Pan-seared turkey burgers with pepper jack, red onion-jalapeno relish and avocado


I woke up this morning to sore shoulders, abs and pecs. For the past month, Jason and I have been doing the Insanity 60-day challenge, which consists of intense (and insane) cardio interval circuit training. The first time I did it I seriously thought I was going to die; I had never breathed so hard in my life. Now, it’s easier to withstand, though not by much, we still huff and puff our way through the 60-minute DVD with Shaun T, the instructor, motivating us to “dig deeper” with every sprint, high jump, and push-up. All I have to say is, I better be ripped come summer time.

With exercise comes healthier eating and it’s something I’ve tried to incorporate into our habits more this past year. I started making these turkey burgers for my clients a while ago and have recently begun adding it to our arsenal of vittles at home as well. For one, they’re super delicious and juicy; you won’t even miss the fact that it’s made out of lean turkey instead of beef. And for two, these patties are ridiculously easy to prepare. Just grab  your ingredients, dump them into a food processor, press the button and voila, you have dinner.



What really makes this burger shine is the red onion-jalapeño relish and it would be a sacrilege not to include it. The sweet bite of the red onions is punctuated by the tang of the lime juice and the warm heat of the jalapeño and it really brightens up the whole dish. Give it a try and I promise you you won’t regret it.


Pan-seared turkey burgers with pepper jack, red onion-jalapeño relish and avocado

Makes 4 juicy 1/4 lb. burgers


1 pound good ground turkey

1/3 cup curly parsley

3/4 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4/ teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon canola oil to fry burgers

4 burger buns of your choice; I used 7-grain

1 tablespoon regular or herby compound butter to butter and toast your buns

Red onion-jalapeño relish

1/2 avocado, sliced thin

Mayonnaise, preferably homemade

4 slices pepper jack cheese


Put the ground turkey, curly parsley, chili powder, paprika, salt, and pepper into a food processor and mix until it comes together, just a few seconds. Alternatively, use your hands and mix together very well.

Using your hands, form them into 4 patties. Burgers tend to puff up during cooking so what I like to do is make the center thinner than the outside so that when it cooks up, it all ends up being the same size without that huge bump in the middle. Place them onto a plate, cover with plastic, and stash in the fridge for about 30 minutes to let the flavors marry and give the patties a chance to firm up a bit.

While this happens, clean up and get your condiments ready. On a large frying pan set over medium-high heat, toss in the butter and place your burger buns cut-side down to toast for about a minute. Fetch them out as soon as they start to get golden brown on the inside.

Pour the canola oil on the frying pan and grab your turkey patties from the fridge. Put them on the pan to fry, about 4 minutes each side, until deliciously charred and caramelized. Right before you take them off the heat, put the slices of pepper jack cheese over each patty and allow to melt lustily, about 30 seconds.

Ready your troops. Assemble the burgers by: slathering the bottom and tops of each burger bun with mayonnaise, then place the patty on the bun, top with sliced avocado, then a generous handful of red onion-jalapeño relish. Top with the bun and plate. Serve with cinnamon and chile-dusted sweet potato fries (recipe coming soon!) and call it a day.


xo, steph

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  • IslandvittlesJanuary 8, 2012 - 11:00 am

    I love a girl who knows how to top a burger!  The red onions make it so pretty.  How about we do a house/blog swap?  We both leave our fridges full, then trade houses for a week and see what we come up with.  Wait — that’s a good idea.  theresaReplyCancel

    • AnonymousJanuary 8, 2012 - 11:07 am

      That sounds like a fabulous idea! Let’s make it happen. LOL. ReplyCancel

  • sippitysupJanuary 8, 2012 - 11:35 am

    I can think of a million “insane” ways to use that relish. Good luck on getting ripped! GREGReplyCancel

  • Kristi RimkusJanuary 8, 2012 - 12:23 pm

    I’m impressed! I couldn’t huff and puff much past 30 minutes! Love this turkey burger. I could probably make 60 minutes if I knew I could eat this afterwards.ReplyCancel

  • MichelleJanuary 8, 2012 - 6:14 pm

    That relish sounds incredible!ReplyCancel

  • betiJanuary 8, 2012 - 10:01 pm

    now that’s a proper turkey burgerReplyCancel

  • […] am been spending a few looney minutes with Stephanie.  One recipe that really screams at me is her pan seared turkey burgers.  At first it was the bun, that got my belly grumbling.  Then it was the seasoned ground turkey […]ReplyCancel

  • JessicaMay 29, 2012 - 8:03 pm

    I just made the burgers with the jalapeno onion relish – WOW. I used the pepperjack, mayo, and avocado as well (on a whole grain bun), and this is one of the best turkey burgers I’ve ever had. My husband took a bite and looked at me and said, “These. Are. Good. Really good.” There are so many amazing flavors going on in there! Fantastic recipe, thank you so much. And I made the sweet potato fries (sans butter) as well – that’s a whole ‘nother situation. The spice blend on those fries is ridonk – I want to put it on everything. You should bottle it and sell it – I’m serious. I’m trying to think of what else I could put it on – any suggestions?ReplyCancel

    • StephanieMay 30, 2012 - 8:07 am

      Hey Jessica, my goodness I’m so happy that you guys enjoyed the burgers! My hubby loves them as well! 🙂 I do a variation of the spice blend for the fries to add to panko breadcrumbs for chicken and flour coating for fish. Both are really good. Hope that’s helpful but I know you can tweak it to fit whatever you’re making. Thanks again for the warm enthusiasm!ReplyCancel

  • […] em casa e seguido uma dieta limpa e muito saborosa com alguns ajustes, resolvi traduzir uma de suas receitas para o exército espartano; É uma receita simples, com ingredientes relativamente fáceis de […]ReplyCancel

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