Healthy, Protein Packed Turkey Burgers

Is this title a bit shocking?

I know I have a tendency to post recipes that fall slightly more on the decadent side…like Giant Oreo Cakes and Rice Krispie Treats loaded with browned butter, however, I feel compelled to share this super healthy recipe today!

For the longest time (and I mean YEARS) I’ve eaten the same boring lunch…day in and day out. A spinach salad with olive oil, vinegar and some type of protein. It’s always been kind of, meh. Lately though, I’ve found myself skipping lunch in favor of snacking throughout the day because I’ve been so sick of this salad. Of course, that’s not the smartest thing either because I’ll tell you right now I’m totally eating chocolate instead not snacking on anything as virtuous as spinach…or anything that remotely resembles salad. 

So the other week while grocery shopping I picked up a package of 99% lean ground turkey breast and thought, “what if I mix all my standard salad ingredients into this turkey and made loaded turkey burgers for lunch?”. I mean, it’s really just spinach and olive oil, right? How bad can that be? No worse than that awful, cold, boring salad…anything was better than that so I figured it was worth the shot.

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The first time I made these I chopped up a big container of raw spinach, tossed it with garlic and olive oil and mashed it into my turkey meat. It was really good, but I wanted to try it a few different ways before I declared my favorite version. This week I sautéed the spinach in olive oil first, then mixed the turkey meat into that and added some egg whites for extra moisture (I know, I’m shkeeving the word too, but come onnnnnn, even the synonyms for “moist” are offensive!) and protein. This version is sooo juicy and satisfying that it’s hard to believe that the calories and nutritional value are the same as that pathetic little salad I used to scarf down. 

These burgers are so good and so surprisingly satisfying! They’re incredibly flavorful and delicious hot or cold which is great if you typically eat your lunch while on the go, like I always do! I’ve eaten these between a soft, squishy whole wheat bun with a little bit of mustard, rolled up in a whole wheat tortilla, then pressed like a panini-wrap and straight up plain, wrapped up cold in a square of tin foil straight out of my cooler while driving to work.

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The subtle olive oil flavor is the star of the show and the vibrant green spinach flowing throughout reminds you that you’re fueling your body both deliciously and healthfully! 

Hope you give these a try and enjoy them as much as I do! They make a great mid day meal, dinner and even a post work out snack! 

Enjoy!

 

Healthy, Protein Packed Turkey Burgers

Serves 5

Ingredients:

– 1.5 lbs ground turkey meat (98-99% lean breast meat)

– 5 cups spinach 

– 1 or 2 (depending on taste) cloves of garlic, minced fine

– 1/4 cup egg whites (or the white of one large egg)

– 4 TBSP Olive Oil 

– 1/2 TBSP Sambal Olek (optional, but I love the added heat)

– Salt & Pepper, to taste

 

Directions:

In a large sautee pan, over low to medium heat, heat up the olive oil and garlic. Stir while it cooks until the garlic becomes fragrant (about 3-4 minutes). Add in all the spinach and give it a quick stir to make sure it is evenly coated with the garlic and oil. Stir as it cooks and the spinach wilts down, about 5-6 minutes. Once the spinach is completely wilted remove the heat and let it sit until it comes to room temperature (I usually pop it in the fridge for a bit). 

Place the room temperature spinach mix into a large bowl and add the egg whites, Sambal Olek, salt and pepper. Then, add in the turkey breast and mix by hand, careful not to overwork the meat. 

Using a kitchen scale, weigh each patty out to 5.5-6 ounces. This recipe makes 5 burgers. Place on a lined baking sheet prepared with non-stick cooking spray. Cook the burgers in a 400 degree oven for 8-10 minutes per side, or until a meat thermometer reads 165 degrees.

 

Eat immediately or store in the fridge for up to one week! 

Enjoy!

xoxo

 

 

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