These were a huge hit – lots of flavor and wonderfully cheesy. Pretty close to the inspirational recipe (Queso Turkey Burger) with just a couple tweaks.
Feeding five BIG eaters so doubled the recipe – 2 lbs ground turkey, 1c gluten-free panko, 3 cloves minced garlic, 1/2c minced red onion, 2 eggs, 1/2c chopped fresh cilantro
2 tsp ground cumin, ground coriander, garlic powder – 1 tsp chili powder and Achiote (ground Annatto) – freshly ground black pepper.
Combine thoroughly and make eight burgers
The inspirational recipe recommended covering and chilling but the burgers felt fairly firm so we went ahead and cooked them – oh, and everyone was hungry!
Side dish: Black Bean Mexicali Salad – Also a hit.
In 1 Tbsp olive oil, over medium-high heat, cook the burgers to get a nice sear on both sides, approximately 4 minutes on each side until they reach 165-degrees internal temperature. Tip: lift up a burger and insert your insta-read thermometer from the side for the most accurate temp.
Top each burger with two slices of pepper jack cheese. Tip, pour a little water in the pan (1/4c or less) and cover – the water won’t damage your seared burgers but the steam will melt the cheese without overcooking the burgers.
While the pepper jack cheese is melting, heat up some queso blanco (I used Tostitos Queso Blanco) in a bowl for even more cheesy goodness.
Lightly butter and toast traditional hamburger buns, top the burgers with red onion slices and a drizzle of the heated queso. Serve with the Black Bean Mexicali salad on the side.
Notes: The inspirational recipe recommended topping the burgers with fresh cilantro and some fresh jalapeño, both of which I had but I completely forgot (I am blaming age! That’s my story and I’m sticking with it). Also, my Heart suggested that a more substantial bun might be better – like a kaiser roll. Also, we used ground turkey but this recipe would work with ground chicken or ground beef with no problem.