So I had the most delicious Turkey Burger at True Food Kitchen in Miami recently. I would not normally describe Turkey burgers as delicious, as they tend to be tasteless and dried out. But, calorie-wise, turkey burgers offer big savings over the beef versions. When comparing the frozen Bubba Burgers (410 calories) to Trader Joe’s Turkey Burgers (180 calories), the turkey burger is the clear winner.
Since I really enjoyed the True Food Kitchen Turkey Burger, I set about to deconstruct how they amped up the flavor in what is usually a boring and bland burger. Their secret? Every component in this turkey burger brings a big punch of flavor! Plus, of course, every ingredient should be at it’s freshest, peak-of-the-season flavor. (I’m looking at you, tomatoes!)
For my experiment, I used Trader Joe’s Turkey Burger, since it was easiest. It’s basically made of ground turkey & salt, so no flavor boost there. For the next major component, I turned to the bun. I feel a burger needs a bun and a piece of lettuce (aka a lettuce wrap) doesn’t cut it for me. Still, the typical, fluffy, white bread buns don’t add much flavor to the burger, but they do add calories; worst of all, the burger tends to get lost in the equation.
Solution? True Food uses a smaller Flax Seed bun for its Turkey Burgers. This adds flavor, making the burger the star. Unfortunately, when I went in search of something similar, there were no Flaxseed buns at the grocery store, so I settled for a Keto Bun. It was 100 calories, vs. 140 for a Whole Wheat Bun. In the future, I’d probably go for the Whole Wheat Bun. I’m not afraid of gluten!
The cheese used for this True Food’s Turkey Burger is Smoked Gouda, which, for 70 calories, packs a LOT of flavor. If you’re not a fan of that cheese, you could try another strong cheese- such as Blue or Swiss- to amp up the flavor. This also gave me an idea- why don’t they make blue cheese in slices? It would make it easier to melt.
The vegetables used to top this burger should be of the freshest quality. True Food Kitchen used butter lettuce, but I used Romaine because that was what I had. I did make a special trip to buy a ripe, beefsteak tomato. A really good, ripe tomato makes all the difference in the taste of a sandwich. Arugula or spinach would also be good as lettuce options to top this burger.
Lastly, are the condiments – smashed avocado and Jalapeno remoulade- True Food Kitchen uses to spread on their Flaxseed buns. If you don’t have a ripe avocado, store-bought guacamole would be a great substitute. I made the remoulade from scratch, but it was a lot of ingredients, so would recommend mixing light mayo (if you like mayo), with some spicy mustard and chopped jalapenos instead. Or use ketchup, if that’s your jam.
I made the Turkey Burger following these exact ingredients, the only thing I added were some pickled cucumbers for crunch. Carmelized onions or sauteed mushrooms would also be delicious. Feel free to personalize this Turkey Burger according to your own personal tastes, so you can make your own Amazing Turkey Burger.
Amazing Turkey BurgerCourse: Sandwich/BurgerCuisine: American/HealthyDifficulty: Easy
1 Trader Joe’s Turkey Patty
1 slice Smoked Gouda Cheese
1 slice Heirloom Tomato
1 Tablespoon Light Mayo
1 teaspoon dijon
1 Tablespoon chopped pickled jalapenos
1 Hamburger Bun, preferably Whole Wheat
Leaf of Romaine Lettuce
2 Tablespoons smashed avocado or Guacamole
- Season frozen turkey patty with some Worcestershire sauce and ground pepper. Set aside. Pre-heat skillet (preferably cast iron) to medium heat.
- Take a fourth of a ripe avocado and smash it until it’s chunky.
- Mix mayo with mustard and jalapenos. Set aside.
- Lightly toast bun. Spread avocado on one side, mayo mixture on the other.
- Slice tomato into thin slices (1 or 2) and get bun size lettuce leaf ready.
- Add 1 tablespoon grapeseed or olive oil to skillet. Place turkey patty into pre-heated skillet. Cook 7 minutes on one side. Flip and cook 6 minutes on the other side.
- Place slice of cheese on turkey and cook, covered, one more minute or until cheese melts.
- Assemble your turkey burger, placing burger on bun and topping with lettuce and tomato.
- True Food Kitchen serves this with a Kale salad. I would serve it with baked sweet potato wedges.
- If you don’t like spicy food, omit the jalapenos.
*I experimented with a homemade turkey burger with chopped scallions and seasonings, but it didn’t really make a big difference in taste, so I would just stick to pre-made patties. And, full disclosure, even though this Turkey Burger was darned good, it wasn’t as good as True Food Kitchen! They must sprinkle some magic pixie dust in that thing.
Up Next: Girl’s Weekend in the Keys