Here’s a turkey burger recipe that produces moist and flavorful patties. The main trick is to get the meat to a safe temperature without overcooking it and an instant read digital thermometer is the only way to go. The other trick with ground turkey is to prevent the meat from sticking to the grill or skillet. A well seasoned and oiled grill or cast iron skillet, pre-heated and screaming hot, will sear the meat and release them when it’s time to flip. A good sear will also prevent the burgers from falling apart. To prevent sticking on the grill, always brush oil directly on the burgers before placing them on the grate.
Dried herbs can be used instead of fresh ones; however, they are more intense in flavor and the amounts should be cut in half. Also, to allow dried herbs to rehydrate, cover and refrigerate the patties for 30 minutes before cooking.
- 1 lb. ground turkey (85/15 lean/fat ratio preferred for a moister burger)
- 1 egg, beaten
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 1 to 2 Tablespoons of fresh chopped herbs (basil, sage, rosemary, or any combination preferred - even just basil alone provides great flavor)
- Sea salt (or Kosher salt) and black pepper to taste (3 to 4 pinches of each)
- Canola or vegetable oil (for frying or grilling)
- Sliced cheese (optional - cheddar, Monterey Jack, Swiss, etc.)
- Condiments (ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard, pickles)
- Vegetables (lettuce, sliced tomatoes, sliced onion)
- Hamburger buns
- If using a grill, preheat the grill on high, clean and oil the grate; otherwise, heat a well seasoned cast iron skillet on the stove until it is very hot. If the grill or skillet are not well seasoned and oiled, the patties will stick.
- Meanwhile, mix the turkey, egg, onion, herbs and salt together by hand and form four equal size patties measuring about 3 to 4 inches in diameter.
- If using a grill, brush oil on both sides of the patties; if using a cast iron skillet, pour a scant tablespoon of oil into the skillet and swirl to coat the pan.
- Grill or fry the patties for approximately 5 to 6 minutes per side, until the internal temperature reaches 160º F (use an instant read digital thermometer). Only flip the patties once, and don’t flip until a crust has formed or they’ll probably fall apart. When grilling, brush more oil on the uncooked side of the patty before flipping it.
- If cheese burgers are desired, place the cheese slices on top of the patties after they have been flipped and cooked an additional two minutes or so. To make the cheese melt more quickly, cover the skillet with a lid or cover with a metal cake pan on the grill.
- Serve on hamburger buns with condiments and vegetables.
Looking for an instant read digital thermometer? Here’s a great one on Amazon.