Until you've smoked turkey burgers you haven't cooked them to their potential. Smoking gives ground turkey burgers a deep flavor & helps them stay moist. They are delicious and easy!
Everyone loves burgers! There isn't anything much better than taking a big bite out of a juicy burger. When my wife announces "burgers are for dinner" there is usually a mixed reaction from the kids...and me. First question, beef or turkey? When I hear burgers, I think of a big, medium-rare 8oz juicy grilled or smoked beef burgers. When I hear it is turkey, I think of a baked gray piece of dry turkey meat. My point is, people love burgers, but they want and expect flavor-packed meat. How do we achieve that with turkey?
As I get older, my doctor asks every year that I get blood work done to see all my stats. I am pretty healthy, but the older I get the more I realize I need to take better care of my body if I want it to take care of me. Trying to eat more healthily can sound like a drag. But finding ways to make it more enjoyable are the keys for me to stick with it. I decided to make a simple turkey burgers recipe but throw them in the smoker. After all, cooking via smoke makes everything better.
How to Make Smoked Turkey Burgers
Step One: To start, take your ground turkey place it in a large bowl season it. Salt and pepper are fine, I might also suggest some onion and garlic. Using dry ingredients is fine for this, the juice from the turkey will be absorbed by the seasoning and add more flavor to the burger. I have also just used my favorite steak rub and sprinkle about a tablespoon per pound of meat and just combine it through the lean ground turkey meat.
Step Two: Next, make the meat mixture into turkey burger patties. It really doesn't matter the size of turkey you make. Just make sure the patties will fit nicely with your buns (if having buns). Your average pattie will be about 6 oz, so a pound of ground turkey will make about three patties.
Expert Tip: Ground turkey can get a little sticky, so I recommend preheating your smoker and wiping the grates with a little cooking oil so that they don't stick too much.
Step Three: Once the smoker is preheated, set it to medium heat, about 250 F, and let the burgers cook for about an hour. We want the internal temperature to hit 160 F. Once the burgers are done, let them sit and rest for 5 minutes. You can use this time to toast your bun. Once done, go ahead and build your burger with your favorite toppings, spreads, dressing, and sauces. Enjoy!
Toppings & Variations
While the burgers are smoking, go ahead and pull out any cheese or topping that you want to add. Sometimes I grill some mushrooms or onions to slice and top my burger with. If you add "cooked toppings" and then add your cheese while in the smoker, the cheese will melt nicely and act almost like glue to hold your topping in place for when you finish building it.
- Smoked Onions - we love topping these with our homemade smoked onions. They add a lot of flavor to each bite.
- Lettuce, Tomato, Onion, Pickles - all the classics. Anytime we have burgers my kids want all of these on the table so they can choose their favorites.
- Cheese - we used provolone in these photos but we also will use cheddar, Monterey Jack, or pepper jack depending on our mood.
- Smoked Garlic - we generally puree some smoked garlic with a little mayo and use it as a spread for burgers. It is a great topping for smoked turkey burgers that way.
- Bacon - bacon is always a good choice. You can cook up some pork or turkey bacon to add even more flavor to these.
- Beef- sub in ground beef for the turkey. You can reduce the cooking time if you like your beef burgers rare or medium-rare.
- Buns - we served this on a sandwich thin type bun but you can use any roll you enjoy. Try these keto buns for a low-carb option.
What to Serve with Smoked Turkey Burgers
I love cold salads, whether it is potato salad, coleslaw, or just grilled veggies to accompany this smoked turkey burger. We also enjoy serving these with an easy quinoa salad.
- 2 lb ground turkey
- 1.5 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- Season ground turkey by gently mixing in the seasonings and forming it into 4 patties. Be careful not to overwork the meat.
- Preheat smoker to medium heat, about 250 F.
- Put the burgers in the smoker and cook until internal temperature reaches 160 F. About an hour.
- Let burgers rest for five minutes and then build your burger.