A juicy and succulent turkey roulade is a delicious departure in presentation when it comes to a festive roasted turkey recipe. My turkey roulade is filled with a delicious stuffing prepared with cranberries, hazelnuts, and sage, and features a kiss of sweet flavor and a glossy finish from the spiced-cider glaze.
Turkey Roulade, A Sweet and Glossy Twist on Turkey
Since turkey is such a star of the Thanksgiving table, finding new and interesting ways of preparing and serving it is always a fun thing to do!
If I’m the one preparing the turkey day meal, I’ll often times prepare a roasted turkey breast or two and brush them with a sweet glaze, then simply slice them and serve on a platter with a little sprig of rosemary or thyme.
But when I’m looking to impress just a little bit, or we’re craving something slightly unconventional with both some sweet and some savory notes, I like to prepare this turkey roulade with a cranberry hazelnut stuffing and a deliciously glossy spiced cider glaze brushed over top!
This recipe makes use of juicy turkey breasts just the same, only a turkey breast roulade offers a bit of a departure when it comes to presentation, as it’s filled with a sweet and savory stuffing made from finely cubed bread, cranberries, sage and hazelnuts before being rolled and roasted off to juicy perfection.
So if you’re looking for a preparation for turkey that is brimming with lots of holiday flavor and has a bit of a twist to it, this turkey roulade recipe is a terrifically festive option!
How to Make Turkey Roulade with a Scrumptious Stuffing
A turkey roulade is prepared using de-boned turkey, typically turkey breast, pounded slightly to create a thinner piece of meat that can be filled and easily rolled up.
If I can have my butcher de-bone a couple of turkey breasts for me, then that saves me some time and effort; but often I just do this myself, by carefully running a sharp fillet knife along the ribs/bones removing the meat from those, as part of my prep.
For my filling, I love to stay seasonal and festive using a stuffing with dried cranberries, hazelnuts and sage, which offer a bit of texture and toasted nutty flavor!
Here’s a glance at my recipe for turkey roulade with cranberry hazelnut stuffing: or just jump to the full recipe below…)
- To begin, I prepare my spiced cider glaze and allow it to cool.
- Next, I mix together my simple stuffing with my sweet and savory ingredients, and set that aside.
- To prepare the turkey roulades, I carefully remove the skin from the de-boned turkey breasts, keeping the skin as intact as possible, because I use this to wrap the roulades in before roasting them off.
- After I’ve removed the skin, I butterfly the turkey breasts by cutting most of the way through the thickest part of it, but not all the way through (so it resembles an open book), and then pound the turkey breast between a couple of pieces of plastic wrap to thin it out a bit in preparation for filling and rolling.
- I add equal amounts of the filling to each turkey breast, carefully roll the breasts upward into a roulade, then wrap each roulade in its reserved skin; I tie with some kitchen twine to secure the roulade, brush with spiced cider glaze, and roast!
Turkey Roulade with Cranberry Hazelnut Stuffing
by Ingrid Beer
Yield: Serves 8
Nutrition Info: 745 calories
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour
Total time: 1 hour, 45 minutes
Turkey Roulade Ingredients:
- 6 ounces french-style rolls
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- Black pepper
- 1/2 cup chicken stock/broth
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 2 turkey breast halves (about 2 – 2 1/4 lbs. each), skin-on but bones/ribs removed
- Kitchen twine, to secure roulades
Spiced-Cider Glaze Ingredients:
- 3/4 cup apple cider
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- Pinch salt
- Prepare your spiced cider glaze: add all the glaze ingredients to a saucepan, and whisk to combine.
- Set the heat on medium-high, and once the mixture comes to the boil, reduce the heat to medium-low or low, and allow the liquid to gently simmer for about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until reduced by almost half and just slightly thickened (the glaze will thicken more as it cools).
- Strain the glaze into a clean container, and allow it to completely cool before glazing the roulades.
- To prepare the stuffing, tear the rolls into small pieces into a bowl, and then add to the bread the cranberries, hazelnuts, sage, Italian seasoning, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper; toss this mixture to combine these ingredients.
- Next, add to the chicken stock/broth and the melted butter, and toss everything very well with your hands to combine the ingredients and moisten the torn rolls well; set aside for a moment.
- To prepare the roulades, preheat the oven to 375°, and place a wire rack over a foil-lined baking sheet.
- Place one of the de-boned turkey breasts on a cutting board in front of you, and very carefully separate the skin from the meat by placing your fingers underneath and pulling it off so as not to poke any holes if possible, reserving the skin to wrap the roulades in it before roasting.
- With the skin removed, butterfly the turkey breast by cutting through the thickest part of the breast, being careful not to cut all the way through—you just want to open up the the breast, kind of like a book, and have a larger, thinner piece; set that aside, and repeat the process with the other turkey breast.
- Place one butterflied turkey breast between two pieces of plastic wrap, and using a meat mallet, gently pound the breast out to make it a bit thinner and more even; repeat the process with the other breast; set them aside.
- Place one of the butterflied turkey breasts horizontally in front of you; sprinkle on a pinch or two of salt and pepper, and then add half of the stuffing onto the breast meat leaving a little border; begin rolling the breast upwards, carefully, until rolled (if you happen to have any little holes or rips in the meat, don’t worry—just tuck them in as much as possible, as you’ll be able to hide those once the skin is added); lay the roulade on it’s seam.
- Next, carefully cover the roulade in its reserved skin by gently stretching and smoothing the skin over it to wrap the roulade as much as possible; then, cut 4 pieces of kitchen twine, and tie them around the roulade to secure it and help it to hold together while it roasts; repeat with the other breast.
- Place the two roulades onto the wire rack-lined baking sheet.
- Pour about 1/3 of the spiced cider glaze into a small dish or ramekin (reserve the remaining portion to use on the cooked roulade and to serve at the table), and brush a bit of the glaze over each roulade, getting under the kitchen twine, and sprinkle over another pinch of black pepper.
- Place an oven-safe digital thermometer into the center of one of the roulades, and place them into the oven to roast for about 45 minutes – 1 hour, or until the thermometer reaches 160°. (If you see that the skin is beginning to get too dark while roasting, just cover the roulades with some foil.)
- Once roasted, allow the roulades to rest lightly covered with foil for about 10-15 minutes; then, cut off the kitchen twine, glaze the roulades again (this time with the reserved glaze), and slice them into medallions to serve.
Tips & Tidbits for my Turkey Roulade with Cranberry Hazelnut Stuffing:
- Ask the butcher to de-bone the meat, or do it yourself: If your butcher can de-bone the turkey breasts, this will save you some time and effort; but if this isn’t an option, then using a sharp fillet knife to cut the meat away from the bones will work—just work slowly and carefully!
- Reserve the skin from each turkey breast: Once you’ve de-boned the breast meat, carefully slide your fingers between the skin and the meat, and remove it, taking care not to poke a hole in it, if possible. Set it aside, and use it to wrap the filled and rolled roulades before roasting.
- Tasty ingredients for the filling: Dried cranberries, sage and hazelnuts are a festive option for the stuffing; but you could sub dried cherries, raisins, currents or even apricots for the cranberries, and use thyme in place of sage. Pecans, walnuts or almonds are great swaps for hazelnuts!
- Prepare ahead for easy turkey roulade: The spiced cider glaze as well as the roulades can be prepped a couple of days ahead of when you plan on serving. Allow the glaze to cool and then keep it in a covered container in the fridge, and fill/roll the roulades, wrapping them in the skin and securing them with kitchen twine before placing onto a platter and wrapping tightly in plastic wrap. Allow to come to room temp for an hour before roasting.
Cook’s Note: This recipe was originally published in 2013, and has been updated with even more love!