Turkey Burger Recipe

4.86 from 118 votes

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This Turkey Burger Recipe will be the juiciest and most delicious burger you ever did make. One secret ingredient takes these babies over the top! Simple to make on the grill or stovetop, flavorful, and obviously super moist. Serve with homemade French Fries, Kettle Chips, or a Macaroni Salad. Yum!

Turkey Burger Recipe

Turkey Burgers: Healthy and Delicious

Believe it or not, lots of you readers are looking for a good, juicy turkey burger recipe. I love making turkey burgers because they are much lower in saturated fat than a traditional beef burger but still taste great. Not all turkey burger recipes are created equal and this one reigns supreme. Even though they can be notoriously dry, I’ve come up with a solution that keeps the burgers moist and juicy whether you’re grilling them on a BBQ or inside on a griddle.

Why are Turkey Burgers Dry?

Like I mentioned above, ground turkey is much lower in fat than ground beef, thus making a drier burger patty once its cooked. If you use a lean ground beef to make your burgers, you’ll get a similar dry result. It really all comes down to fat content. While ground turkey certainly cuts down on some calories, a lot of people don’t like turkey burgers because they are so dry. So, how can we make a moist and juicy turkey burger you ask? Here’s my secret:

My Secret Ingredient: Butter

While I use lots of relatively basic ingredients to form my turkey burger patties (ground turkey, egg, poultry seasoning, milk, etc..), the secret really is filling each burger patty with 1/2 tablespoon of butter. Yes, that’s right. Butter! It adds flavor and moisture that helps to keep the turkey burgers nice and moist without adding too much extra fat or additional calories.

Love turkey burgers? I’ve got lots of variations for you: Cheddar Ranch Turkey Burgers, Girls Night Turkey Burgers, Southwest Turkey Burgers, Greek Turkey Burgers.

How to Make Turkey Burgers

Make Turkey Burger Patties

Into a large bowl, add in lean ground turkey, milk, egg, salt, pepper, parsley, and poultry seasoning. Mix to create a uniform mixture, then divide into 4 equal portions. The milk will help the patties stay tender and moist, the egg will hold the patties together and the salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning make this turkey burger recipe delicious! The parsley is purely for looks.

Form each portion into a turkey patty. Cut cold butter into 1/2 tablespoon slices and press into each turkey burger patty. Form the meat evenly around the butter. If you don’t think your patties are firm enough, throw them in the freezer for 10-15 minutes.

A Note About Ground Turkey

In my experience living coast to coast, I’ve come to realize the differences in quality and excess moisture across different brands of ground turkey. Some of it is moister, some of it is drier. (In my photos, you’ll notice my formed burgers look perfectly normal because I used 99% fat free ground turkey.) Typically the leaner the turkey, the ‘drier’ it is. So, for ease, use a leaner ground turkey. Adding milk to the patty and stuffing each patty with butter will help keep your turkey burgers moist and juicy.

If you make this recipe and notice you have wet turkey meat, try decreasing the milk OR add in a few plain bread crumbs to make it easier to work with. If the mixture for the turkey burgers is still a little too sticky, do your best to form the burgers and then give them a quick freeze, especially if you’re wanting to grill these outdoors. Turkey burgers are easier to cook on an indoor griddle when they are ‘sticky’.

raw turkey patties with a slice of butter placed on top of each one

Grill Your Turkey Burgers

Preheat your desired cooking surface nonstick skillet, cast iron or electric griddle or outdoor BBQ grill. Be sure to grease well or spray the patties with nonstick cooking spray, whichever is easier. An indoor grill that has a bottom and top plate to ‘squish’ the patties to cook are not recommended (I’m looking at you George Foreman.)

How Do You Know When Turkey Burgers Are Done? How Long Does it Take to Cook a Turkey Burger?

Cook turkey patties for about 4 minutes per side, until browned. Turkey Burgers are done when they have an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Once they reach 165 degrees F, pull them from the grill. Overcooking your burgers can cause a dry patty, so be sure to get them off the grill once that internal temperature is reached. Do not cut into your turkey burgers to see if they’re fully cooked. You will lose all the butter and end up with a drier burger. Trust your thermometer. Remove from the grill and rest about 10 minutes covered with foil to rest.

Can a Turkey Burger Be Pink in the Middle?

No. Any poultry of any kind needs to be fully cooked to 165 degrees F to be safe to eat. While ground beef can be eaten rare, chicken and turkey needs to be cooked completely, all the way through. Invest in an instant read thermometer. This is the one I have that I would recommend.

raw turkey patties on a white plate

Build Your Turkey Burger

Once your turkey burgers are done resting, you can gather some toppings and build the turkey burger of your dreams! Really, the sky is the limit. I prefer the usual lettuce, tomato pickle, but here are a few other options if you’re feeling creative.

What to Put on a Turkey Burger

  • American cheese, sharp cheddar, colby jack or blue cheese. Yum!
  • lettuce
  • tomatoes
  • thinly sliced red onions
  • dill pickle chips
  • sliced avocado
  • sautéed mushrooms
  • mayonnaise
  • ketchup
  • mustard
  • BBQ sauce
  • ranch dressing
  • chick-fil-a sauce
  • relish
  • bacon
  • french fried onions
  • a fried egg
close up of assembled turkey burger

How Many Calories Are in a Turkey Burger?

This Turkey Burger Recipe is 198 calories per burger patty with 8.2 grams of fat and 28.6 grams of protein. This doesn’t include the cheese, the bun or any toppings. The patty itself is very low carb and you can keep this low carb by serving on lettuce leaves instead of a burger bun and topping with just veggies, mustard and sugar free ketchup.

Freezing Turkey Patties

You can also freeze your turkey patties to keep them fresh for up to 3 months! Follow the directions up until you form the meat around the butter. After doing this freeze patties in a single layer on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet (about an hour). Once frozen, transfer patties to an airtight freezer-safe container, separated by pieces of parchment paper. To use, thaw in the fridge overnight then cook as desired.

hand holding turkey burger with a bite taken out of it

What to Serve with Turkey Burgers

Like any other burger recipe, there are side dish staples to serve with it. I’ve picked out a few of my own recipes that you can make alongside this juicy and tasty recipe.

4.86 from 118 votes

The Best Turkey Burger Recipe

This Turkey Burger Recipe will be the juiciest, most delicious burger you ever did make. One secret ingredient takes these over the top!
servings 4 burgers
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Total Time 18 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 lb lean ground turkey 93/7 or 99% fat-free
  • 1 large egg
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon cold milk
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter
  • 4 slices American cheese
  • any other burger toppings: pickles, lettuce, tomato, onion, etc as desired
  • 4 soft sesame burger buns

Instructions

  • Place turkey into a large bowl with egg, salt, pepper, parsley, poultry seasoning and milk. Stir to combine. {Mixture may seem a little wet, but once it starts cooking, the egg will help hold it’s shape together.}
  • Preheat indoor griddle to medium-medium high heat.
  • Divide meat into 4 even patties. Cut butter into skinny half tablespoon pats. Press butter into the center of each patty forming the meat around it.
  • Spray griddle pan with nonstick cooking spray and place each burger down onto the griddle. Cook about 4 minutes per side or until browned and completely cooked. Feel free to melt cheese on top of each burger. {Place cheese onto cooked side of the burger and cover with a large pot lid or foil for 1 minute to melt cheese.}
  • Remove burgers and place onto buns. Top with any desired toppings and condiments and serve.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 434kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 161mg | Sodium: 709mg | Potassium: 338mg | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 515IU | Vitamin C: 0.6mg | Calcium: 327mg | Iron: 3.1mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: juicy turkey burger, turkey burger, turkey burger recipe, turkey burgers

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Recipe Rating




174 Responses
  1. Christine

    5 stars
    Thank you, for once, a recipe that is simple, has ingredients you would normally keep in the kitchen, easy to make and tastes incredible!!! I’ve been so fed up recently with internet recipes with loads of ingredients that take so long to make and the end result is just meh…..this is so refreshing! My husband and 8 year old son love these and they are the fussiest eaters I know!

  2. Crystal

    5 stars
    Delicious and juicy! After the first bite we could hardly stop ourselves from devouring these burgers. So juicy and flavorful. Thank you so much for the recipe.

  3. Nikki

    5 stars
    I was nervous when I saw how wet the mixture was, but threw it on the countertop grill and they were perfect! Most moist turkey burgers Ive ever made actually.

  4. Madison

    2 stars
    Crumbles to pieces, does not hold together well. Needs more seasoning. I added some more seasoning and bread crumbs and it came out better.

  5. Karen Gee

    5 stars
    I made these today for lunch (we are an occasional turkey burger family)…my son was asking me how come it’s so juicy???!!! 😂 Like it was a bad thing (little does he know!) I didn’t have poultry seasoning, so I substituted it with Italian seasoning and added dry chopped onions. We didn’t have any hamburger buns, we used sliced sourdough bread (cut them in half and worked very well!). The only thing is trying to manipulate the patty, my first attempt was using my hands, but it was really sticky! Next round I used a spatula and scooped the patty portion into the pan and smashed the butter and formed the patty. SO JUICY!!

  6. Rachel Rearden

    5 stars
    Very good! I used olive oil instead of Pam. And took the advice of the comment that said swiss and mushroom. And added a little celery salt.

  7. Dave

    5 stars
    I stumbled on this recipe on a random search to fulfill a quest to make a juicy turkey burger. That was 2 weeks ago…I have made this recipe 3 times since. I can’t believe how good it is. I can’t believe how good it is! It is worth saying it twice. The trick is the milk and butter. I used chopped apples, parsley, and cumin. My family loves the burgers and my wife even asked for it on mother’s day! This is how I will make burgers from now on. It was that good!

  8. Sandra

    5 stars
    The juiciest turkey burgers! Made my Mexican mom a believer; she didn’t want to put milk but she finally agreed to because I insisted we follow the recipe…anyway she’s making them again tonight! My one year old kept saying mmmm mmm mmm as she ate up the small patty we cut into pieces for her!!!! Thanks for the recipe!!! Delicioso!!!

  9. Brenda

    4 stars
    I’m hooked. This recipe worked like a dream. The Alberta beef eating boyfriend even said “damn I’d do these again”! That’s impressive. I put them in the freezer before cooking to harden them up a bit. Mine were very wet and sticky. I tried to bbq them but with the melting butter inside it just caused too many drip flames so I transferred them to the air fryer and finished them off in there. Thank you for this recipe. Loved it.

  10. Chelsea @ Mae's Menu

    Butter inside of a burger?! My mind is blown!!! 100% genius! I can’t wait to try these bad boys! Thanks so much for sharing. Your site is beautiful!

  11. Stephanie L Charron

    5 stars
    I thought the idea of a turkey burger was odd until I made this recipe! I don’t even want to make beef burgers ever again. They are so flavorful and juicy. My boyfriend and I are having them again tonight for the 5th or 6th time since finding this recipe about a month ago!! Thank you!

  12. Alex H.

    5 stars
    I am by no means a great chef, but damn this recipe is easy and delicious! Even 99/1 works great with it as well, sauté some onion and you’re set! Thanks

  13. Michael Freed

    5 stars
    Lauren,
    I’ve tried several turkey burger recipes and after seeing yours, I thought to give it a try. This is by far the very best way to create a turkey burger! The mayo had me wondering, but after my wife and I tasted, we were sold. Just the right amount of ingredients and prep made this so easy. I grilled them and used my grill mat to prevent burning and uneven temp.
    I did what you suggested and placed the burger patties in the freezer for an about an hour before putting on the grill. Stayed together and it was easy to brush lightly with olive oil on both side just before placing on grill mat. So good and juicy with flavor that made it memorable.

  14. Catherine

    5 stars
    These were the best turkey burgers I’ve every made! I used soymilk and vegan butter (Im lactose intolerant) and they were so soft and juicy, they even reheated a day later like a dream. I will definitely make these again!

  15. WhitJ

    I was wondering if I would be able to bake this recipe instead, and if so, what temperature I should use and changes I should make, if any?

  16. Vanessa

    5 stars
    These were great. Not sure how much healthier they are than beef 😉 but very tasty none the less. They were pretty sticky (we used Jenny-O 93/7). I recommend placing on wax paper once formed before going on the grill and make sure that the grill is oiled as noted in the recipe.

  17. Kristin

    5 stars
    I didn’t have the parsley or poultry seasoning on hand, so I added some steak seasoning and kept the rest of the recipe the same. When I first made them I was like “this is not right” but they were AMAZING! I grilled them outside, and once they hit the grill, they stayed together and cooked nicely, and were SO MOIST and tasty! I only wished I’d made extra because I would have eaten TWO!! YUM! Thank you!

  18. Anita

    5 stars
    Thank you for a great recipe! The burgers were so juicy and my entire family love them! I can’t wait to try these on the grill.

  19. Jen R.

    5 stars
    I made these turkey burgers for my husband and son tonight. I added a small amount of a bbq chicken seasoning for added flavor and I used cheddar jack pre-shredded since that’s what I had on hand. I cooked them on my indoor grill with lid open for four minutes on each side. Then put the lid down for two more minutes to get a little char and get them up to temp all the way. Empty plates and happy guys! They said they were very juicy and tasty. Will make again for sure.

  20. Brenda

    5 stars
    I tweaked the spices slightly because I forgot the parsley, and I added onion and garlic powder out of sheer force of habit. Other than that I followed the recipe exactly as written and these were absolutely delicious. I struggle to get my 4yo to eat a hot meal, but I gave him half of one of these bad boys with lettuce and pickle and mayochup along with a handful of airfried sweet potato wedge “fries” and he went CRAZY for it. I’m going to get about 5 pounds of lean ground turkey and make a whole bunch of patties to freeze because this is going in rotation for SURE.

    They are a little fragile, but that’s to be expected with a turkey burger. One of my new favorite recipes!

  21. Rusty

    5 stars
    I really thought I did something wrong, because the mixture was so incredibly wet. However, once I started cooking them on the griddle, they hardened right up, just like the recipe said they would. And, they were fantastic! So juicy and flavorful. Everyone in the house loved them. I highly recommend this recipe. Trust the recipe and follow it exactly the first time before making adjustments.

  22. Sarah Joanne Doyle

    5 stars
    Such a good recipe!! We now love turkey burgers, make them about 2-3 times/month, and they turn out delicious every time. For seasoning we do 1 tsp dried parsley and 1 tsp Montreal steak seasoning since we didn’t prefer the taste of the poultry seasonings we tried.

  23. Paul

    5 stars
    I love a good turkey burger. Problem is, they’re very illusive. I recently went to a local establishment and had their ‘honeysuckle’ turkey burger. It was outstanding and it got me wanting to try my own. So, I searched and found this recipe. BAM! This is, by far, the very best turkey burger recipe I’ve ever made or, even, ate out. I would recommend this to anyone that might think turkey burgers can be juicy and tasty. Nice job chef.

  24. Cici

    5 stars
    These were so juicy and delicious! Finally! I’ve been searching for a turkey burger recipe that works. I used unsweetened almond milk in place of milk with no issues. And velveeta cheese, which was fantastic- I usually use cheddar but followed your suggestion of “american” cheese (kind of). So yummy.

  25. Ginny

    4 stars
    Delicious. I have to admit that I was skeptical about putting butter in the middle of my turkey burgers, but these were truly juicy and delicious! I did throw in a few TBSP of breadcrumbs only because I had difficulty shaping the patties without them. The burgers were still perfectly moist. I cooked them in a non-stick pan and they came out great. This recipe is definitely getting bookmarked on my computer!

  26. David Martin

    4 stars
    I Love a juicy Turkey Burger – but your recipe doesn’t do it for me. Cooking turkey to 165°F definitely dries it out and ruins the texture. Your melted butter trick is just a mask. The USDA says turkey is fully pasteurized (safe to eat) in less than 4 minutes @150°. If you cook your patties to 145° internal and let them rest 5 minutes they will easily reach 150°. Talk about juicy! Next, the egg. You do not need egg to help hold the patty together, plus the egg just makes the texture less like fresh ground meat. The butter is a great idea, but your application is not. I’ve found that melting the butter in half & half or cream (forget the watery milk) and blending that into the turkey mix makes the most juicy Turkey Burger ever! And its easy to get a beautiful char…

  27. Jen

    5 stars
    We have made these so many times now I felt it only right I leave a review! This might be the favorite meal in our house. We have grown to love these much more than beef burgers, these are the BEST turkey burgers!! 10/10 will be making these for years to come.

  28. Jennifer M Melton

    5 stars
    Turkey burger recipe was awesome. I used swiss cheese which I like better with turkey. I also used garlic mayo and a low carb wrap instead of bun 2 make it low carb. Thank u 4 this recipe

  29. Chris H.

    1 star
    Unfortunately the most bland turkey burger I have ever made.!

    I love to cook and experiment with new dishes. When I had a craving for turkey burgers I thought I could go with my tried and true recipe that everyone likes or venture with something new. I came across Lauren’s recipe and thought, “hey, why not give it a try!” I followed the recipe to the letter and all I can say is that nobody liked them (family of three) and was without question thee most bland/tasteless turkey burger I have ever had or made.

    Go forth with your own opinions and if you like this recipe then great! For me, I will never make again or recommend.

  30. Linda

    5 stars
    Fabulous, juicy burger!
    I am following a keto diet, so I simply add up my carbs (egg and milk, mostly) and skip the soft bun. Low carb. Kids love it. I love it, I serve it with a side Caesar salad (no croutons for me). Yum! This is now a regular in our menu plans.
    This is a crazy juicy burger!

  31. Mary

    5 stars
    Oh My Gosh!

    I have recently taken a liking to Turkey burgers. This recipe was outstanding. I did pop them in the freezer to help firm up and cooked them on a electric griddle. I think I would have failed if I used my grill. Great job Lauren!

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