Let Turkey Burgers Take Over Your Holiday Meal This Year

Turkey burgers are an ingenious addition to any Thanksgiving menu, as they blend tradition with a modern twist. Thanksgiving Day has become synonymous with turkey, a mighty, meaty bird that has graced American dining tables on the fourth Thursday in November for generations. The iconic roasted platter symbolizes bounty, gratitude, and unity, making it the quintessential centerpiece of the feast for most families that celebrate. However, introducing turkey burgers as part of your holiday spread offers a fresh, delightful alternative, and provides a new way to savor the beloved dish.

To create a batch of delectable Thanksgiving turkey burgers, you needn't reinvent the wheel, either. You'll just need ground turkey meat, which is "flexible and forgiving," according to Mashed recipe developer Maren Epstein. Or, simply finely chop or shred the meat from your Thanksgiving focal point, season it to your liking, and form it into patties with the help of some eggs (which act as an emulsifier), plus a dash of Worcestershire sauce, salt, sautéed onion, minced garlic, and butter or oil. Spice options abound, but a blend of parsley, sage, thyme, oregano, ground black pepper, onion powder, and garlic add a refreshing, aromatic zing. Grill, pan-fry, or bake the turkey patties until they are golden brown and cooked through and they're ready to be served.

Turkey burger toppings can honor holiday flavors

While you can absolutely opt for the basics (e.g., ketchup, mustard, lettuce, tomato, etc.) as toppings for a Thanksgiving turkey burger, you can also try to honor the flavors of the season. For instance, a smear of creamy mashed potatoes on top of the patty provides a silky quality that complements the poultry's earthy notes. A dollop of cranberry sauce adds a bright, juicy tang, while a slice of melted cheese and a smattering of crispy fried onions offer a fun texture. The buns also deserve their own special consideration. Lightly toasted whole grain, pretzel, or potato buns harmonize well with the turkey's hearty taste. Feel free to get creative, too! Love stuffing? Pile it on! Can't get enough of Mom's mac 'n cheese casserole? Go for it! Heck, it's Thanksgiving — anything goes.

Turkey burgers offer practical advantages, too. For starters, they're quick to prepare and ideal for a lighter handheld option on a day notorious for overindulgence — or in the days following the holiday. They're *chef's kiss* when it comes to leftovers too, which are, of course, the best part of the long weekend. The ease of customization allows each guest to tailor their burger to their preferences, granting a sense of personalization in a communal meal.

Introducing turkey burgers to your Thanksgiving table is a modern take on a classic tradition, fostering culinary creativity while paying homage to the enduring appeal of the holiday bird. They have the power to transform a legendary nosh into something even more special, echoing the spirit of the day.