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I start incorporating grilling into our weekly meal plan as soon as spring is here and it's warm enough to stand on the deck and barbecue without getting frostbite. Actually, my husband makes me wait until he can turn on the propane tank without wearing winter gloves.
Seriously though, we just love grilled meats, vegetables, burgers - pretty much anything cooked on the grill is delicious, but it can be tricky to stay on a healthy-eating track once grilling season comes and so do high-fat beef burgers, smokies, hot dogs, steaks...you get the idea. It's always a challenge to find healthy recipes for the barbecue, but this one is amazing! These turkey burgers are so juicy and they're bursting with flavour, but they don't contain an enormous amount of fat and calories, they're full of vegetables and they can even be made with oat flour, making them gluten-free!
The Sriracha mayo complements the flavours in the burger so well and it gives the meal a nice spicy kick. The man in your life may scoff at the idea of a turkey burger, but trust me - these are just as juicy and flavourful as any beef burger I've ever had!
Turkey Burgers with Spinach and Sriracha Mayo (makes 6 large or 8 medium burgers)
For the burgers:
About 500 grams of fresh lean ground turkey meat
1 large carrot, grated
1/2 cup chopped fresh spinach
1/3 cup breadcrumbs or gluten free oat flour
2 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
1/4 cup red onion, minced
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
a pinch or two of salt and pepper
For the Sriracha mayo:
1/3 cup low-fat mayonnaise (if you're looking for a mayo substitute that's egg-free, Vegenaise is a good option)
1-2 tsp Sriracha hot sauce (add more or less depending on how much heat you like)
1/4 tsp lime juice
Buns of your choice
Add the ground turkey meat, grated carrot, chopped spinach, oat flour, garlic, onion, egg, spices and salt and pepper to a large bowl.
Use your hands to combine all these ingredients together, mixing well until everything is combined. Using your hands creates a nice even texture and it ensures everything is evenly mixed.
Divide the mixture into 6 or 8 equal pieces and form each piece into a patty shape. Be careful not to make them too thick (they won't cook evenly) or too thin (they might break apart in the middle).
If you're sensing that the mixture is too sticky to form into patties, just add another 2-3 tablespoons of oat flour or breadcrumbs. Moisture levels in meat can vary and even the size of the egg can make a difference in the texture of the meat mixture. A little extra breadcrumbs or oat flour will absorb some of that moisture and help with forming the patties.
Grill the patties on a propane barbecue that's been preheated to low or medium-low. You can also use a skillet heated to medium low with a little bit of olive oil.
Most barbecues don't have an exact temperature, but grilling these burgers on medium-low heat for about 7-8 minutes per side usually does the trick. Make sure you know your barbecue (some are hotter than others and have hot spots)!
Always use a meat thermometer to ensure the burgers reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. There's nothing worse than an under-cooked burger!
Check them after about 7 minutes and make sure the edges are starting to brown slightly before you flip them.
When the burgers are cooked through, remove them from the grill and let them rest for 3-5 minutes before serving. Resting helps create a juicy interior and it also helps the burgers stay together.
While the burgers are resting, throw together the Sriracha mayo by stirring together the mayonnaise, Sriracha and lime juice in a small bowl. This can also be prepared in advance if you wish. We often have a small container of this in our fridge because it's so delicious on sandwiches, wraps, sushi, etc.
These burgers are best served on a whole grain bun slathered in the Sriracha mayo, with a nice thick slice of tomato and some fresh spinach!
I hope you enjoy this one! Have fun grilling!