Substitute Alvaro Morata scored the only goal of the game in the 70th minute as Juve did just enough and no more ahead of their Champions League trip to Borussia Dortmund.
Palermo did too little to test them and could have no complaints as they wasted an opportunity to move up to seventh at the Renzo Barbera.
Zdenek Zeman was denied a winning return to the Cagliari bench as Empoli equalised deep in stoppage time to snatch a 1-1 draw.
It was not the heavy wind and strong rain which arrived midway through the second half that dampened the spirits of the Czech coach’s return, but former Cagliari midfielder Matias Vecino with his last-gasp leveller.
The Sardinians showed glimpses of the gung-ho football with which Zeman has forged his reputation down the years and it seemed like Joao Pedro’s 20th-minute strike was going to be worth all three points.