My Oven Baked Turkey Tenderloin is a great recipe for using this lean cut of meat. First set the turkey aside to marinate in a blend of soy sauce, orange and lemon juice and zest, and spices, before baking in the oven until soft and tender.
Full Recipe Ingredients/Instructions are available in the
recipe card at the bottom of the post.
You can find important tips/tricks in the
Turkey tenderloin is a really lean meat, and has a reputation for being dry and tasteless, but that is not the case with my simple turkey tenderloin recipe.
I marinate the tenderloin for anything from 30 minutes to 4 hours, the longer the better, before searing and baking it quickly in the oven. This results in the most tender, juicy and flavorful turkey tenderloin that everyone will enjoy.
This versatile cut of meat really takes on flavor and is a great, often cheaper, alternative to chicken breast.
I like using turkey tenderloin as this cut cooks quickly and is a lot more simple than cooking a whole turkey. This makes it the ideal cut for family dinner any night of the week.
Are turkey tenderloins the same as turkey breast?
No, the turkey tenderloin is the boneless part of the turkey breast. It is the skinless piece that sits between the turkey breast and the breast bone. It is a smaller cut than using the entire breast.
Here is what you will need for this recipe:
- Turkey breast tenderloins – These usually come two in a pack and are usually 1/2 a pound or a 3/4 of a pound each.
- Marinade – Olive oil, soy sauce, fresh orange and lemon juice (and the zest of the fruit), garlic, thyme, ground ginger, salt, and sage. The marinade flavors the tenderloin and helps keep it tender.
How to make oven baked turkey tenderloin
Pat the turkey tenderloins dry with a paper towel and place in a bowl or plastic bag.
Combine the marinade ingredients together. Pour the marinade over the turkey tenderloins. Marinate for 30 minutes or up to 4 hours.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
While the oven is preheating, heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Remove the tenderloins from marinade and sear in the preheated skillet, about 2 minutes per side.
Remove the skillet from the stove and place it in the preheated oven. Bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes, until the internal temperature of the tenderloin reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
These tips will help you make the best turkey tenderloin you’ve ever tasted.
- You can marinate the turkey from anything from 30 minutes to 4 hours. However, I do recommend a longer marinate as it will improve the flavor.
- Take time to properly sear the turkey tenderloin before baking in the oven as it will intensify the flavor of the finished dish.
- A probe thermometer is the easiest method of checking the internal cooking temperature of turkey, or any other meat, to ensure it is done.
- Once the turkey tenderloins have baked, remove from the oven and set aside to rest for 5-10 minutes, before slicing and serving. This will allow the juices to be absorbed back into the turkey.
This marinade is a great blend of citrus, with fresh herbs and spices that add great flavor to the lean turkey tenderloin. However, here are some other suggestions if you want to mix things up.
- Spices: I’ve used ground ginger, but you could add a variety of spices. For example: cumin; coriander; allspice; or even some poultry seasoning.
- Herbs: I’ve added fresh garlic along with dried thyme and sage, but you could parsley, tarragon or rosemary.
- Acid: You can swap the citrus juices for a splash of apple cider vinegar.
- Chili: Kick up the heat with some fresh chili, chili flakes or chili powder.
How to serve my oven bake turkey tenderloin
Turkey is a very versatile meat and works with many different sides. I always like to serve potato, one or two veggie sides and some Homemade Gravy.
When it comes to great tasting sides you can’t beat my Creamy Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes, Scalloped Potatoes with Blue Cheese or my Garlic Mashed Potatoes. For a great alternative to regular potatoes try my Mashed Sweet Potatoes or my Southern Candied Sweet Potatoes.
For vegetable sides I like to add some green peas, or some simple steamed broccoli. Try my Fried Cabbage, Instant Pot Buttered Cabbage, Southern Green Beans, Smothered Green Beans, Carrot Soufflé or Marinated Air Fryer Vegetables.
How to store cooked turkey breast
To refrigerate: Keep any leftover turkey in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. Leftovers make a great addition to salads, soups, pasta dishes and sandwiches the next day.
To freeze: Once cooked and cooled, place the turkey into an airtight container and store in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator when you are ready to enjoy.
Placed in a preheated oven at 325 degrees Fahrenheit, I bake the turkey tenderloins for 25-30 minutes.
Cook turkey until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Always check the thickest part of the tenderloin.
Yes, this is a low fat, lean cut of meat.
As the name suggests, the tenderloin is the most lean, tender part of a turkey.
If you have tried this Oven Baked Turkey Tenderloin recipe, or any other recipe on my blog, then please rate it and let me know how it turned out in the comments below!
Oven Baked Turkey Tenderloin
- 1.5 lbs turkey breast tenderloins 2 breasts roughly 3/4 pounds each
- 3/4 cup olive oil + 1 tbsp for searing
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp orange juice and zest
- 2 tbsp lemon juice and zest
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp rubbed sage
- Pat turkey tenderloins dry with a paper towel and place in a bowl or plastic bag.
- Combine marinade ingredients. Pour the marinade over the turkey tenderloins. Marinate for 30 minutes or up to 4 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. While the oven is preheating, heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Remove the tenderloins from the marinade and sear in the preheated skillet, about 2 minutes per side.
- Remove the skillet from the stove and place it in the preheated oven. Bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes, until the internal temperature of the tenderloin reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.