When shopping for ground turkey, be sure to ask the butcher or read labels for the fat to lean ratio. Choose an 85%-90% lean grind, dark meat if possible, for best flavor. Some dark ground turkey is higher in fat because turkey skin is ground into the meat. Be sure to look for a lean grind, or have the butcher grind some for you. To grind your own, use a manual meat grinder or a standing mixer with a grinding attachment.

Serves 4


  • 1¼ pounds lean ground turkey
  • 2 tablespoons fresh finely chopped parsley
  • 2 tablespoons fresh finely chopped chives
  • 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1½ tablespoons coarse or whole grain Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons bread crumbs (whole wheat panko or gluten-free)
  • 23 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 whole wheat or gluten-free hamburger buns
  • 4 large tomato slices
  • 4 large leaves dark green lettuce
  • Horseradish sauce and Dijon to dress buns (optional)


  1. Place turkey through garlic into a medium bowl. Mix gently with your hands until thoroughly combined. (Work with very clean hands or wear disposable food preparation gloves.)
  2. Divide turkey mixture into 4 equal portions. Roll into balls, and then flatten into burger patties. Patties can be refrigerated at this point for a few hours or grilled right away.
  3. Cook burgers in a nonstick grill or fry pan or on an outdoor grill. Place patties on the grill, and cook until one side has golden grill marks and feels firm, about 79 minutes.  Flip burgers and cover with a lid or a small aluminum pan, and cook until burgers are firm and reach an internal temperature of 160°-165°. Do not overcook or press on burgers while they are cooking; you want juicy burgers.
  4. Spread the buns with a little horseradish sauce and/or Dijon mustard, top with lettuce and tomatoes. Add burgers. For a change, try tucking burgers into whole wheat pita bread.


Tip: Homemade bread crumbs taste the best and are easy to make. Cut crusts from a few slices of bread (leftover bread is perfect, and gluten-free bread works just as well). Tear remaining bread into pieces, then pulse in a food processor until fine. Spread bread crumbs on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake at 350° for a few minutes until dry and toasted. Cool before using. Crumbs will keep several months refrigerated or frozen.