best healthy turkey burger recipes that actually taste good

We constantly find ourselves asking the question why no love for turkey burgers? They’re cheap, lean, and far healthier than their bovine equivalent. Unfortunately, everyone has probably had at least one bad experience with a turkey burger that was as dry and flavorless as a hockey puck. So to disprove the myth that turkey burgers have to be bland, we’re giving you 13 recipes that are anything but boring.

While some of the add-ons may make them not all that much healthier than beef, they’re at least a nice change of pace once in a while.

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When you're cooking indoors, a cast iron skillet will give your turkey burger a nice crust.
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1. Breakfast Turkey Burgers

Breakfast Turkey Burger recipe

Chowhound

A healthier alternative to the sausage-egg-and-cheese, our version replaces fatty (and somewhat unhealthy) pork with homemade turkey sausage. It’s so flavorful that you’ll forget you’re eating turkey. Get our Breakfast Turkey Burger recipe.

2. Turkey Patty Melt

Turkey Patty Melt recipe

Chowhound

Want that patty melt taste with a little less guilt? Try our recipe for a turkey version. The flavors are all there and you won’t miss the extra calories that are cut when you switch from beef to turkey. Make sure to follow our advice and use dark meat turkey, if you can find it, since it has more flavor and will stay moist more readily than leaner white meat. Get our Turkey Patty Melt recipe.

3. Guacamole Turkey Burgers

Guacamole Turkey Burger recipe

Chowhound

Seasoned with Southwestern flavors and topped with a healthy portion of guacamole, this turkey burger is the perfect recipe for a south of the border mid-week meal. While not explicitly stated in the recipe, this is best served with a tall margarita or cerveza. Get our Guacamole Turkey Burger recipe.

4. Chipotle Bacon Turkey Burgers

Chipotle Bacon Turkey Burger recipe

Chowhound

Given the mild natural flavor of turkey breast, the protein needs some strong flavors to truly shine. Boosted with umami thanks to soy sauce and anchovies (before you eww, just try it) and topped with chipotle ketchup, this burger is about as flavorful as they come. Get our Chipotle Bacon Turkey Burger recipe.

5. Mushroom Turkey Burgers

Mushroom Turkey Burger recipe

Chowhound

With mushrooms and mint mixed into the ground turkey, these burgers might sound a little odd, but they’re a great way to sneak extra vegetables into your meal while amping up both the meaty flavor and the moisture content of the turkey patties. Get the Mushroom Turkey Burger recipe.

6. BBQ Bacon Turkey Burgers

BBQ Bacon Turkey Burger recipe

Chowhound

Just because you’re making a turkey burger doesn’t mean it HAS to be a healthy one. This bacon- and cheese-laden turkey burger is all the proof you need, but pickled jalapeños cut through the richness so the taste stays fresh and not too fatty. Get our BBQ Bacon Turkey Burger recipe.

7. Bobby Flay’s Turkey Burgers

Bobby Flay turkey burger recipe

Food Network

Say what you want about Bobby Flay, the man does know how to cook. We think you’ll really enjoy his elevated version of the turkey burger. The goat cheese and Meyer lemon honey mustard combo is a real winner. Get Bobby Flay’s Turkey Burger recipe.

8. Tasty Turkey Burgers

Tasty Turkey Burger recipe

anniesnomsblog/Genius Kitchen

This is your basic, go-to turkey burger recipe. No fancy ingredients are required (just some dry breadcrumbs and Worcestershire sauce, which kind of give it a turkey meatloaf feel…), but when something’s right, there’s no need to add anything extra. We have a feeling that this could become one of your “whatever’s left in the fridge” weekday dinner staples. Get the Tasty Turkey Burger recipe.

9. Buffalo Turkey Burgers with Buffalo Blue Cheese Sauce

Buffalo Turkey Burger recipe

Recipe Runner

If you’re a believer of the fact that everything is better with buffalo sauce, then this recipe from Recipe Runner is for you—it’s got buffalo flavor in spades. Perfect for game night or any night. Get the Buffalo Turkey Burgers with Buffalo Blue Cheese Sauce recipe.

10. Roasted Jalapeno Cheddar Turkey Burgers with BBQ Aioli

Roasted Jalapeno Cheddar Turkey Burgers with BBQ Aioli recipe

How Sweet Eats

How do you elevate a normal turkey burger, often of the dry variety, to something you actually look forward to eating? Use turkey that’s only 94-95 percent lean instead of the 98 percent lean stuff. The extra fat will add some much needed moisture and flavor. Adding a healthy dose of chipotle aioli and melted cheese won’t hurt either (well, not the flavor, anyway). Get the Roasted Jalapeno Cheddar Turkey Burgers with BBQ Aioli recipe.

11. Turkey Burgers with Tomato Jam, Olives and Feta

Turkey Burgers with Tomato Jam, Olives and Feta (Mediterranean Turkey Burger recipe)

Gail Albert Halaban/Bon Appetit

For a Mediterranean take on the turkey burger, try this recipe from the kitchen of Bon Appetit featuring feta, olives, and garlic. While the recipe calls for tomato jam (and we happen to have our own Tomato Jam recipe), you could easily substitute one of your favorite store-bought Mediterranean condiments. Get the Turkey Burgers with Tomato Jam, Olives and Feta recipe.

12. Thai Turkey Burgers with Crispy Kale

Thai Turkey Burger recipe

Will Heap/Epicurious

If the streets of Bangkok were filled with burger vendors, we imagine this is what they would be serving. From Epicurious, this burger is packed with traditional Thai flavors like lemongrass and fiery Thai chilis. In warmer weather, skip the boiling step and throw these burgers on the grill. Get the Thai Turkey Burgers with Crispy Kale recipe.

13. Perfect Turkey Burgers

Perfect Turkey Burger recipe

Food Network

With a bold claim that this recipe is for the “Perfect Turkey Burger,” we had our doubts. But based on the consistently stellar reviews, this turkey burger from the Food Network may actually hold that title—assuming, of course, you haven’t made one of ours already. Get the Perfect Turkey Burger recipe.

For more tips, tricks, and healthy recipes, check out our healthy living page.

Tired of turkey burgers but don’t have the energy to meal plan much else? Try one of our favorite meal kit delivery services for easy, healthy, and delicious dinners.

Related Video: How to Make Greek Turkey Burgers

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Dan McKay is a Canadian actor, film director, screenwriter, and musician—oh wait, that’s Ryan Gosling. Dan is a Philly-based freelance writer, photographer, and digital marketer. He has written for Eater and Thrillist, in addition to other publications. Outside of work, you might run across him in the Asian market or in one of Philly’s local drinking establishments.
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