Southwestern Turkey Burgers

Southwestern Turkey Burgers

Today, let’s talk turkey!

Turkey burgers have come a long way right? They used to be this dried out “healthy alternative” to a REAL burger but now I find it’s just another iteration of poultry that I really enjoy. The only problem? If you have a red-meat-loving spouse at home it can be challenging to talk them out of the Turkey Burger = Fake Burger headspace.

For years when I’d suggest making turkey burgers Garrett would kind of groan and suggest that we eat something different. That is until I made these burgers one night. It’s a play on an old Rachael Ray recipe that I adapted when we went Paleo because it was that tasty! It’s been making appearances on my meal plans forever but I have never blogged it, which is silly because it is absolutely a staple in our house. The key to making it not taste like a “fake” burger? Tons of different flavors.

Southwestern Turkey Burgers 1

Turkey is a blank canvas and alone it can be a little bit bland. But that makes it the perfect type of meat to mix with smoky, spicy Southwestern flavors and crispy sweet peppers. Add a little touch of your favorite hot sauce and some jalapenos dialed up to your desired heat level and your turkey is all of a sudden a flavor force to be reckoned with.

Southwestern Turkey Burgers Ingredients

The nice thing about this recipe is you  just dump everything in a bowl and mix. I say just get your  hands dirty, but you can also mix it up with a fork. Turkey is pretty forgiving and doesn’t get too tough like ground beef does if you overmix it. Grill or fry up in a pan and serve over a giant bed of greens. Your dinner will be done in less than a half hour and you won’t feel at all like you are eating a healthified version of something. If you want to get really spicy top it off with some smoked jalapeno kraut. That stuff is the real deal and so is this burger!

Southwestern Turkey Burgers 2


Southwestern Turkey Burgers

Author: Adapted from Rachael Ray
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 15 mins
Total time: 30 mins
  • 1.25 lbs of ground turkey, preferably dark meat
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 large shallot or 1/4 red onion, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 small bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely diced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce
  • 2 teaspoons grill seasoning
  • 1 Tablespoon Coconut oil
  1. Combine turkey, garlic, shallot, thyme, parsley, bell pepper, jalapeno, cumin, hot sauce and grill seasoning in a medium bowl and mix until combined
  2. Dived mixture into 6 equal mounds and then form into patties.
  3. Heat coconut oil in skilled over medium high heat
  4. Add patties and cook 5 to 6 minutes per side
  5. Serve on a giant bed of lightly dressed greens
  6. Enjoy!
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14 Responses to Southwestern Turkey Burgers

  1. Emily says:

    Holly, you have a future in food writing – I was downright SALIVATING on that 3rd paragraph! This is definitely going on my meal plan this week. Admittedly, I have found turkey a little boring… usually it makes its way into my rotation in the form of Whole30’s Breakfast Broccoli Hash, but that’s about it.

    Also, I am one of those people you have to talk out of the burgers = red meat headspace. But southwestern flavors are my jam, so I’m psyched to try this!

    • Holly says:

      Thanks Emily! You’re the sweetest. That would be my dream job…can I just sit around and write and talk about and eat food all day. Yes, please! I have never seen the Breakfast Broccoli Hash…is that in ISWF or on the website? Sounds right up my alley.

      • Emily says:

        It is in the downloadable Whole30 Success Guide I purchased back in 2010. Perhaps they’ve updated it and took out the recipe? Not sure. But broccoli and ground turkey is good with a little herbs thrown in 🙂

  2. I just pulled some ground turkey out of my freezer, although I was already planning on making a meatball recipe out of my Practical Paleo cookbook. These burgers look yummy though, I need to revisit this later!

  3. Beth says:

    This is perfect! I just ordered 15 lbs of ground turkey (got overly excited when I saw a post on happy turkeys the same day our chest freezer was delivered). I thought we were going to be eating a lot of boring turkey chili, but I think not now. If only I could get Farmhouse kraut in Seattle!

  4. Dani says:

    Is this link the only way to procure this delicious kraut?? Looks so damn good.

    • Holly says:

      I buy this particular brand at Whole Foods (not sure if they do online sales) but I know that Fab Ferments does online sales and they have a similar product. I haven’t tried it, but it’s an option. JALAPENO KRAUT HAS CHANGED MY LIFE! 🙂

  5. Kat says:

    That recipe looks delicious, but Foster Farms?! FYI you can get Kosher (no antibiotics / hormones) ground turkey breast at Trader Joe’s.

    • Holly says:

      HA! I’m surprised you were the first person who mentioned that. I’m pretty open that I’m not always a saint in the kitchen when it comes to my meat purchases. I juggle my budget how I see fit and this week Costco (and Foster Farms) won!

  6. Alicia says:

    These look great! I have a bunch of pickled jalapenos that I canned over the summer, and I’ve been looking for new recipe ideas to put them to use. I made some mango turkey burgers with red onions (recipe on the blog) after a friend started raving about them. You’re so right about moving out of the burger = red meat mindset. Can’t wait to try this burger!

  7. Emily says:

    Ok, we had these for dinner last night and OMG they were SO GOOD!! My husband (a turkey burger hater) could not stop raving about them. AND he’s not a spicy person either, so this was a double-win!!