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For a twist on a classic burger – try making Hawaiian Turkey Burgers

Justin Fox Burks
Credit Justin Fox Burks

These burgers are the perfect summertime fare. Plumped up with flavorful ingredients like red bell peppers, mustard, and mango chutney, they are grill-worthy burgers sure to become a favorite.

And don’t forget the finishing touch when you pull them off the grill! Sweet teriyaki sauce and grilled pineapple lend a taste of the tropics to this tasty turkey burger.

Turkey burgers need binders such as egg and breadcrumbs to help them hold their shape when cooking. I recommended using Panko breadcrumbs instead of regular breadcrumbs because they impart a lighter and more airy texture to the burger.

When mixing the burger ingredients, be sure not to overwork or compact the meat too much.  The lighter the touch, the juicer and less dense the burger will be. 

In addition to being a tasty alternative for traditional burgers, ground turkey is lower in fat than ground beef.  Lower fat content is definitely a bonus for those that are looking for healthier alternatives for the dinner table. But when purchasing your ground turkey, don’t opt for the lowest fat percentage available. Since turkey is so lean, be sure to use ground turkey that is at least 7 percent fat. Using anything leaner will result in dry burgers.

To get a head start on dinner, turkey burgers can be formed, tightly wrapped, and refrigerated for up to 24 hours in advance.

By the way, this burger is also great without the bun if you’re watching your carbs. Just serve it on a bed of lettuce and drizzle the teriyaki sauce on top.

This is Jennifer Chandler with The Weekly Dish. Bon Appetit!

Hawaiian Turkey Burgers

  • 1 pound ground turkey (7% fat)
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup finely diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions (about 2 scallions)
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Major Grey’s mango chutney
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil, for the grates
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 4 slices pineapple
  • 1/2 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 4 hamburger buns, split


In a large mixing bowl combine the ground turkey, breadcrumbs, red bell pepper, scallions, Dijon mustard, and chutney. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Gently mix together, by hand or with a fork, until well combined. Divide the meat into 4 equal portions. Being careful not to overwork or compact the meat too much, pat each portion into a 3/4-inch thick patty.

Preheat a clean grill to medium-high with the lid closed for 8 to 10 minutes. Lightly brush the grates with oil.

Place the burgers on the grill. Close the lid and cook, turning once, until cooked through and no longer pink in the middle, about 6 to 8 minutes per side. Lightly brush the pineapple slices with canola oil and grill until golden brown on both sides about 2 to 3 minutes per side. About 1 minute before the burgers are done, place the buns, cut-side down, on the grill and cook until lightly toasted.

To serve, place each burger inside a bun and garnish with the teryaki sauce and a slice of pineapple.

Serves 4.

Printed with permission from Simply Grilling by Jennifer Chandler.

Copyright 2020 WKNO

Jennifer Chandler graduated at the top of her class from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. She is a full-time mom to two daughters in Memphis, Tennessee, and is a freelance food writer, restaurant consultant, and author of four cookbooks The Southern Pantry Cookbook, Simply Salads, Simply Suppers, and Simply Grilling.