Southwest Turkey Burgers

It’s time for a recipe, don’t you think?

Tonight I made an old stand-by meal and probably Bryan’s favorite dinner — Southwest Turkey Burgers. Or as Bryan and I call them, Turkey Bean Burgers (you’ll see why in a bit).

I’ve been making these for years and they are so delicious,  easy and healthy. They’re made with ground turkey and mixed with all kinds of great things like salsa, cheese, red beans … yum! I’ve been known to add a veggie puree to these if I have one ready to use.

Seriously, Bryan asks for these all the time.  Sophie loves them too (except tonight when I put too much spicy salsa in it; but otherwise she really does love them)

Remember I don’t measure ingredients, so these measurements are approximations. But you won’t mess it up if you add a little more or less of anything.

Oh, and I often double the recipe and freeze half of the burgers for an easy future dinner. Seriously, you’re gonna love these!

Southwest Turkey Burgers

1 package ground turkey

1/4 – 1/2 cup salsa (If using jarred with lots of flavor, use about 1/4 cup. If  using fresh, go with 1/2 cup and DRAIN it.)

1/2 – 3/4 cup cheddar cheese (feel free to add more … or less)

1/4 cup bread crumbs* (I’ve used both Italian seasoned and Panko)

1 egg*

1 can drained red kidney beans (funny, I know, but they are really good)

Salt and pepper to taste

Canola oil for cooking

Before starting, have a cookie sheet lined with wax paper ready to go.

Place all ingredients (except oil) into a large bowl and mix. The best way to combine this stuff is with clean hands. Shape the mixture into approximately six burgers, and place them on the cookie sheet.

Here’s the trick for making turkey burgers that don’t fall apart when you cook them: Refrigerate the burgers for at least 30 minutes (the longer the better).

When you’re ready to cook, heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add canola oil. When the oil is hot, place the turkey burgers into the skillet. When it’s about half-way cooked through (maybe 15 minutes), turn and cook an additional 15 minutes. Since it’s turkey, I always use a meat thermometer to make sure they get to 165-degrees before eating.

Drain on paper towels and serve. I suppose you can serve these on a bun or with salsa on the side. But we just enjoy them plain. And let me assure you, they are far from plain!

And I like to serve mine with Trader Joe’s crinkle cut french fries.

*You can eliminate the egg or bread crumbs if there is an egg or wheat allergy. Just make sure you refrigerate for a while since that’s the key to holding these things together.

By the way, I’m still eating less meat. This was one of my only meat consumption of the weekend.

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