Food of the Week: turkey burgers

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABurgers get a bad rap, although few people seem inclined to give them up.  The list of burger criticism includes:

  • processed
  • high fat
  • high sodium
  • high calorie
  • unhealthy
  • cheap fast food sold by big corporations

On the plus side:

  • they taste good
  • they’re really convenient

So far, taste and convenience win.  We love burgers.  But what about the nutritional criticism?  Depending on what you use to make your burger, and what you put on them, they can be high sodium or high fat or high calorie.  But none of that is necessary.  Burgers can be delicious and also lower in calories, fat and salt.

Take turkey burgers.  Most grocery stores carry ground turkey these days, so making turkey burgers is just as easy as beef burgers.  If you can buy ground white meat turkey, you save on calories and fat.

When cooking a turkey burger, you want to be sure to cook it through, since poultry should only be eaten thoroughly cooked (actually the same goes for ground beef).  Before cooking, season the turkey with chopped scallions or onions, minced sweet or hot peppers and herbs or spices of your choice.  Dress the burgers up with sliced avocado, sprouts, sliced tomato, roasted red peppers, sautéed mushrooms, grilled onions, salsa or pickles, mustard and ketchup.

If you’re going for a healthy meal, serve your turkey burger with vegetables: tossed green salad, cabbage and carrot slaw, raw vegetables, fruit salad, sautéed greens or roasted broccoli or brussel sprouts.


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