Good turkey burgers are hard to come by, and harder to cook. More often than not, they are dry, flavorless, and just kinda mehh. These turkey zucchini burgers, inspired by one of my favorite recipes from one of my favorite cookbooks, Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi, are anything but.
These burgers are filled with herbs and spices to make them seem light and fresh, which is a strange thing to say about a turkey burger. I’ve gone off script with the addition of lemon, because I believe that it makes everything better, and only added herbs that I had on hand.
The beauty of this recipe is that no matter what herb/spice combo you use (although I highly recommend this one), the cooking technique results in a juicy, perfectly cooked turkey burg every single time.
Of note: the original recipe calls for these burgers to be served with a sour creamy sumac sauce. Hmmm… here at Fillmore Kitchen, we have a strong no white sauce policy due to personal aversion (it’s a real thing). As such, I highly recommend serving with cilantro vinaigrette or tahini, which is not actually white and therefore fair game.
Turkey Zucchini Burgers
Slightly adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi's Turkey & Zucchini Burgers
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1-2 zucchini, grated yields about 2 cups
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp mint, chopped
- 2 tbsp cilantro, chopped plus more for garnish
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp chili flakes
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3-6 tbsp oil of choice for searing (I used olive oil, but vegetable or sunflower oil works well)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Combine all ingredients (except the searing oil) to make the burger mixture. Using clean, wet hands, mix well to combine. Be careful not to over-mix, resulting in dense burgers. Shape into ~8 burgers.
Heat a large cast iron or oven-safe pan. Add oil and heat over medium temperature.
Add the burgers to the pan, and sear until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side.
If you don't have an oven-safe pan, transfer to a baking sheet after searing.
Transfer the pan to the oven and cook for 5-7 minutes, or until just cooked through, being careful not to overcook.
Serve with cilantro vinaigrette or tahini sauce.