It’s easy to associate cooking a turkey with a long, laborious process and a huge amount of meat. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Whether you’re cooking Thanksgiving dinner for only 1 or 2 people, or you’re looking for an easier way to cook turkey so you can banish processed deli turkey from your life, this recipe for Crock-Pot turkey breast is what you need.
Turkey breasts on the bone are sold in most grocery stores year round. Crock-Pots are known for keeping meat moist and tender over a long, slow cooking time and turkey breast is no exception. Rub the bird down with herbs and butter (or just season liberally with spices), leave it alone for 7 hours, and return to a house that smells like Thanksgiving – even if it’s the middle of summer. No fuss, no muss.
This recipe cooks the turkey on a simple bed of shallots, celery and carrots but you can add as many different types of root vegetables as you like. One turkey breast half will easily feed two people, but leftovers aren’t likely. (One breast is probably enough if you just want some sliced turkey for lunches/salads during the week) If you want more meat, you can add another turkey breast to the Crock Pot without changing much else in this recipe; just add a little more butter, herbs and salt.
Time in the Kitchen: 15 minutes of hands-on cooking and 4+ hours in the Crock-Pot
4 to 6 shallots, thinly sliced
6 stalks of celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
3 tablespoons unsalted butter (30 g)
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley (60 ml)
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage (30 ml)
1 teaspoon kosher salt (5 ml)
One single bone-in turkey breast (about 2 pounds/900 g) or 2 bone-in turkey breasts (about 5 pounds/2.3 kg)
1 cup hot water or chicken stock
Lightly oil the bottom of the slow cooker.
Spread the shallot, celery and carrots out on the bottom of the slow cooker.
Melt the butter in a bowl and stir in the parsley, sage and salt.
Place turkey breast on the veggies, skin side up, and rub it down completely with the butter and herbs. Pull up the skin and rub the meat as well.
Pour the hot water or stock around the turkey.
Secure the lid and cook on low until the meat is tender and the internal temperature reaches 165 ºF/74 ºC. This will take anywhere between 4 to 7 hours.
Let the turkey rest for 20 minutes or so before slicing.
At some holiday tables, stuffing is just as important as turkey on Thanksgiving. If you live in one of these homes and have been missing stuffing on Thanksgiving, or making a traditional recipe but wishing you had one that was more in-tune with the way you prefer to eat, then now is the time to give thanks. Finally, there is a Primal stuffing recipe (made from bread!) that can grace your table.
Yes, you read that correctly. The key ingredient in this recipe is bread. But not just any bread. This special loaf is straight from Primal Cravings, a cookbook full of fun and flexible recipes guided by primal/paleo principles. While the bread gives the stuffing the texture and bready flavor you might crave, bread isn’t the only thing this stuffing is all about. It’s also loaded with sausage, spinach, leeks and parsley. The flavor is rich, comforting and satisfying.
So if this recipe strikes your fancy, then proudly slide this stuffing onto the table, right next to the turkey. It just might become a new family tradition.
Combine water and honey in a medium bowl. Sprinkle in yeast. Whisk together and let sit for a minute or two until the yeast is activated (noticeable by the pale foam that will develop on the surface of the water). Whisk in butter, eggs and powdered gelatin.
Whisk together dry ingredients in a large bowl.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Whisk thoroughly, making sure there are no lumps.
Preheat oven to 375 ºF/190 ºC. Place a sheet of plastic wrap tightly over the bowl and let the dough rise on top of the preheating oven or in a warm, draft-free corner for 1 hour.
Lightly grease a 1.5 quart glass loaf pan, and place dough in it.
Bake until the bread is lightly browned on all sides, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
1 loaf of stale* Primal Cravings bread, cut into small cubes (*to make the bread stale, cut the bread into cubes and let dry overnight, or toast the cubes in oven at 350 ºF until the bread is about as crunchy as croutons)
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed (450 g)
1 leek, finely chopped
8 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced (230 g)
1/2 cup finely chopped celery (75 g)
8 ounces chopped frozen spinach, defrosted and well squeezed to remove moisture (230 g)
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley (60 ml)
2 eggs, whisked
1 cup chicken broth (240 ml)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (2.5 ml)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper (a pinch)
Put the sausage in a large saucepan with a little oil over medium-high heat, breaking the sausage into small pieces as it cooks. When the sausage is done, transfer it from the saucepan to a large bowl, leaving any grease in the saucepan.
In the same saucepan, saute the leek, mushrooms and celery until soft. (If there’s not enough grease from the sausage, add olive oil first)
Preheat oven to 350 °F/177 °C.
Butter a baking dish and set aside.
To the large bowl of sausage, stir in the leek, mushroom, celery, spinach, parsley and eggs. Add the cubes of bread, then the chicken broth, salt and pepper, mixing really well to cover.
Spread the stuffing out in a thin even layer in the baking dish. Cover with foil, bake 25 minutes. Remove foil. Raise heat to 450 °F/232 °C and bake until the top is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Serve alongside turkey and enjoy!