Friday, November 4, 2011

Apple Butter Basted Turkey

It's never too early to starting thinking about Thanksgiving dinner and how you're going to cook that delicious turkey for your family.  Last year I smoked a turkey on the Big Green Egg and this year I'm planning on using a slightly different recipe to grill my turkey.  I decided to give it a test run a couple of weeks ago just to make sure I had all the kinks worked out before Thanksgiving Day.  This recipe came from the December 2008 Cuisine at Home magazine. 

I started with a frozen turkey breast.  This recipe would work just as well with a whole turkey.  (For a whole turkey, stuff the bird with the Sweet Potato Stuffing instead of draping the breast over the stuffing.) 

Apple-Butter Basted Turkey Breast with Sweet Potato Stuffing
6-7 Pound turkey breast             ½ cup sherry
1 Tablespoon butter                     ½ loaf French bread, cubed
1 Tablespoon olive oil                 ½ cup chicken broth
½ onion, chopped                       ¼ cup parsley, chopped
1 sweet potato, cubed                  ½ teaspoon sage
½ cup celery, chopped                4 Tablespoons butter
8 ounces sliced mushrooms       ¼ cup apple jelly

Melt 1 T. butter and oil in skillet.  Add onion, potato and celery – cook 5 min.


Add mushrooms and cook 5 min.

Add sherry and cook until liquid is evaporated.


Transfer to bowl with  bread, broth, parsley and sage.  Toss.

Shape dressing into football shape in a 9x13 pan.

Drape turkey over dressing.

Combine apple jelly and remaining 4 T. butter in saucepan.

Whisk over low heat until melted.  

I set up my egg with the plate setter turned upside down and the grate sitting on top of it.

I basted the turkey every 30 minutes with the apple butter and I photographed it every time I basted.  This is what my turkey breast looked like when I first put it on the egg. 

30 minutes into cooking.

1 hour of cooking time.

hour and a half on the egg.

2 hours of cooking time.

2 1/2 hours on the Big Green Egg.

3 hours of cooking and smelling fantastic.

3 1/2 hours of cooking

I kept the temperature at 300 to cook my turkey.  I brought the turkey inside after 3 1/2 hours and tented it with foil so that the juices inside the bird could redistribute.  It rested for about 30 minutes before I sliced it.

I transferred the turkey to a serving platter and scooped the sweet potato stuffing into a round casserole dish.  I put the dish under the broiler for a few minutes to brown the top layer of stuffing. 

The turkey was delicious.  The meat was tender and moist and the stuffing had absorbed the apple butter basting sauce which made it truly decadent.  There was plenty of stuffing left over because my kids are not big stuffing eaters so I packaged up the leftovers and put them in my freezer to save for Thanksgiving.

If you are looking for a new way to prepare your Thanksgiving turkey, you need to give this recipe a try.  It is really good and it's a huge help to have the turkey and the stuffing on the Big Green Egg and the oven free to make the rest of the meal. 

If you have any questions about this meal or any of my other blog posts, send me a comment and I will do my best to find you an answer.

Bon Appetit!


  1. When did you use the apple jelly? I don't see it the in the step-by-step. I'm thinking you threw it in with the baste?

  2. This looks great, planning on giving it a try today.

    The butter in the recipe looks a little confusing. You list butter twice for a total of 5 tbs. Using 2 in with the vegetables leaving 3. Are you using 3 in the glaze?

    Following this recipe, this produces stuffing for how many people, if you had to estimate?


  3. I apologize for the confusion about the butter in the recipe. I melted 1 Tablespoon of butter to melt the cook the onions, potatoes and celery. I combined the remaining 4 Tablespoons of butter with the apple jelly for the glaze.

    The stuffing recipe yields about 4 cups of stuffing. (approximately 8 servings)

    Good luck and let me know how it turns out.

  4. This dish was awesome. I used a commercial apple butter instead of apple jelly and red wine instead of sherry. I wrapped the meat in AL foil for the last hour. So juicy!

    I cooked a whole chicken and used my paella pan.

    Thanks for sharing

  5. So glad your turkey turned out juicy. I am goingo to try your variation of the recipe soon. Sounds delicious.