Skinless turkey breast is naturally low in fat for an animal source of protein. Cutlets, made from pounded turkey breast, cook quite quickly and make for a fun food, with their crunchy, breaded exteriors and the underlying juicy poultry. Limit your meal's fat and calories by baking turkey cutlets rather than frying them in a considerable amount of oil. Don't fret -- an "oven-fried" preparation can turn out just as tasty as a pan-fried dish. There are a number of ways to tailor the coating to your taste, too, so your cutlets never need to be boring.
Position an oven rack to bake the turkey cutlets in the top third of the oven. Preheat to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. High heat is the best way to crisp your breading quickly in the oven without drying out the turkey meat. Lay a sheet of aluminum foil over a baking tray and grease it with fat-free cooking spray.
Blot the turkey cutlets thoroughly dry with paper towels. Season them liberally with salt and pepper. Add other desired herbs and spices, such as sage, tarragon, thyme, rosemary, garlic or onion powder, or curry or chili powder for heat.
Pour all-purpose flour into a wide, shallow bowl. Use enough to coat both sides of all the turkey breast cutlets. Whole wheat flour is a healthier alternative you can use.
Beat enough eggs to coat the cutlets in a second wide, shallow bowl. Stir in a little milk, hot sauce, soy sauce, or mustard, if you like. Alternatively, you can brush the turkey breasts with Dijon mustard as an adhesive to hold the breadcrumb coating. This eliminates the fat and cholesterol and most of the calories the eggs add.
Fill a third wide, shallow bowl with breadcrumbs. Panko breadcrumbs offer considerable crunch and they brown well. Mix in other ingredients, if you like, for more depth of flavor to your cutlet coating. For example, add grated Parmesan cheese, finely chopped nuts, or herbs and spices.
Dredge the turkey cutlets in the flour one at a time. Then, dip them in the egg and let the excess run back off into the bowl, or brush them with Dijon mustard. Then, dredge the tenderized breasts in the breadcrumbs, using the hand that doesn't have egg on it to prevent breading your fingers. Shake off the excess breading and lay each cutlet on the lined baking tray as you finish coating it.
Bake these low-fat turkey cutlets in the top third of the oven for 10 minutes. Turn them over and bake them for about another 10 minutes, until the breading is golden brown. Turkey should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees, but there's no way to get a reliable reading on such thin pieces; cut into the center of a cutlet and consider it done if the juices run completely clear.
Things You'll Need
Salt and pepper
Herbs and spices
3 shallow bowls
Eggs or Dijon mustard
Breadcrumbs and other breading ingredients
It's not difficult to make cutlets out of turkey breast. Seal a breast in a sturdy plastic bag or place it on a cutting board with a large sheet of sturdy plastic cling wrap over it. Tenderize the turkey with the flat side of a meat mallet, a rolling pin, the bottom of a skillet or even your hand. Start in the middle of the breast and pound down and slightly outward from the center. Pound the breast until it's thin and of uniform thickness.
Store turkey in the refrigerator to keep it below 40 degrees. Don't leave it out at room temperature for any more than two hours. Use or freeze it within two days of purchase. Airtight packaging helps prevent freezer burn.