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turkey burgers?

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Anyone have a great turkey burger recipe that WON'T fall apart on the bbq? I seem to have had bad luck with some great tasting recipes, that always fall apart when you "flip" them.

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  1. Not sure this is the right board for this topic, maybe try Home Cooking? In any case, I'd look at what kind of meat you're using. Some ground turkey has a lot of skin included, and I've noticed that kind isn't the best for burgers. I've had better luck with 100% ground breast meat.

    1. Unlike beef, you need to handle poultry more so it binds to itself, so mix it up with whatever seasonings you add until it's more of a paste. Then lightly spray the grill - or, better, the burgers - so they won't stick. They are much stickier than beef.

      BTW, ground chicken is more flexible. It takes seasoning much more than turkey so you can make burgers that taste radically different depending on your mood. I like mixing in feta or blue cheese, various peppers, different spices. You can make a middle eastern taste, for example, without a strong poultry (turkey) taste. A little yogurt sauce and you have a neat dish.

      1. I found this recipe on a Kate's blog

        http://cooknkate.wordpress.com/2007/0...

        And made it myself - it was delicious.

        1. Are you adding a binder to the meat? I would add egg (pref. yolks) and/or a dry binder like bread crumbs or my favorite rolled oats. With turkey I find this helps keep it all together. I also add a good amount of grated onion to help keep it moist. Also make sure not to flip multiple times. Flip only once if you can help it.

          1. The Cook's Illustrated recipe for turkey burgers has ricotta mixed in for moisture - other than that, I agree that more handling is necessary. A 2-instrument flip might help too (2 spatulas, 1 spatula/1 tongs, etc)

            1 Reply
            1. re: laurendlewis

              I'm with lergnom - my turkey burger recipe uses feta (sometimes regular, sometimes garlic and herb or tomato and basil), I add my spices (some fresh black pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic powder) or regular chopped garlic, a smidge of olive oil and breadcrumbs (just a little), diced red pepper and spinach. I patty them up and I have found that because I put in a touch of olive oil - they don't tend to stick. I put it on a whole wheat bun with stone ground or dijon mustard .... and it's ready to go.

            2. The easiest trick I have for keeping turkey burgers "together" on the grill is to stick 'em in the freezer. The longer the better, but even 20 minutes or so makes a HUGE difference. The ice crystals that form do a super job of holding the surface of the burger together AND helping to keep the much needed moisture inside the patty.

              If you want to be super efficient about it I have found that a nice stiff piece of bakeware (like a pin tin or jelly roll pan) covered in plastic wrap makes the ideal carrier and surface for setting the burgers into the freezer to get a quick, deep chill / light freeze. If you do them ahead of time and they freeze completely I have noticed no ill effects (other than slightly lengthened cooking time) to putting the patties on the grill frozen as hard as hockey pucks, so long as they are less than 3/4 of inch or so thick. Thicker than that and you have issues with the surface drying out before the center is fully cooked...