How to Make Greek Style Turkey Burgers with Tzatziki Sauce
This week my oldest daughter Nell and I were on our own. My wife and youngest daughter were heading to Salt Lake City before heading up to Wyoming for a wedding. Nell and I dined out a couple of times but she said she wanted to make some Greek style turkey burgers with fresh corn and caprese salad.
Oh yeah, she wanted tzatziki sauce to serve with turkey burgers. She must of been looking through a cooking magazine for this menu.
Tzatziki sauce is Greek style yogurt sauce made with cucumber, garlic, mint leaves and a few other ingredients depending on who's make it.
Sounded like a great summer meal so I went to Whole Foods to pick up some ingredients. Thinking about what would be good in a turkey burger, I picked up some ground turkey and feta cheese. Although I've prepared tzatziki sauce for lamb burgers in the past, I decided to pick up a commercial product to save a few steps.
I already had garlic and shallot at home plus a flower bed full of mint, I was ready to make my own Greek style turkey burgers. I'm sure there are lot's of other ingredients you can add to your turkey burgers to make them more Greek style and I would love to hear your ideas in the comment section below.
While at Whole Foods, I noticed they sold both light meat and dark meat ground turkey. I opted for the light meat ground turkey thinking my daughter would prefer it, but next time I'll give the dark meat a go.
Because I like dark meat turkey more and think it is more moist and flavorful than white meat turkey. On Thanksgiving, there is always a rush for the leg and thigh meat I de-bone and stuff. No matter how perfectly you roast a turkey, the white meat always seems a little drier than the dark thigh meat.
Now imagine grilling ground white turkey over a very hot grill. You have to be extremely careful not to over cook it or you'll end up with a hockey puck. Hint - don't walk away from the grill!
Corn on the Cob
Fresh Corn is just starting to get real good here in the Philadelphia region. I don't think it's coming in from New Jersey yet, the best corn ever, but it is still very good.
Here are some of my posts on buying and cooking corn on the cob:
- How to Buy & Cook Corn on the Cob
- Cooking Corn on the Cob
- How to Grill Corn on the Cob
- Grilled Corn On the Cob with Parmesan Butter
When tomatoes are in season, especial Beef Steak tomatoes from New Jersey or right from our garden, we are eating Caprese salad made with tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, basil, extra virgin olive oil, good balsamic vinegar and a little salt & pepper.
I'm guessing during this time we have some version of it 3 or 4 times per week. Here are a few of my favorite ways to prepare it.
- Insalata Caprese Recipe
- Caprese and Panzanella Salads Combined
- Tomato, Mozzarella and Basil Recipe
- Grilled Peach Insalata Caprese Style Recipe
- Tomato, Mozzarella and Green Bean Salad
Although serving these turkey burgers on hamburger buns would be perfect, I've been trying to keep my bread consumption down so I opted not to buy them for this meal. My 19 year old daughter was perfectly fine with that decision.
RG's Cooking Tips
- You can make the turkey burgers a head of time and let them sit in the refrigerator if you like. I made them right before grilling so I started my gas grill about 10 minutes before starting to grill so the grates would heat up.
- The best tip I can give you is not to overwork the turkey. Using your hands, gently combine all the ingredients being careful not to over mix.
- These are not beef burgers so I would suggest you don't eat them bloody rare like some people like there beef but also be careful not to let them over cook until they are inedible. The exact times will depend on the temperature of your grill and the thickness of the turkey burger.
Greek Style Turkey Burgers Recipe
Making the Turkey Burgers
- I put the ground turkey into a stainless steel mixing bowl, added the shallot, garlic, mint, Feta cheese and seasoned with salt & pepper.
- When all the ingredients seem to be well combined, make four equal sized burgers with your hands and set aside until ready to grill.
- When the grill is medium hot, coat the grates with some olive or vegetable oil to help prevent the burgers from sticking. I like to use spray oil from a can, but you can use olive oil and a paper towel too.
- Add the turkey burgers and grill for 4 - 5 minutes until nice grill marks form on the one side of the burger. Flip and continue cooking for 3 - 5 more minutes until the burgers are cooked to your liking.
- I like to use my finger to determine doneness but recognize this is totally unscientific but works for me but not for everyone. I suggest you use an instant thermometer to reach an internal temperature of about 160°F but most home grillers don't feel the necessity of using one when grilling a burger. I can understand that.
- Remember to let the burger rest for a few minutes after removing from grill and before serving. During resting time, the burgers will continue to cook off heat and the internal temperature should rise to about 165°F.
- Just like a beef hamburger, you want to let the juices inside the burger to redistribute throughout the meat.