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S.W. Florida Daily News


What is the Recommended Amount of Turkey Breast per Person?

How Many Pounds of Turkey Breast You Actually Need Per Person

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and you’re excited to host a memorable feast for your loved ones. As you plan your menu, one question inevitably comes to mind: How much turkey breast do I need to buy to ensure everyone leaves the table satisfied? If you’ve ever found yourself pondering this very question, you’re in the right place. In this article, we will discuss the perfect amount of turkey breast you should purchase per person to make your Thanksgiving dinner a resounding success!

The Basics of Calculating Turkey Breast Per Person

When it comes to sizing your turkey breast, a general rule of thumb is to allocate approximately 1 pound per person. This estimation accounts for moderate appetites and allows for some leftovers to enjoy later. However, keep in mind that this is just a starting point. Various factors can influence the amount of turkey breast you need, such as appetite variations, additional side dishes, and personal preferences.

Taking Appetite Variation into Consideration

While 1 pound of turkey breast per person is a good reference point, it’s important to consider appetite variations. Some guests may have larger appetites while others might eat less. If you are aware that certain individuals in your gathering have notoriously hearty appetites, it may be wise to adjust your calculation and allocate a bit more turkey breast to ensure everyone has their fill.

Including Side Dishes in Your Calculation

Thanksgiving often brings a wide array of side dishes to the table, from mashed potatoes to roasted vegetables and cranberry sauce. These accompaniments can fill up your guests faster, resulting in smaller portions of turkey breast being consumed. If you plan to serve an extensive range of side dishes, you can consider reducing the amount of turkey breast per person to ensure an appropriate balance between the main course and sides.

Other Factors to Consider

Taking Personal Preferences into Account

Every family has their unique traditions and preferences when it comes to Thanksgiving dinner. Some households may prefer more poultry-centric meals, while others may focus on side dishes and desserts. Gauge the preferences of your guests before making your final turkey breast calculation to make sure you account for any specific preferences within your gathering.

Accounting for Leftovers

Leftovers are often part of the charm of a Thanksgiving feast. If you love the idea of enjoying turkey sandwiches and reheated plates of leftovers in the days following the main event, consider purchasing slightly more turkey breast. By offering an abundance of leftovers, you can ensure everyone leaves satisfied and still have plenty of turkey for the days ahead.


As you plan your Thanksgiving feast, knowing how many pounds of turkey breast you need per person is crucial for a successful and satisfying dinner. While the general rule of thumb is 1 pound of turkey breast per individual, don’t forget to factor in appetite variations, side dishes, personal preferences, and the desire for leftovers. By considering these factors, you can confidently estimate the right amount of turkey breast to purchase, creating a memorable feast that will leave your guests wanting more!


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