Halal Certified Boneless Duck Breast

Adding Pan Seared Duck To Your Recipe Collection

POSTED: 05/12/2022

For a fast and easy weekday meal or an effortless entrée for entertaining, look no further than pan seared duck breast when adding to your recipe collection. With a few simple ingredients and a quick stovetop method, you can create a simple meal with an upscale feel in just minutes.

Do not be intimated by the idea of preparing duck at home if you have never done it before. Because duck is often offered on fine dining menus, you may wonder whether you can achieve a crispy, golden-brown skin and a pink, juicy center when preparing duck breast at home. But honestly, it is simple to master a restaurant-quality duck meal by following Maple Leaf Farms cooking tips.

Prepping the Duck Breast

Duck breast has a layer of fat under the skin, so it is critical that you score the duck breast before cooking it. As you can see in our instructional video, this is done by carefully cutting a diamond pattern at 1/4-inch intervals into the skin and fat — not the meat.

According to Chef Steve Oakley, the trick to scoring duck breast is to use a sharp knife to make about 20 diagonal cuts across an average-sized duck breast. This will allow up to 70% of the fat to render out, yielding a wonderfully crispy skin.

Be sure to season the duck breast with salt and freshly ground pepper (or your favorite seasonings) on both sides before you start rendering the fat.

Cooking the Duck Breast

We recommend starting with a cool skillet for pan seared duck breast. Place the breast skin side down in the pan. Then turn the heat on to medium-low so the fat slowly renders out. Sauté for 10 minutes skin side down before turning it over and cooking it for another 2 minutes on the meat side.

Keep the rendered duck fat and don’t throw it out! This healthier fat has a high smoke point, which makes it great for a wide variety of cooking applications.

Once you render the fat, you can choose from one of these three options to finish the breast:

  • Sauté – Continue to slowly cook it in a skillet on medium-low for another 10 minutes.
  • Oven – Transfer to metal baking sheet, skin side up. Place in 350°F preheated oven and bake for approximately 5-6 minutes.
  • Grill – Place skin side up on pre-heated grill and cook for 5-6 minutes. Flip over and cook another 2-3 minutes.

No matter what method you choose to finish the duck breast, the internal temperature should reach approximately 140°F before transferring it to a cutting board or plate to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. This will allow the internal temperature to rise to 165°F as it rests and ensures the juices do not run out when it is sliced.

The final product will appear medium to medium-rare when the duck breast reaches a food-safe internal temperature – similar to steak. Although duck is a type of poultry, it is considered red meat from a culinary perspective.

Chef's Duck Breast Cooking Method

Utilizing the Leftover Duck Fat

Duck fat is considered liquid gold in culinary circles because of the delicious flavor it lends to a variety of foods. Be sure to transfer any leftover fat to a clean, airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for later use.

Duck fat is higher in monosaturated fats, making it more like olive oil than other animal fats. It is great for frying French fries, potatoes, vegetables and more.

Pairing it with a Sauce or Side Dish

Duck breast is often served with a fruit sauce or reduction at many restaurants. That’s because duck pairs well with many fruits — not just orange— including blueberries, pomegranate, pear and others. Maple Leaf Farms offers several sauce recipes for duck breast like this lime sauce. You can always adapt one of these recipes to create your own with your favorite fruit.

Savory pan seared duck breast easily compliments your favorite side dishes. From roasted vegetables or potatoes to spinach salad or rice, duck breast is versatile enough to be served with a variety of side dishes. Chimichurri Duck & Frites is one of our favorites.

Whether you are planning a special celebration at home or a casual friendly gathering, pan seared duck breast is sure to satisfy your guests. For more recipe and menu inspiration, be sure to check out Maple Leaf Farms cooking tips and recipe catalog. And don’t forget you have that rendered duck fat!