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This Turkey Roulade recipe is a show stopping centerpiece for any occasion — and it’s surprisingly easy to make! The best part? It can be assembled the day before.
If you’re planning a gathering and want a beautiful centerpiece for your table, but don’t want the added stress of cooking a whole bird or risk ruining an expensive roast, try this turkey roulade. This recipe uses turkey breast, making it an inexpensive crowd pleaser. It requires a little bit of prep work, but this can be done the day before your party giving you more time to pop open those bottles of wine on the day of.
A “roulade” is a dish that is rolled around a filling, creating a spiral. This can be savory (like with this recipe) or sweet (Swiss cake rolls, anyone?). To make a Turkey Roulade, you must first take a turkey breast and slice it almost in half horizontally, then open it like a book. Then, cover the turkey with plastic wrap and pound with a mallet or heavy-bottomed pan until the meat is all the same thickness – about ¼”. For this recipe, I opted for two turkey breast tenderloins to make two smaller roulades. If you prefer to use one larger one, the technique is still the same, but you may need to roast it in a lower temperature oven for more time to ensure it is thoroughly cooked.
Making a Turkey Roulade
After your turkey is flattened, it’s time for the filling! You can put whatever you want in a roulade, so let your creativity soar! I opted for some mushrooms, walnuts, and herbs. They offer an earthy, hearty filling to the mild turkey and the herbs make it super fresh. I did a quick blitz of the herbs and walnuts in a food processor, and sauteed the mushrooms in a little butter before combining the two to make a filling. When making a roulade, I recommend keeping the pieces of the filling pretty small and uniform in size. This helps the rolling process and gives you the beautiful spiral shape.
Turkey Roulade is also very forgiving. Even if it doesn’t look the prettiest going into the oven, there are plenty of ways to recover. For example, one of my turkey tenderloins didn’t butterfly very well. Then, I accidentally pounded it a little too thin in one spot. No big deal – once it was rolled, cooked, and sliced, my guests were none the wiser.
Since the Turkey Roulade needs a little time in the oven, you can also roast some potatoes or other vegetables along side it, giving you an easy side dish. I recommend a hearty root vegetable or potato, since they can withstand a long roasting time. Broccoli is also surprisingly durable in the oven as well!
Though making Turkey Roulade is easier than you think, it does require a few tools:
- Kitchen twine: Tying the roulade together helps it keep its shape in the oven so your pretty spiral can shine when you slice it!
- Meat thermometer: Since there is some stuffing involved, it’s tough to tell when the roulade is done. A meat thermometer is correct every time – once the center is 165 degrees, you know it’s cooked perfectly all the way through.
- Mallet: Though you can use a heavy-bottomed pan, a mallet gives you a little more precision. Plus, it’s super fun (and therapeutic!)
- 2 turkey tenderloins
- 4 cremini or baby bella mushrooms stems removed and diced
- ¼ cup walnut halves
- 1 cup parsley loosely packed
- ¼ cup fresh oregano stems removed
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp butter
- Salt and pepper to taste
Make the filling
- In a small pan, melt the butter. Once melted, add the diced mushrooms to the pan, stirring to coat in the butter. Saute for about 5 minutes, until the edges of the mushrooms are slightly browned.
- While the mushrooms are cooking, add the walnuts and herbs to a food processor and pulse 4-5 times, until everything is finely chopped.
- Remove the mushrooms from the heat and combine them in a bowl with the walnuts and herbs. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Prepare the turkey
- Using a sharp knife, slice each turkey breast tenderloin horizontally, without slicing all of the way through.
- Open each tenderloin like a book, then cover them with plastic wrap. With a heavy-bottomed pan or mallet, pound each piece until they are uniformly ¼ inch thick.
- Season both sides with salt and pepper.
Assemble the roulade
- Evenly spread the filling over each prepared turkey breast, leaving about 1” of space at the top.
- Starting at the edge closest to you, tightly roll the turkey breast away from you. Repeat with the other prepared tenderloin.
- Tie each roulade with 2-3 pieces of kitchen twine crosswise to hold it together. Tuck the edges in, then use one piece of twine to tie it lengthwise.
Roast the roulade
- Place the prepared roulades into an oven safe baking dish. Drizzle with the olive oil.
- Roast in an oven preheated to 375 degrees for 30-35 minutes, or the roulades reach an internal temperature of 165 in the thickest part.
- Remove from the oven, and allow them to rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing.