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CrockPot Turkey Breast with Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy

Cooking a turkey breast in the slow cooker is a great option when you have a small crowd for Thanksgiving, but Low-Carb CrockPot Turkey Breast is easy to make for dinner any time of year. This recipe also has tips for lower-carb and gluten-free turkey gravy, and the recipe is also low-glycemic and dairy-free. Use the Recipes-by-Diet-Type Index to find more recipes like this one.

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How to Cook a Turkey Breast in the Crockpot and Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy [found on KalynsKitchen.com]

Cooking a turkey breast in the slow cooker is a great option if you’re making Thanksgiving dinner for just a few people, and I’ve been cooking turkey this way for years now. But even though I’m updating this recipe for CrockPot Turkey Breast with with Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy while everyone’s thinking about Carb-Conscious Thanksgiving Recipes, this is a recipe that’s easy enough to enjoy turkey for dinner any time of year.

And I think using the slow cooker is such a brilliant idea for Thanksgiving. I’ve already gushed about how much I love Spicy CrockPot Sweet Potatoes, which is a recipe I’ve also loved for years. And I shared my Top Ten Ideas for Slow Cooker Turkey Breast and 50+ Ideas for a Slow Cooker Thanksgiving at Slow Cooker from Scratch.  So if you’re making a big dinner this year, check out those recipes and let the slow cooker free up some space in the oven.

(How to Cook a Turkey Breast in the Crockpot and Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy was updated with better photos November 2015. Happy turkey eating everyone!)

Watch the slide show video to see the steps for this recipe. You can see more slide show videos on My You Tube Channel.

How to Cook a Turkey Breast in the Crockpot and Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy [found on KalynsKitchen.com]
Trim skin on the turkey breast and rub the outside with thyme and sage. Heat olive oil in a frying pan and brown the turkey well. (Don’t rush this step.) Put browned turkey into the slow cooker, then cook the chicken or turkey stock in the frying pan for a couple of minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan to get all the browned bits. Put that liquid over the turkey breast; then put onion, carrots, and celery around the turkey. Cook on high for 2.5-3 hours, or on low for 5-6 hours, or until the meat thermometer reaches the safe minimum temperature for turkey breast.

How to Cook a Turkey Breast in the Crockpot and Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy [found on KalynsKitchen.com]
When turkey has reached the desired temperature take out the breast and put it on a cutting board while you make the gravy. (You can cover with foil to keep warm.) Strain the liquid from the crockpot into a pan, add a little Penzeys Turkey Soup Base if desired, and simmer to reduce until it has a good turkey flavor. Turn down the heat, mix the arrowroot powder (or thickener of your choice) with cold water to make a slurry, and whisk that into the hot liquid, turning off the heat as soon as it thickens if you’re using arrowroot.

How to Cook a Turkey Breast in the Crockpot and Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy [found on KalynsKitchen.com]

Slice the turkey and serve hot, with gravy.

Crockpot Turkey Breast with Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Gravy
(Makes about 4.5 pounds of cooked turkey and 2 cups gravy, about 6 servings. Recipe created by Kalyn with inspiration from Dianne, Alanna, and Stephanie.)

I made this turkey breast in my 6 Quart Ninja Cooker, which gave plenty of room for vegetables to add flavor to the gravy, but you can get away with a smaller slow cooker if that’s what you have. Just use less vegetables if needed.

1 (5 pound) turkey breast with skin and bones (thawed in refrigerator, if frozen)
1 T olive oil
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried sage (rubbed sage)
2-3 large carrots, cut into pieces
2-4 ribs celery, cut into pieces
1 onion, peeled and cut into 4 pieces
2 cups chicken or turkey stock or 2 cups water with 1 T Penzeys Turkey Soup Base
4-6 tsp. arrowroot starch for gravy (or use cornstarch, but arrowroot is slightly lower in carbs and thickens with less starch)

Trim extra skin and fat from turkey breast, leaving the parts of skin that are directly covering the meat. If you have a meat thermometer, pull out the pop-up timer if desired. Rub breast all over and inside with thyme and sage. Heat olive oil in heavy frying pan, then brown turkey breast on both sides and top, about 5 minutes each side.

Put browned turkey breast in crockpot. Add the turkey or chicken stock to the frying pan you browned the turkey in and cook for a couple of minutes, scraping the bottom to get all the browned bits. Pour the liquid over the turkey, then add carrots, onions, and celery to the slow cooker. Cook on high until temperature in the thickest part of the meat reaches 165F; this was 2 hours and 45 minutes for me. (You can also cook on low for a longer time, about 5-6 hours. The temperature still needs to be 165F.)

Remove turkey breast and let rest while you make gravy, covering with foil if desired to keep it warm. Use a fine-mesh skimmer to scoop out vegetables and skim the broth, or strain through a fine strainer into small saucepan. You should have 2-3 cups broth. Bring to a boil and reduce until there is a strong turkey flavor (or add some Penzeys Turkey Soup Base to get more turkey flavor). I kept tasting it as it cooked down for a few minutes, and stopped when it tasted good to me.

Reduce heat so the liquid is barely at a simmer. Mix arrowroot starch with 2-3 T cold water (depending on how much you’re using), then stir gently into the simmering liquid and stop stirring once it’s combined. Don’t over whisk or continue to cook once it’s thickened, or the gravy won’t stay thick. Gravy can also be thickened with cornstarch mixed with water if you don’t have arrowroot, but it will take about 1 T cornstarch per cup of liquid to get the same amount of thickness, and cornstarch is slightly higher in carbs and will take longer to thicken.

Slice the turkey and serve hot with the gravy.

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Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:

Arrowroot starch (also called arrowroot flour) is a great thickener for the South Beach Diet or other low-carb eating plans because it’s slightly lower in carbs and it only takes about half as much arrowroot as it does cornstarch to get the same amount of thickness. It’s also gluten-free. I did learn that arrowroot is often mixed with other types of starch, so check the label if you’re buying it. It will lose it’s thickening properties if stored too long, so buy a small amount at a time. (Even if you thicken this gravy with cornstarch, that will be lower in carbs compared to gravy that’s thickened with flour.)

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
Nutritional Information?
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you. Or if you’re a member of Yummly, you can use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information there.

More Turkey Cooked in the Crockpot

Check out my picks for Top Ten Ideas for Slow Cooker Turkey Breast, plus Honorable Mentions at Slow Cooker from Scratch.

How to Cook a Turkey Breast in the Crockpot and Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy [found on KalynsKitchen.com]
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18 comments on “CrockPot Turkey Breast with Lower-Carb and Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy”

  1. Thank you so much for this recipe, especially the SB friendly gravy!

  2. Hi Kalyn
    I will try this, I’m always looking for new ideas on cooking and this sounds great. I love The South Beach diet food, it’s got loads of mediterranean dishes in it, hardly feels like a diet!

  3. Thanks Kalyn – this looks and sounds really good. GF is right up my alley.
    Will have to try this later this winter as I love Turkey-already have on for Thanksgiving. Have a great Holiday. Eileen

  4. Fantastic — I’ve been wanting to learn to use my slow cooker for more than just stew, and this is much more appealing to me than a roasting a whole turkey, especially when everyone at the table wants breast meat.

  5. Hilly you’re welcome. Arrowroot can be tricky to work with (be careful not to overstir or cook too long) but it’s wonderful for lower-carb gravy.

    Lesley, agree completely!

    Eileen, this is something I can see myself making often. Happy Thanksgiving to you too!

    Lydia, same thing here, no one really wants the dark meat. This turkey turned out so moist and flavorful, loved it!

  6. Terrific! I won’t be doing this one for Thanksgiving, but since we won’t have any leftovers (going to the In-Laws for the big day), it would be an easy, perfect way to get some turkey in after the holiday.

  7. This is great – I’ve been on the hunt for SB-friendly crockpot recipes. Thanks so much!

  8. Kalyn
    Just wanted to tell you I made this turkey in the crockpot this past weekend for the umpteenth time. Always so good!!

  9. Have you ever made this with boneless, skinless turkey breast? I am contemplating trying it but am worried it will be dry. Thoughts?

  10. I have made this with boneless, skinless turkey breast and it was still good. Be sure to use a meat thermometer and don't cook it too long.

  11. I'm making this tomorrow for Thanksgiving. I'll let you know how this works out. Looks yummy!

  12. Loved this idea, but for me the time was way off. Had to add almost an hour on high.

  13. Mecca, slow cookers are known for being highly variable in how hot they cook, so yours must cook a bit cooler than normal. I've made this in two different slow cookers through the years, and it was done in just under 3 hours for me in both of them.

  14. Kalyn, did you know that Penzeys now has a store in Draper? It is beautiful. You might want to hop in your car and drive down there to check it out.

  15. So wonderful, I cann't wait to try it out, I am wondering whether I can use my bread machine to do the same thing as your recipe

  16. Pingback: Have a Healthy Thanksgiving! Easy, Nourishing Recipes | Grace Filled Plate

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