My Slow Cooker Turkey Crown recipe is perfect for a stress-free Christmas! The turkey breast turns out perfectly moist and deliciously tender and the drippings make the best gravy. So easy and perfect for serving a smaller group while freeing up your oven.
This recipe is Low Carb, Gluten Free and suitable for the Keto Diet. Suitable for Slimming World with some minor tweaks.
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I shared my recipe for Roast Turkey Crown last November – little did I know so many of us would choose not to roast an entire turkey in 2020...
And while the roast turkey breast is undeniably yummy, this Crockpot Turkey is actually so much easier and, dare I say, tastier. Same goes for mash – have you made Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes? A revelation!
Using a slow cooker for your turkey results in perfectly tender turkey breast meat – such an easy way to keep your turkey from drying out! You also free up your oven for any side dishes you want to make and you don’t have to baste…
WHY CHOOSE A TURKEY CROWN
A turkey crown is the turkey breast with legs and wings removed. In the UK the breasts are usually sold on the bone, skin on. In the US you can find turkey breast on the bone or boneless.
Making a turkey breast instead of a whole bird is a great idea you are serving fewer people this year. It’s also cheaper, takes up less freezer / fridge space and less intimidating for newbie cooks!
If you allow for a 250g (8.8 oz) serving per person, a 2kg (4.4 lbs) turkey crown will serve 3 to 5, while a slightly larger 2.5kg (5.5lbs) crown will feed 6 to 8. Use the same principle when buying turkey breasts (or breast halves) perhaps allowing for some leftovers too!
HOW TO DEFROST A TURKEY CROWN
Allowing enough time for your turkey to thaw is the only slightly tricky part! Place the crown/ breasts, in their packaging, in a pyrex dish (in case of leaks) and put in the fridge.
A 2kg / 4 pound turkey will take at least 24 hours to defrost in the fridge, possibly longer, I allowed 36 hours for mine.
If you are in a hurry you can defrost the turkey at room temperature, aiming for 2 hours per kilo (approx. 2 pounds). Check the underside of the turkey – if it is covered in ice crystals, you will need to leave it to thaw for a bit longer.
Remove all the packaging and discard any collected liquid before cooking. Make sure you wash your hands and any utensils, cutting boards etc. whenever handling raw poultry.
SLOW COOKER TURKEY INGREDIENTS
You only need a handful of ingredients to make a perfectly juicy crockpot turkey breast. The vegetables provide a bed for your turkey, adding flavor to the juices which in turn make an excellent turkey gravy.
Check the turkey fits into your crockpot before attempting this recipe – a 5.6L slow cooker is roomy enough for a 2kg (4.4 lbs) turkey crown, but it might be a squeeze if it is larger. I always recommend using a meat thermometer for best results.
- Turkey crown bone in and skin on or two or more turkey breast halves, fully defrosted if frozen
- Unsalted butter (leave out for a SW version)
- Onion and garlic powder, lemon zest, paprika, mixed Italian herbs, salt and pepper
- Onions, skin on, halved. The skin will add some color to the juices, you can remove it if preferred
- Carrots and celery
- Parsley stalks, bay leaves
- Chicken stock cube
- Dry white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or dry Vermouth. A small bottle of wine, such as those served in-flight, is perfect if you don’t want to open a full bottle. Replace wine with chicken broth (stock) if you prefer
HOW TO COOK SLOW COOKER TURKEY CROWN (or BREASTS)
Full measurements and instructions can be found on the printable recipe card at the bottom of the page. Please take a look at the steps and video before attempting this recipe!
Gently loosen the skin from your turkey breast using your fingers. Push some butter under the skin and rub the rest over the breast.
Combine the onion and garlic granules, lemon zest, mixed herbs, paprika, salt and pepper and rub over the turkey, on both sides.
Add the vegetables, herbs and bay leaves in a 6L slow cooker.
Place the turkey over them, skin side up. Add the wine and crumbled stock cube. Cover and cook for 3 hours on HIGH, or cook until the turkey registers an internal temperature of 75C (165F) on a meat thermometer tested at the thickest part of the breast. The meat juices should run clear.
Transfer the turkey onto a platter and tent with foil, resting for up to 30 minutes. Your turkey crown will look a little pale due to the moist slow cooking. You can place it under the grill /broiler for a few minutes to brown the skin, basting with butter, if you like.
THE BEST TURKEY GRAVY
I have used Xanthan Gum to make a Keto friendly gravy. You can use cornstarch /cornflour to thicken the gravy instead if you like – take a look at the recipe card notes.
Prepare the gravy while your slow cooker turkey breast is having a rest. Strain the liquid collected in the crock pot into a saucepan and discard the vegetables.
Add hot chicken (or beef stock you prefer a darker gravy), Worcestershire sauce, mustard, butter and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add the Xanthan gum or cornflour slurry and continue cooking, using a balloon whisk to stir, for a further 10 minutes, or until the gravy starts to thicken slightly (it will thicken even more as it cools).
SERVING YOUR TURKEY CROWN
Slice your turkey and arrange on a platter on a bed of citrus slices and herbs for a festive presentation. Drizzle with some of the gravy and serve immediately.
COMPLETE YOUR TURKEY MEAL
These side dishes are perfect for rounding off your Thanksgiving or Christmas turkey feast!
- Creamy Brussels Sprouts with Bacon (keto friendly)
- Scalloped potatoes
- Greek Lemon Potatoes
- Honey roasted squash and sweet potatoes
Slow Cooker Turkey Crown with Best Ever Gravy
For the turkey
- 2 kg (4.4 pounds) turkey crown, bone in, skin on or 2 turkey breast halves, skin on
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter , softened
- 1 lemon zest only
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp mixed dried Italian herbs
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 2 onions , skin on, halved
- 4 celery ribs , cut into thirds
- 4 carrots
- 2 bay leaves
- Handful parsley stalks
- Sprig fresh thyme
- 1 chicken stock cube , crumbled
- 120 ml (½ cup) dry white wine or vermouth (sub with chicken stock)
For the gravy
- All the liquid from the crock pot strained
- 480 ml (2 cups) chicken or beef broth
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp Dijon or English mustard
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- ½ tsp lemon juice
- ½ tsp Xanthan Gum see notes for alternative
To dress (optional)
- Orange and lemon slices
- Fresh herbs such as thyme , rosemary and sage
Prepare the turkey
- Gently loosen the skin from your turkey breast using your fingers. Push some butter under the skin and rub the rust over the breast.
- Combine the onion and garlic granules, mixed herbs, paprika, salt and pepper and rub over the turkey, seasoning on both sides.
- Add the vegetables, herbs and bay leaves in a 6L slow cooker. Place the turkey over them, skin side up. Add the wine and crumbled stock cube.
- Cover and cook for 3 hours on HIGH, or cook until the turkey registers an internal temperature of 75C (165F) on a meat thermometer tested at the thickest part of the breast. The meat juices will run clear.
- Transfer the turkey onto a platter and tent with foil, resting for up to 30 minutes, while you prepare the gravy.
Crisp the skin (optional)
- Your turkey crown will look a little pale due to the most slow cooking. You can place it under a hot grill /broiler for a few minutes to brown the skin, basting with butter, so that it gets a bit of colour. Don't overdo it however – you risk drying out your lovely moist turkey breast!
Make the gravy
- Strain the liquid collected in the crock pot into a saucepan and discard the vegetables.
- Add hot chicken or beef stock, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, butter and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the Xanthan gum or cornflour slurry and continue cooking, using a balloon whisk to stir, for a further 10 minutes, or until the gravy starts to thicken slightly (it will thicken even more as it cools).
- Dilute one tablespoon of cornstarch (cornflour) in two tablespoons cold water to make a slurry.
- Drain the liquid from the crock pot into a saucepan, add hot stock, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, butter and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Stir in the slurry and cook until gravy thickens