Hold the ketchup, hold everything: Turkey Feta Burgers are just plain good

by Marion on June 7, 2017

Made with ground turkey, feta and dried herbs, these pan-cooked burgers are so flavorful, they don’t need condiments. Recipe below.

Turkey Feta Burgers

I came up with this recipe a few weeks ago in the middle of a complicated family project that had me working very long hours with not much time to do things like eat. It was exhausting. Then one day I was in the grocery store and saw some ground turkey, of all things, and thought animal protein, and then it had somehow leaped into my cart and the must eat animal protein trance was falling over me and then I was home, rummaging around in the fridge, hunting for saute pans in a frenzy, and next thing I knew, I was putting these burgers on plates, and thinking how handsome they looked and, in the moments before they vanished, how good they smelled. The whole thing was amazing.

Now I’ve made them reappear for you. If you’re always looking for new, easy weeknight recipes, this one hits the trifecta. It’s simple—you can put it together in a few minutes when you get home from work; it’s tasty—the little bit of feta livens everything up; and thanks to the turkey and the feta, it’s healthy. And the patties reheat nicely a day or two later—I recently cooked up a big batch, and we were delighted to find that, two days later, the leftovers were still delicious.

Serve these with your favorite burger bun or roll. We’ve tried onion Kaiser rolls, potato rolls and whole grain buns. This time, we went with classic white bread buns with a sesame seed topping, lightly toasted. They’re all good.

In my opinion, you really don’t need a condiment with this—the little bit of feta is enough. But if you really want to slather on something, I recommend mayonnaise. The slight tanginess and mildness would suit just fine. And a thin-sliced tomato or mild pickle also suits this dish. To accompany, we recommend sides that help take care of your daily five. We made a big green salad and sliced up a beautiful fragrant cantaloupe. And to drink? Honestly, I had a big glass of iced water. Dude, it’s Tuesday.

Turkey Feta Burgers
Serves 4

1-1/4 lb. lean ground turkey
3 or 4 tablespoons feta, crumbled
6 or 7 Ritz- style crackers crushed fine (see Kitchen Notes)
1 teaspoon dried rosemary or herbes de Provence
2 tablespoons olive oil for the pan
salt and freshly ground black pepper

burger buns—your favorite kind
toppings (optional)

Put the turkey in a mixing bowl and, with your hands, thoroughly mix all the ingredients together until everything is uniform. Divide into four patties. Heat the oil in a skillet to medium and sauté the patties on each side. Cook until they reach an internal temperature of 165ºF, about 5 minutes per side.

Put them on buns and let people take care of the toppings themselves. Enjoy.

Kitchen Notes

Crackers. First, yes, you need the crackers; they help bind the burgers together. I used Trader Joe’s Golden Rounds, which is what was in the house. The closest thing to this is Ritz crackers, but plain Saltines or other softish crackers would also work just fine. I would NOT opt for really crisp or hard crackers—Triscuits, Ryvita or those hard thin grim whole grain wafers would be wrong wrong wrong.


{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

John/Kitchen Riffs June 7, 2017 at 8:23 am

Animal protein is good. :-) I’ve never made turkey burgers — really should. Like feta in salmon burgers, a lot, and I’ll bet it’s a nice addition here. Fun dish — thanks.

Anita June 7, 2017 at 6:22 pm

I, on the other hand, have made turkey burgers a number of times, but was always underwhelmed. And I need more crackers in the house to eat the jam that I always buy because it’s SO good, but then forget in the fridge until it grows penicillin.

Anita June 7, 2017 at 6:24 pm

Finishing the above post: Will buy crackers and will thaw one of the turkey patties in the freezer. And will have crackers and jam for dessert!

karin bugge June 7, 2017 at 8:42 pm

I can see that. My favorite burger is one with blue cheese, so this could work. Thanks.

Dani H June 7, 2017 at 10:51 pm

I love your addition of the feta, Marion. Thanks for another of your great recipes!

Marion June 8, 2017 at 8:47 pm

Thanks, everyone! Adding the feta is the thing that makes this interesting. Anita, I love crackers and jam. I don’t know why it isn’t more generally beloved.

Jo Kegstra June 10, 2017 at 8:27 am

Came to ground poultry the same way. Another good tip is to add one packet of unflavored gelatin to help with moisture issues.

Ronnie Ann August 13, 2017 at 1:49 pm

I was thinking about something simple and yummy to make for dinner, and remembered this post. Feta is one of my favorite enliveners. Can already (well almost) taste the juicy goodness. Thanks, Marion!

Marion August 14, 2017 at 8:31 pm

Thanks Ronnie! I really like this one!

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