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Last year I made a slow cooker turkey breast on repeat, but this fall I wanted something a little quicker, so since I’ve been making a lot of air fryer recipes lately, I decided to try turkey breast in the air fryer. And it’s awesome! This air fryer turkey breast recipe is tender and juicy, and the skin is golden and crispy. It’s easy to make and you’ll use just 5 simple ingredients!
Cooking a turkey breast in an air fryer sure is a great option for a smaller piece of turkey, but if you’re cooking a whole turkey for a bigger crowd, try herb butter roasted turkey instead.
Can You Cook A Turkey Breast In An Air Fryer?
Yes, and cooking a turkey breast in the air fryer is a great way to make it. It cooks evenly, quickly, and you’ll get the brownest, crispiest skin!
Why You’ll Love This Air Fryer Turkey Breast Recipe
- Savory turkey flavor infused with garlic and fresh herbs
- Tender, juicy turkey breast with crispy skin
- Takes just 10 minutes to prep
- Cooks in an hour
- Saves precious oven space
- Perfect for smaller Thanksgiving dinner
Ingredients For Seasoning Turkey Breast
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for air fryer bone-in turkey breast, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Turkey breast – The best air fryer turkey breast is made with bone-in whole turkey breast, which will be the most flavorful. But, boneless turkey breast (which usually has a net around it) will also work, sometimes with a different cook time. This recipe assumes a larger turkey breast that’s about 5 pounds; most are 3-5 pounds, so cook time will be slightly shorter if yours is smaller.
- Olive oil – Or avocado oil.
- Sea Salt & Black Pepper
- Fresh Herbs – I used fresh rosemary and thyme. Chopped sage leaves would also be delicious! If all you have is dried herbs, you can use those, but use 1 teaspoon of the dried seasonings for each tablespoon of fresh.
- Garlic – We’re using whole cloves, so use fresh garlic. I don’t recommend substituting garlic powder or jarred garlic here.
Seasoning Variations: Try adding a couple teaspoons of poultry seasoning, or use Italian seasoning instead of the fresh herbs.
How To Cook A Turkey Breast In An Air Fryer
This section shows how to make air fryer turkey breast with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Season. Pat the skin dry with paper towels. Rub turkey breast with olive oil, then sprinkle with sea salt, black pepper, rosemary, and thyme. Place garlic cloves under the skin and on top.
TIP: Preheat the air fryer. Just a few minutes is fine, it doesn’t take as long as the oven, but it does help crisp the turkey skin.
- Air fry. Place the turkey breast skin side down into the air fryer. Cook until halfway done, then flip and cook until the skin is golden and crispy, and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F with a instant read thermometer. (Recommended cook times are below.)
- Rest. Remove the turkey breast from air fryer basket and let rest for at least 10-20 minutes before carving.
- Slice. After resting, slice the turkey breast lengthwise. I serve mine with low carb gravy!
How Long To Cook Turkey Breast In The Air Fryer?
As a rule of thumb, turkey breast in the air fryer will take about 12 minutes per pound. For a 5-pound turkey breast, that is approximately an hour.
Even though it’s not what you would expect, boneless turkey breast might take a bit longer than the bone-in turkey breast.
Use the timing guide as a rule of thumb, but the best way to check is by using a probe thermometer, as cooking time will vary depending on the weight and shape of the meat.
Can You Cook Frozen Turkey Breast In The Air Fryer?
Cooking frozen turkey can result in undercooked and overcooked spots, so it’s not recommended. If you are air frying a turkey breast that is frozen, thaw it first in water on the counter, or in the fridge overnight.
- Store: Store leftover turkey breast in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- Reheat: Reheat turkey in the air fryer or the oven at 350 degrees F, just until heated through. To make it more juicy, heat in the oven with some broth, covered in foil.
- Freeze: You can freeze cooked turkey meat for 2-3 months. (Take the meat off the bone before freezing.)
What To Serve With Air Fryer Turkey Breast
While mashed potatoes and stuffing may be traditional sides, I prefer to serve this air fry bone-in turkey breast with one of these healthy side dishes:
- Green Beans Almondine
- Roasted Asparagus
- Zucchini Casserole
- Sauteed Broccoli
- Mashed Cauliflower
- Kale Crunch Salad
More Easy Air Fryer Recipes
If you love this air fryer turkey breast recipe, you might also love some of my other easy air fryer recipes:
Tools For Cooking Turkey Breast In An Air Fryer
- Air Fryer – You can’t make turkey breast in the air fryer without the air fryer. I love this one because it’s large and heats evenly.
- Meat Thermometer – Checking the internal temperature is the best way to tell when your bone-in turkey breast is perfectly cooked.
- Probe Thermometer – My go-to thermometer, because it’s hands-off. Simply stick the probe into the thickest part of the turkey after flipping, then it will beep once it’s ready!
Air Fryer Turkey Breast Recipe
Air Fryer Turkey Breast Recipe
The BEST turkey breast in the air fryer! This air fryer turkey breast recipe (bone-in or boneless) has juicy, tender meat and crispy, golden skin.
Tap underlined ingredients to see where to get them. Please turn Safari reader mode OFF to view ingredients.
Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Preheat the air fryer for 5 minutes at 350 degrees F (177 degrees C).
Use paper towels to pat the turkey dry. Rub the olive oil all over the turkey breast. Sprinkle with sea salt, black pepper, rosemary, and thyme.
Place the garlic pieces under the turkey skin and on top of the turkey.
Place the turkey breast in the air fryer and cook for about 25 minutes.
Flip the turkey over and cook for 25-30 minutes more, until skin is golden brown and crispy and internal temperature is 165 degrees F (74 degrees C) using a probe thermometer.
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Serving size: ~6-8 oz cooked turkey, or 1/4 of entire recipe
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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I cannot wait to try this recipe!!!!!
If using a boneless breast, will that alter the cooking time?
Wholesome Yum D0
Hi Abby, Yes, you would cook for less time if it is boneless.
For bone in breast do you use air fry or roast setting? Emeril Legasse fryer
Wholesome Yum D0
Hi Karl, I use the air fryer setting.
Fantastic! I buy only bone in breast usually five or 6 lol because EVERYONE loves the breast and when we have leftovers, it’s only dark meat. I actually tried this exact recipe last year and NOTHING I’ve ever cooked in my air fryer smells this heavenly! Thanks for making everyone’s Thanksgiving taste AH-MAZING! We are grateful for you!
Hi, I’m a newbie to air fryers and a couple things are unclear to me. Do you preheat the air fryer to 350 on the “air fryer” or “roast” setting? Next question, does the bird go directly on the bottom of the fryer or on the basket-y thing? I can’t wait to try this, it looks so yummy!
Wholesome Yum D0
Hi Heidi, I am not sure what kind of air fryer you have but most require you to set the temperature and preheat before you place the food inside. If you have a basket and the turkey fits in it, I suggest using that so the turkey does not stick to the bottom.
This is a great turkey option especially for Thanksgiving because it frees up the oven for everything else. So juicy and delicious, thank you!
This is the first time I made a turkey breast in the Air Fryer. It turned out perfect! Thanks for the tips and recipe.
Love that you can make this in the air fryer!
This recipe is so easy and stress-free. I like the flavor combination and it’s so much faster than baking the whole bird!
This is on my Thanksgiving menu for this year!
So easy and delicious – really loved all the garlic and that it calls for fresh herbs.
I love how quick this is! And the turkey turns out great and juicy every time!
Perfect for when you don’t want to deal with a whole turkey and still want to enjoy the amazing flavours that the air fryer creates.
So crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. So much flavor too. The airfryer just locks in the flavor.
I had no idea that you could make turkey breast in the air fryer!! I know that this will be a staple over the holidays, thank you so much for the recipe 🙂
I love all the ways I can use my air fryer. This will make cooking less turkey this Thanksgiving a breeze. Thanks for sharing!
This is my new favorite way to cook a turkey breast. So juicy and we loved the crispy skin!
This recipe is genius. I love the brown and crispy skin. Do you think this would also work for turkey thighs?
Wholesome Yum D0
Hi Patti, Yes, turkey thighs would work great!
The only way I will make turkey breast from now on! So moist and delicious!
It never occured to me to cook turkey breast in my air fryer but the result is absolutely amazing! Another use for my beloved air fryer! Thank you!
It looks delicious. I’ll try it next Sunday. Thanks for sharing.
The air fryer makes the best turkey!! I won’t make it any other way! The seasonings are perfect!
Yum!! I am excited to make our turkey in the air fryer this year. It’s the easiest & turns out so good!
I love how crispy it is!! So good and really flavorful!
This turkey was so juicy and perfect, thank you! We all loved it.
Cooked to perfection. I will only make it this way from now on!