When I shared the Special Turkey Breast crockpot recipe the other day, I mentioned I had an even easier recipe for a Traditional Turkey Breast. This one is also made in a slow cooker.
The good news is that this recipe is so easy, so gluten free easily (gfe), that you won’t even believe it (and, perhaps, will thank me profusely once you make it). The bad news is that I don’t have a photo for you … until Thanksgiving.
I’ve been making this turkey breast since I first hosted Thanksgiving several years ago to give my mother a break. I had no intentions of roasting a whole turkey because I knew most of it would not get eaten. So I looked online for a suitable recipe. When I found the following recipe with two ingredients (the turkey breast plus one more), I was very skeptical to say the least. But, when I made it, I was so pleased and everyone raved over it. Now it’s my standard turkey breast recipe. (Members of my support group have also happily added it to their holiday cooking repertoire.) I’ll be making both this Traditional Turkey Breast and the Special Turkey Breast on Thanksgiving.
- One turkey breast, any size (just be sure it fits in your slow cooker)
- One stick (1/2 cup) regular butter (not unsalted) or non-dairy equivalent, melted
- Remove any packaging for the turkey breast carefully. (I’ve been surprised by gravy packets before and I’ve been grateful that I didn’t accidentally puncture them with my kitchen shears.)
- Rinse turkey breast. Remove any contents from cavity of breast. (If gizzards and liver are included, you can cook those or freeze for another use later.)
- Pat dry and place in crockpot.
- Melt butter.
- Pour butter evenly over turkey breast. (DO NOT add anything else. Nothing. NO additional seasonings. NO water. NOTHING else.)
- Cook 4 to 4½ hours on high or 8 to 8 ½ hours on low; cooking on low yields a more tender flavorful breast in this case, I believe. (If frozen, be sure to remove anything in the cavity and cook for about 10 hours or so.)
- This turkey breast will be perfectly moist and perfectly seasoned. The skin even browns in my crockpot. I use a 6-qt oval Crockpot SmartPot.
Now for part two—the Surprise Stuffing. Luckily, I do have photos for this dish, lots of them.
A little background … I saw this basic recipe on the celiac listserv a few years ago. The individuals who posted the recipe raved over it. So I saved it to my computer and even printed it out, but I’ve never been a huge stuffing fan and when “push came to shove” with all my Thanksgiving cooking and limited time each year, I always thought I’d make it later. Well, later never came. Until now. Did I mention that folks raved over this stuffing? Did I mention that some said it tasted just like Stove-Top stuffing? Hmmm, well, that could be a plus or a minus depending on one’s purist views regarding stuffing. When I was eating a prepared stuffing, I personally always liked Pepperidge Farm stuffing back in the day. But, I digress … a bit. Did I mention that this stuffing recipe uses no bread of any type? The main ingredient is a surprise … a snack food that many people keep on hand, and a naturally gluten-free snack food (yippee!), but one that everybody loves—corn tortilla chips. Yes, that’s correct. That bag of Tostitos in your pantry will be transformed into your new favorite stuffing!
I don’t know why I waited so long to try this recipe. It’s excellent and so easy to make. It’s also naturally dairy-free and just requires a few ingredients. Mr. GFE doesn’t usually like stuffing, but he’s in love with this recipe. He said it almost tastes like Susie’s Crab Casserole. I don’t think this casserole tastes like crabmeat, but it does have a similar texture and consistency and is really good. I ate this small bowl full right after it came out of the oven; I never eat stuffing like that. Hey, maybe it could be a Poor Man’s “Crab” Casserole—ideal for the budget and a version for the non-seafood lover. Setting that consideration aside, I’m looking forward to serving this to Son when he comes home tomorrow and making more to serve my family on Thanksgiving. I’m even looking forward to using it in another recipe that I haven’t made since going gluten free—a chicken and stuffing casserole—but I’ll wait a few weeks. I think I’ll be “poultry’d” out for a bit after Thursday.
Here’s the recipe as I made it today. Note that while Tostitos contain no gluten ingredients, they are not made in a dedicated facility or on a dedicated line. Frito-Lay cleans their lines between processing their different products, but please use your own judgment regarding using Tostitos if you are gluten free. Of course, any other tortilla chips that you like and consider safe can be used instead. I would really like to try this with the blue tortilla chips. Blue stuffing … now that would be fun. (No Smurf jokes, please.) Okay, okay—here’s the recipe.
- One large bag of tortilla chips (about 13 ounces)
- 1 cup finely chopped onion
- ¾ – 1 cup finely chopped celery (depending upon how much you like celery)
- 4 cups (32 ounces) chicken broth or vegetable broth (I made mine using Better than Bouillon; canned gluten-free broth or homemade stock would also work fine; see notes if using vegetable broth)
- 2 tsp poultry seasoning (mine includes thyme, salt, oregano, mustard powder, red pepper, black pepper, and sage, but you could simply use sage, thyme, or other seasoning or combination of choice)
- Additional ingredients if desired, like sausage, mushrooms, chestnuts, etc.
- Pour tortilla chips into a large bowl. (Do not break tortilla chips into smaller pieces. I did that not knowing any better and it’s really unnecessary. Once softened, the tortilla chips will naturally break into smaller pieces.)
- Pour broth over tortilla chips. Stir so that all tortilla chips are covered or moistened by broth. Let “soak” for 30 minutes.
- Stir in onion, celery, seasonings, and any optional ingredients.
- Pour into lightly greased casserole dish. A 9 x 13 glass dish would be ideal. (I halved the recipe and used a smaller oval casserole dish for my test run.)
- Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. (If you like a drier stuffing, a slightly higher temperature might be a better choice.) If necessary, you can turn the broiler on for the last few minutes to brown the top, but please be cautious. (Dish should be far from broiler itself and only cooked at this temperature for a short time.)
Surprise Stuffing (Shown with Special Turkey Breast and Corn)
See this obnoxious little turkey guy. Okay, he doesn’t look that obnoxious .. goofy, for sure … but wind him up and you’ll see and hear how obnoxious he is—a singing, dancing turkey. I went away on a business trip in mid-November a few years back and came home to find this turkey on the dining room table … and, evidence of a party. It seems Mr. GFE and Son had a little oyster roast with friends and family while I was gone and this was one of the “hosts” gifts they received. (I was only a bit dismayed that they had it in a somewhat untidy house and screened porch. LOL) The young and the old love this strange little turkey, so we keep him around for entertainment purposes.
Enjoy your turkey (the slow cooker one, not the super silly one) and stuffing! Just think … all the time you save by NOT slaving away in the kitchen can be spent chatting and catching up with family and friends.
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