Baked Turkey Cutlets With Crispy Panko and Parmesan Coating

Baked turkey cutlets

The Spruce 

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
593 Calories
20g Fat
52g Carbs
48g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 593
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 20g 26%
Saturated Fat 6g 30%
Cholesterol 316mg 105%
Sodium 2031mg 88%
Total Carbohydrate 52g 19%
Dietary Fiber 4g 15%
Protein 48g
Calcium 298mg 23%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Breaded cutlets are often associated with chicken or veal. This American take on the famous Italian breaded cutlets called scallopini uses turkey and it’s just as delicious.

The cutlets should be thinly cut, no thicker than one quarter of an inch. If you cannot buy them in the desired thickness, you can pound them yourself and you can do that without owning a meat mallet. Place the meat on a cutting board between two sheets of parchment paper or wax paper and evenly pound them with a meat mallet or flatten them with a rolling pin. The paper protects the meat from being torn and blemished.

Using turkey instead of chicken or veal is not the only way this recipe is different from the traditional breaded cutlets. This recipe uses the Japanese breadcrumbs panko, which are lighter, crispier, and airier than your standard breadcrumbs. The combination of panko crumbs and Parmesan cheese provides a crispy, delicious coating for these turkey cutlets.

After dusting the cutlets in flour, they are dipped in a generous amount of beaten eggs. The recipe calls for two large eggs and two egg whites, which might seem like a lot at first but to make the panko stick well, the cutlets must be thoroughly coated all over.

What is also different in this recipe from your usual breaded cutlets is that they are baked in the oven. It means less fat than pan-frying, more even baking plus less hands-on time for turning them, which comes in handy when on a weeknight when your attention is required for other things, but you still need to get dinner on the table for your family.

The cutlets only take 10 to 15 minutes to cook through in the preheated oven, or a bit longer if they are thicker. This is where using thin cutlets of even thickness pays off, if you start off with these, they will bake evenly. Once the time is up, the most reliable way to check for doneness is measuring the core temperature with an instant-read food thermometer. If it shows at least 165 °F, the cutlets are done.

Serve these flavorful cutlets with a tomato chutney or your favorite dip. For a full entrée, serve it with rice or potato dish and salad. Leftovers of the cutlets also make a tasty addition to a tossed salad or Caesar salad, or as a sandwich filler.

Ingredients

  • Salt (to taste)
  • Black pepper (to taste)
  • 1 to 1 1/4 pounds turkey cutlets (or thin cut turkey scallopini)
  • 1 1/2 cups panko crumbs
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for baked turkey cutlets
    The Spruce 
  2. Heat the oven to 450 F.

  3. Line a large baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick spray (jelly roll pan, baking pan, or roasting pan). 

    Line a large baking sheet with foil
    The Spruce  
  4. Sprinkle the turkey cutlets all over with the salt and pepper.

    Turkey on paper
    The Spruce  
  5. Set up three breading trays or shallow bowls. Put flour in a breading tray or bowl. In another breading tray or bowl, combine the crumbs and Parmesan cheese.

    Spread out panko
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  6. Beat the eggs, egg whites, water, and Dijon together and pour into another tray or bowl.

    Beat eggs
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  7. One at a time, dip cutlets in the flour, then dip in the egg mixture, then dredge in the crumb mixture until thoroughly coated.

    Dip cutlets
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  8. Arrange the cutlets on the prepared baking pan. Spray the cutlets lightly with olive oil or canola oil spray or drizzle with melted butter.

    Arrange the cutlets
    The Spruce  
  9. Bake cutlets for 10 to 15 minutes, or longer if your turkey cutlets are thick. To be sure, use an instant-read food thermometer. The temperature should be at least 165 F on a food thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a cutlet.