Instant Pot Turkey Breast

instant pot turkey breast | turkey breast instant pot | pressure cooker turkey breast | turkey instant pot | instant pot turkey gravy

Step-by-Step Guide on how to cook Instant Pot Turkey Breast. Tender Moist pressure cooker turkey breast with rich turkey gravy and buttery mashed potatoes. Enjoy this tasty easy one pot Thanksgiving turkey dinner or Christmas turkey dinner.

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pressure cooker turkey breast

Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays are a time to gather with our loved ones for the big Turkey feast. It’s also a time to take a breather from the hustle and bustle in life and reflect “What am I thankful for this year?”

Give thanks with a grateful heart.

Instant Pot Turkey Breast

When we crafted this Turkey Breast Instant Pot recipe, our goal is to make sure you can enjoy a tender, moist, and flavorful turkey breast.

Say No to dry, tough, stringy Cardboard Turkey Breast!

We developed this Instant Pot turkey breast recipe with the option for you to turn it into a one pot meal. You can easily cook turkey breast, make homemade turkey gravy, and buttery mashed potatoes in the same pot at the same time.

This way, instead of cooking a whole turkey, you can enjoy a simple but traditional turkey dinner. Easy doesn’t mean skimping on flavors and deliciousness though!

No matter what you’re going through, we hope you can enjoy a tasty thanksgiving meal or Christmas dinner. 

Turkey Breast Instant Pot Experiment – Brine or No Brine

Is it worthwhile to prepare ahead and wet brine the Turkey Breast?

Time for another Amy + Jacky’s Test Kitchen experiment!

We tested pressure cooking wet brine Turkey Breast vs. non-brine Turkey Breast in Instant Pot. To find whether there are noticeable differences in texture and taste.

test non-brined and wet brined turkey breasts in Instant Pot

The answer: YES! Brined Instant Pot Turkey Breasts is a clear winner being more juicy, tender, and flavorful.

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Can I Skip Brining the Turkey Breast?

Yes. If you don’t have time or due to other reasons, you can skip this wet brining step. Some readers skipped this brining step and their turkey breasts still turned out flavorful. You can read about their experiences in the comments section below.

How to Cook Instant Pot Turkey Breast

Prepare ingredients for cooking turkey breast in Instant Pot.

turkey breast ingredients

Turkey Breast

We developed this turkey breast Instant Pot recipe with 3” thick, fresh bone-in turkey breasts. The one in the above photo is an approximately 3 lbs turkey breast.

Boneless Turkey Breast: If you’re substituting with boneless turkey breast, reduce the bone-in turkey breast pressure cooking time by a minute.

Frozen Turkey Breast: It’s best to completely thaw your turkey breast before pressure cooking. This helps prevent overcooking the outer layer.

Brined or Pre-Seasoned Turkey Breasts: If your packaged turkey breast was already brined or pre-seasoned (i.e. Butterball turkey breast), skip the brining step. You may need to skip the seasoning on the onion and garlic depending on how salty is your pre-seasoned turkey breast.

Other Ingredients

Unsalted Turkey Stock or Unsalted Chicken Stock: We develop recipes with unsalted ingredients so we can better control the flavors. If you’re substituting it with salted stock, keep in mind that the sodium level can vary a lot between different brands. Always taste and adjust accordingly.

Sherry Wine: You can substitute it with Port wine.

Salt For Brining: You can use any salt for the brine. Make sure you accurately weigh the amount with a kitchen scale.

Optional Pot-in-Pot Mashed Potatoes: If you want to make the PIP mashed potatoes, make sure your turkey breast is small enough to fit in your Instant Pot laying flat. This allows you to have enough room to layer the bowl of potatoes on top of the turkey breast without problems closing the lid. 

Tools for Turkey Breast Instant Pot Recipe

For Optional PIP Mashed Potatoes

Step 1

Wet Brine Turkey Breast for Moist Turkey

Amy + Jacky’s Brining Tips!

Brined or Pre-Seasoned Turkey Breasts: If you’re using a pre-seasoned or brined turkey breast, skip this brining step.

Can I Skip Brining the Turkey Breast? Yes. If you don’t have time, you can skip this brining step. It’ll still turn out flavorful.

Instant Pot Turkey Breast Recipe (Pressure Cooker Turkey Breast): wet brine turkey breast with salted water for moist turkey meat

Depending on the size of your turkey breast, mix “90g salt with 1500ml cold running tap water” or “120g salt with 2000ml cold running tap water” in a large mixing bowl.

Make sure the salt has fully dissolved.

Fully submerge the turkey breast in the salted water, then place it in the fridge for at least 4 to 8 hours.

Amy + Jacky’s Tips! Brining turkey breast for over 8 hours may result in a ham-like meat texture.
Step 2

Sauté Onion, Garlic, Celery, Carrot

Heat up Instant Pot by using the “Sauté More” function. Wait until the Instant Pot says “HOT”.

Amy + Jacky’s Tip! Make sure the Instant Pot is as hot as it can be to induce a Maillard reaction.

Instant Pot Saute More

Add 1 tablespoon (15ml) olive oil in Instant Pot. Make sure the oil is coating the whole bottom of the pot.

Add the diced onion in Instant Pot, then sauté for roughly 2 minutes until softened.

saute onions

Add in minced garlic, then sauté for another 30 seconds until fragrant.

Season it with kosher salt and ground black pepper.

Add in chopped celery and carrot, then sauté until the vegetables are slightly browned (roughly 5 to 7 minutes).

saute vegetables

Step 3

Deglaze Instant Pot

Add a dash of sherry wine in Instant Pot, then deglaze by scrubbing the flavorful brown bits off the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon.

deglaze

Step 4

Add Turkey Breast in Instant Pot

Add 1 cup (250ml) unsalted chicken stock, 2 bay leaves, a pinch of dried rosemary, a pinch of dried thyme, and a pinch of dried sage in the Instant Pot. Give it a quick stir.

Amy + Jacky’s Tips! Rub the dried herbs with your fingers to “activate” their flavors and aroma.

Carefully place the bone-in turkey breast in Instant Pot. With the turkey’s skin side up and the bone submerged in the liquid.

turkey breast in Instant Pot

Step 5

Optional – Add Pot-in-Pot Potatoes (If you’re making mashed potatoes)

Note: Make sure your turkey breast is small enough to fit in your Instant Pot laying flat. This allows you to have room to layer the bowl of potatoes on top of the turkey breast without problems closing the lid.

Place a stainless steel bowl on top of the bone-in turkey breast, then add halved Yukon gold potatoes in the bowl.

pot-in-pot potatoes

Step 6

Pressure Cook Turkey Breast

Amy + Jacky’s Tips – Best Turkey Breast Cooking Time! The best pressure cooking time depends on your turkey breasts’ size. Make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly (i.e. add more cooking time for bigger turkey breasts), test, then measure the meat’s temperature before serving.

Pressure Cook at High Pressure for 30 minutes

With Venting Knob in Venting Position, close the lid, then turn Venting Knob to Sealing Position.

Instant Pot Turkey Breast Cooking Time: Pressure cook at High Pressure for 28 to 34 minutes, then Natural Release for 15 minutes.

After 15 minutes of natural release, turn the Venting Knob to Venting Position to release the remaining pressure.

Open the lid carefully.

Step 7

Make Mashed Potatoes

Remove the bowl of potatoes from Instant Pot, then place all the potatoes in a large mixing bowl.

Mash the potatoes with a fork or masher.

mash potatoes

Add 1 – 2 tbsp (14g – 28g) unsalted butter, 30g grated Parmesan cheese (optional), and 100ml milk or cream.

Continue mashing and mixing until desired consistency.

Season with kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste.

Amy + Jacky’s Tips! For creamier mashed potatoes, use more whole milk or cream.
Step 8

Check Turkey Breast Temperature

Use a meat thermometer to make sure the thickest part of the turkey breast registers over 161°F (72°C).

measure instant pot bone in turkey breast temperature

Remove bone-in turkey breast in Instant Pot, and set it aside on a chopping board to rest for 15 minutes.

Amy + Jacky’s Tips! The carryover heat will continue to cook the turkey breast to 165°F (74°C).
Step 9

Make Instant Pot Turkey Gravy

Heat up Instant Pot by pressing the Saute button.

Mix 2½ tablespoons cornstarch with 3 tablespoons cold water. Then, stir the cornstarch mixture into the turkey gravy in Instant Pot one third at a time until desired thickness.

instant pot turkey gravy

Taste the Instant Pot turkey gravy, then season it with salt and ground black pepper if necessary.

Step 10

Optional – Brown Turkey Breast Skin

Pat dry the bone-in turkey breast skin with paper towels.

pat dry turkey breast skin with paper towel

Mix 1 tablespoon honey with 1½ tablespoons regular soy sauce, then apply it on the bone-in turkey breast skin.

apply honey soy sauce on turkey breast

Use a blowtorch (Jacky said because it’s fun to play with fire sometimes 😛 ) or place turkey breast under the broiler for a few minutes to brown the skin.

use blowtorch to crisp up turkey skin

Step 11

Serve Instant Pot Turkey Breast

Thinly slice the pressure cooker turkey breast at an angle.

Drizzle the rich turkey gravy over the turkey breast and mashed potatoes.

Serve the tender juicy Instant Pot Turkey Breast immediately!

turkey breast instant pot

What to Serve with Turkey Breast

Turkey breast is one of the centerpieces of traditional Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.

Thanksgiving turkey is usually served with turkey gravy, Instant Pot Stuffing, Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce, Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes, Instant Pot Green Beans, corn, pumpkin pie, and dinner rolls.

For a traditional holiday dinner menu, you can also serve tasty appetizers or side dishes like Instant Pot Sweet Potatoes, Instant Pot Mac and Cheese, Instant Pot Roasted Potatoes, Instant Pot Carrots, Instant Pot Deviled Eggs, or cornbread.

For a traditional Christmas dinner, you can also serve your Christmas Turkey with prime rib, Instant Pot Roast Beef, Instant Pot Ham, rack of lamb, apple pie, Christmas pudding, Panettone, or fruitcake.

Enjoy Tender Moist Flavorful Instant Pot Turkey Breast!

5 from 16 votes

Instant Pot Turkey Breast

Author: Amy + Jacky
Step-by-Step: How to cook Tender, Moist, Flavorful Instant Pot Turkey Breast. Easy to make pressure cooker turkey breast with rich turkey gravy and buttery mashed potatoes. Enjoy this tasty one pot turkey dinner for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
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Servings 4 - 6
Total Time 1 hr 20 mins
Rate this Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 (~2.7lbs/1224g) bone-in turkey breast , 3” thick
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) olive oil
  • 1 (197g) medium onion , diced
  • 3 (10g) garlic cloves , minced
  • 1 stalk (92g) celery , chopped
  • 2 (112g) medium carrots , chopped
  • A dash of sherry wine
  • 1 cup (250ml) unsalted chicken stock (or unsalted turkey stock)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • A pinch of dried rosemary
  • A pinch of dried thyme
  • A pinch of dried sage
  • Kosher salt & ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • tablespoon regular soy sauce

Thickener:

  • tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons cold water

Wet Brine:

  • 90 grams (3.17oz) salt + 1500 ml (6 cups) cold running water or 120 grams (4.23 oz) salt + 2000 ml (8 cups) cold running water

Mashed Potatoes:

  • 4 - 5 (~2.5lbs or 1100g) Yukon gold potatoes (or Russet potatoes) , halved
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons (14g - 28g) unsalted butter
  • Optional: 30 grams freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 100 ml milk or cream
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste

Share this Recipe so We can create more yummy recipes for you.  Thank you 🙂

Instructions 

  • Wet Brine for Moist Turkey: Depending on the size of your turkey breast, mix "90g (3.17oz) salt with 1500ml (6 cups) of cold running water" or "120g (4.23oz) salt with 2000ml (8 cups) cold running water" in a large mixing bowl. Make sure the salt has fully dissolved. Fully submerge the turkey breast in the salted water, then place it in the fridge for at least 4 to 8 hours.
  • Sauté Onion, Garlic, Celery, Carrot: Heat up Instant Pot by using Sauté More function. Wait until the indicator says "HOT". Add 1 tbsp (15ml) olive oil in Instant Pot. Make sure the oil is coating the whole bottom of the pot.
    Add diced onion in Instant Pot, then sauté for roughly 2 minutes until softened. Add in minced garlic, then sauté for another 30 seconds until fragrant. Season with kosher salt and ground black pepper.
    Add in chopped celery and carrot. Sauté until the vegetables are slightly browned (roughly 5 to 7 minutes).
  • Deglaze: Add a dash of sherry wine in Instant Pot, then deglaze by scrubbing the flavorful brown bits off the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon.
  • Add Turkey Breast: Add 1 cup (250ml) unsalted chicken stock, 2 bay leaves, a pinch of dried rosemary, a pinch of dried thyme, and a pinch of dried sage in Instant Pot. Give it a quick stir. Carefully place the bone-in turkey breast in Instant Pot. With the turkey's skin side up and the bone submerged in the liquid.
  • Optional - Add Pot-in-Pot Potatoes (If Making Mashed Potatoes): Place a stainless steel bowl on top of the turkey breast, then add in halved Yukon gold potatoes in the bowl.
  • Pressure Cook Turkey Breast: With Venting Knob in Venting Position, close the lid, then turn Venting Knob to Sealing Position. Close lid and pressure cook at High Pressure for 28 to 34 minutes, then Natural Release for 15 minutes. Turn Venting Knob to Venting Position to release the remaining pressure. Open the lid carefully.
  • Make Mashed Potatoes: Remove the bowl of potatoes, then place all the potatoes in a large mixing bowl. Mash the potatoes with a fork or masher. Add 1 – 2 tbsp (14g – 28g) unsalted butter, 30g grated Parmesan cheese (optional), and 100ml milk or cream. Continue mashing and mixing until desired consistency. Season with kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste.
    For creamier mashed potatoes, use more whole milk or cream.
  • Check Turkey Breast Temperature: Use a meat thermometer to make sure the thickest part of the turkey breast registers over 161°F (72°C). Remove turkey breast and set it aside on a chopping board to rest for 15 minutes. The carryover heat will continue to cook the turkey breast to 165°F (74°C).
  • Make Turkey Gravy: Heat up Instant Pot by pressing the Saute button. Mix 2½ tbsp cornstarch with 3 tbsp cold water. Stir the cornstarch mixture into the turkey gravy one third at a time until desired thickness. Taste gravy, then season it with salt and ground black pepper if necessary.
  • Optional - Brown Turkey Breast Skin: Pat dry the turkey breast skin with paper towels. Mix 1 tbsp honey with 1½ tbsp regular soy sauce, then apply it on the turkey breast skin. Use a blowtorch or place turkey breast under broiler for a few minutes to brown the skin.
  • Serve: Thinly slice the turkey breast at an angle. Drizzle turkey gravy over the turkey breast & mashed potatoes. Serve immediately. Enjoy a wonderful Thanksgiving and Christmas~

Notes

1. Best Pressure Cooking Time: The best cooking time depends on the size of your turkey breasts. Be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly (i.e. add more cooking time for bigger turkey breasts), test, then measure the meat's temperature before serving.
2. Turkey Breast
  • Boneless Turkey Breast: Reduce the bone-in turkey breast pressure cooking time by a minute.
  • Frozen Turkey Breast: It's best to completely thaw your turkey breast before pressure cooking. This helps prevent overcooking the outer layer.
  • Brined or Pre-Seasoned Turkey Breasts: If your packaged turkey breast was already brined or pre-seasoned (i.e. Butterball turkey breast), skip the brining step. You may need to skip the seasoning on the onion and garlic depending on how salty is your pre-seasoned turkey breast.
  • Brining Turkey Breast for Over 8 Hours: It may result in a ham-like meat texture.
  • Salt For Brining: You can use any salt for the brine. Make sure you accurately weigh the amount with a kitchen scale.
  • Can I Skip Brining the Turkey Breast? Yes. If you don't have time, you can skip brining the turkey breast. It'll still turn out flavorful.
3. Optional Pot-in-Pot Potatoes: If you want to make the PIP mashed potatoes, make sure your turkey breast is small enough to fit in your Instant Pot laying flat. This allows you to have room to layer the bowl of potatoes on top of the turkey breast without problems closing the lid. 
4. Unsalted Stock: We develop recipes with unsalted ingredients so we can better control the flavors. If you’re substituting it with salted stock, keep in mind that the sodium level can vary a lot between different brands. Always taste and adjust accordingly.
5. Sherry Wine Substitute: You can substitute it with Port wine.
6. Rub the Dried Herbs: Rub the dried herbs with your fingers to “activate” their flavors and aroma.
Rate Amy + Jacky's Recipe: If you've tried our recipe, rate the recipe in the Comments section. Thank you!
Calories: 255kcal
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: American
Keyword: boneless turkey breast instant pot, instant pot bone in turkey breast, instant pot turkey, instant pot turkey breast, instant pot turkey gravy, pressure cooker turkey breast, turkey breast instant pot, turkey in instant pot

Nutrition

Calories: 255kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 41g | Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 99mg | Sodium: 584mg | Potassium: 638mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 3225IU | Vitamin C: 4.5mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 1.3mg

Other Instant Pot Turkey Recipes

Instant Pot Turkey Breast | Turkey Breast Instant Pot | Pressure Cooker Turkey Breast
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