Even though my Italian pesto turkey burgers are actually healthy, you'd hardly even notice. These quarter pounders offer a lighter alternative to the traditional beef patty, but truly pack a punch to your appetite. And even though they are lean, they are so juicy and flavorful.
To make this recipe even quicker and easier, you can use bottled pesto or do what I do ~ Make a batch of pesto without adding the cheese and freeze a portion of it in an ice cube tray. When the pesto is frozen, store it in a plastic freezer bag. When you're ready to use it, just take out a couple of cubes, let them defrost and mix in some grated parmigiano cheese. It also works great for quick pasta dishes, but in this case, add a little pasta water in addition to the cheese, to the pesto before mixing in the pasta. Give it a try!
Italian Pesto Turkey Burgers
1 pound lean ground turkey (I used dark meat, which is about 93% lean)
2 1/2 tablespoons basil pesto, plus more for topping on bun
1 garlic clove, minced
1 egg white, beaten
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Regiano cheese, or parmesan in a pinch
1/4 cup bread crumbs, (I used Italian flavored panko breadcrumbs)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
4 light hamburger buns, toasted lightly on grill
Preheat grill on medium-high heat. (I used a stove top grill and heated it over medium heat)
- Mix together pesto, egg white, garlic, parmigiano cheese, salt, pepper and breadcrumbs in a medium bowl. Add the ground turkey and mix until evenly blended. (Do not over work the meat or it will be tough when cooked)
- Form into 4 equal size patties.
- Grill pesto burgers for about 4-5 minutes per side or until no longer pink in the center. 180 degrees on an instant read thermometer. (Mine were cooked in about 8 minutes total.)
- Place each burger atop a toasted bun, top with a slice of fresh tomato and spread additional pesto on the bun tops.