of the pan, and sprang a leak. The dripping juice caused a fire on the oven floor, and burst into flames. I immediately called 911. In less than 10 minutes, I had 3 fire engines show up at my house. The fire was quickly extinguished, but it took months before I felt safe enough to use my oven again!

Technically the bags are nylon and not plastic so they do NOT contain BPA. Just letting everyone know I wanted to check for myself.

Do you put the breast in the bag with the skin side up or down? Thanks & Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

To Lauren: these are NOT...I repeat NOT plastic bags. You had to assume didn't you.. Perhaps you should read before you make your sermon. The bags are a nylon type and no BPAs. Do you really believe Reynolds is that stupid? Give me a break. If you don't do turkey this way, fine. Just learn before you preach.

Looks great. Can your recommend a good oven safe digital thermometer? Thank you :)

Wow! Just tried for first time ever. In fact, I've not done a breast before....and I'm 70. Always did whole turkey and we had a small dinner today after Thanksgiving with friends. Can't get over how well this worked. I mixed thyme, rosemary and Herbs de Provence into butter and rubbed over bird and under skin. Then used a med, peeled onion and half lemon inside the cavity. This was a most moist bird...first time in 40 years my husband had wanted more white yes on this as a method. Bravo!

I have used many different brands. I always thought one was about the same as another...NOT true. After spending who knows how much I finally invested in the one that is the standard for all others: ThermoWorks is the none in my opinion.. Here is a look from Cooks Illustrated that discusses why it is worth the $$$$. The Mk4 is sold for $99; ThermoWorks plans to keep selling the older model, now called the Classic Splash-Proof Thermapen, for $79. Curious to see if the improvements were worth having, we bought four Mk4s and tested them against the Classic, using them to take the temperatures of...…

If I am cooking two turkey breasts (1 - 8 lbs) (2nd is 6 pounds) in two large oven bags, would I cook for the same amount of time for both or cook as though it was one big turkey breast? Can't wait to try and get good results. Thanks for the post!

If using a turkey bag do u put water in the bag or pan

7 lb frozen turkey breast in oven bag @ 325°how much time per pound?


TO THAW THE TURKEY:To thaw a frozen turkey, calculate ONE DAY of fridge time for every 4 pounds of turkey. If you need to speed it up...Fill a large bucket with cold water and plunk the still-wrapped bird in and let thaw for 30 minutes per pound, BUT BE SURE THAT YOU change the cold water every 30 minutes to avoid accidentally inviting nasty bacteria to your holiday feast.

Once the bird is well thawed...then you can prepare it for roasting.

Then follow the directions on the Reynolds Oven Bag ==times differ for a turkey with the bone and one that is boneless. AGAIN..DO NOT TRY TO ROAST THE FROZEN TURKEY...I am 70 years old and I can't ever remember someone telling me they tried to roast a frozen turkey.....first of need to get the giblets out of the neck not roast the turkey with those inside the bird. Hope this is of help to you.

If. I am cooking to turkey breasts each 5-6 lbs , each in their own bag, do i still follow the time as if cooking one ?

?? I would contact the Mfg directly. Have no clue because I've never done this. Most co's are great answering this type of question. I just started using the bags in 2016 and I was impressed.

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