Herbed Turkey Burger

Ground turkey is typically much leaner than ground beef. In order to keep the burger from being too dry it helps to use ground dark meat from thighs and legs if you can get it. Adding a little olive oil to the mix helps, too.

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 8 turkey burgers

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium red onion, minced
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 pounds ground turkey meat, preferably from the legs and thighs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh sage
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

To serve:

  • Burger buns
  • Toppings like sliced onions, lettuce, sliced tomatoes, bacon, mayonnaise, mustard, relish, and/or ketchup

Method

1 Sauté onions and garlic: Sauté the chopped onion in olive oil for 3 minutes over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes, or until the garlic begins to brown. Remove from heat. Transfer the onions, garlic, and oil to a large bowl to cool down.

2 Make the burger mix: Once the onions are cool to the touch, add the ground turkey, salt, pepper, and herbs into the bowl. Using your hands, gently mix everything until well combined. You want the herbs mixed in without overworking the meat (which would make the burgers tough).

3 Form the meat into patties. Use your fingers to form a slight indentation in the middle of the patties. When burgers cook, the meat contracts from the edges. If the middle part is slightly thinner than the edges it will help the patties finish with a more even shape and less of a bulge in the middle.

4 Cook the burgers: Cook on a hot grill or in a hot cast iron frying pan for 5 to 6 minutes per side, until cooked through (165°F if using a meat thermometer).

If using a grill, first pre-heat the grill on high for 10 minutes and coat the grates with a little vegetable oil.

If using a frying pan, put a little oil in the pan first to help keep the burgers from sticking. A trick my mother uses when making burgers in a cast iron frying pan is to sprinkle the bottom of the pan with a little salt. The salt acts sort of like ball bearings, keeping the patties from sticking when you go to flip them.

5 Serve the burgers: Toast the buns and serve the burgers with the accompaniments of your choice—sliced onions, lettuce, sliced tomatoes, bacon, mayonnaise (especially good with mayo), mustard, relish, and/or ketchup.