Grill | Thai Turkey Burgers with Pineapple Chili Relish and Garlic Lime Mayonnaise

Thai Turkey Burgers with Pineapple Chili Relish and Garlic Lime Mayo

Whenever I try to be virtuous and order a turkey burger, regret almost always ensues! It arrives in any combination of tough, dry and flavorless, making me wish I’d gone for the juicy beef version that my tablemates ordered. But turkey burgers don’t have to suffer a bland and tasteless fate – you just have to take a little time to build flavor before it hits the grill. The burgers in this recipe are tender and juicy, and I’ve packed them with Thai flavor. Pineapple Chili Relish lends sweet, spicy acidity while Lime and Garlic Mayonnaise adds a deliciously cool creaminess. This is one turkey burger you won’t regret.

Thai Turkey Burgers with Pineapple Chili Relish and Garlic Lime Mayonnaise

serves 4

for the Thai Turkey Burgers:

  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced lemongrass
  • 2 scallions, minced
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil + more for oiling
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground turkey (preferably dark meat)
  • Pineapple Chili Relish (recipe below)
  • Garlic Lime Mayonnaise (recipe below)
  • lettuce leaves
  • 4 burger buns or kaiser rolls, toasted

Place all ingredients except ground turkey in a large bowl and whisk. Add ground turkey to bowl and mix gently with your hands or two forks until thoroughly combined. Form into four equal 3/4-inch thick patties and place on a lightly-oiled platter or large plate. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to firm up and allow flavors to meld.

Preheat grill to medium-high. Brush burgers with canola oil and grill until cooked through, about 4-5 minutes on each side. Place burgers on buns spread with Garlic Lime Mayonnaise and top with Pineapple Chili Relish and lettuce.


for the Pineapple Chili Relish:

  • 1 1/2 cups finely diced pineapple
  • 1/2 to 1 or 2 fresh red chilis (such as Fresno, Thai bird, or Serrano), seeds and ribs removed, finely diced (chilis can vary dramatically in heat level. If you like things on the mild side, start with half a chili, have a taste, then add more if desired)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Place all ingredients in a medium bowl and stir to combine.


for the Garlic Lime Mayonnaise:

  • 1/2 cup best quality mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 clove garlic, finely minced
  • small pinch kosher salt

Place all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine.

Burger patties, relish and mayonnaise may be made a day in advance. Refrigerate until ready to use.

click here for a printer friendly PDF version of this recipe

Pineapple Chili Relish

Thai Turkey Burgers

Garlic Lime Mayo

Pineapple Chili Relish for Thai Turkey Burgers


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