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Pesto turkey crown recipe

Pesto turkey crown recipe

9 ratings

Give your turkey an Italian twist this Christmas with this recipe for turkey crown with pesto and pancetta. See method

  • Serves 6
  • 10mins to prepare, 2hrs 10mins to cook and 15mins to cool
  • 810 calories / serving
  • Gluten-free


  • 2 1/2-3kg (5-6lb) turkey crown
  • 100g softened butter
  • 3-4 tbsp pesto
  • 1 lemon
  • 110g (3 3/4oz) pancetta

Each serving contains

  • Energy

  • Fat

    32g 46%
  • Saturates

    12g 60%
  • Sugars

    0g 0%
  • Salt

    1.7g 28%

of the reference intake
Carbohydrate 0.1g Protein 128.9g Fibre 0.1g


  1. Heat the oven to gas 5, 190°C, fan 170°C. Weigh the 2 1⁄2-3kg (5-6lb) turkey crown. Cooking time will be 20 minutes per kg, plus 70 minutes. Beat together 100g (31⁄2oz) softened butter, 3-4 tbsp pesto and the zest and juice of half a lemon until well mixed.
  2. Place the turkey crown in a roasting tin. Carefully lift the skin from one side of the neck cavity and make pockets, with your hands, between the breast skin and meat. Smear your butter mixture beneath the skin and all over the breasts. Smear leftovers onto the skin, then layer over 110g (3oz) pancetta. Squeeze over the rest of the lemon juice, scatter on the zest and season.
  3. Cover with foil and roast in the oven. Remove the foil for the last 40 minutes. Test the meat by piercing the thickest part with a sharp knife: if the juices run clear, it’s ready; if still pink, return to the oven for 10 minutes or until the juices run clear. Remove from the oven when cooked, cover with foil and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before carving and serving.

See more Turkey recipes

For top tips on protecting you and your family when preparing raw meat and poultry, visit Food Safety in the Home.

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