Blue Cheese (or Feta) Turkey Burgers

By Ann Fulton

Blue Cheese Turkey Burgers-3 simple ingredients make THE BEST turkey burgers ever...tender, flavorful and not the least bit dry. Easy to cook on the grill or stovetop.
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Three simple ingredients make THE BEST turkey burgers. They’re tender, flavorful, and not the least bit dry, whether cooked on the grill or stovetop. The easy recipe quickly became a regular at our house, and I’m guessing it will become a favorite in your home too!


After reviewing an impressive new cookbook authored by teen chefs (and twins!) Lyla and Emily Allen, I shared a recipe the girls have made and enjoyed countless times over the years-PB&J Breakfast Bars. It seemed fitting to pass along a recipe that was near and dear to their hearts… but I have uncovered a few other gems on the glossy pages of this inspired book.

And suddenly, I have a new appreciation for turkey burgers! Many thanks to Emily and Lyla for allowing me to share what has become a new favorite in our house. 

As in, I have made these burgers for a quick, crowd-pleasing dinner three times in as many weeks.

And would you believe that my family ranks them right up there with traditional beef burgers? (Even those among us who aren’t big blue cheese fans.)

So why are these burgers so special?

Initially, this recipe spoke to me because the twins mentioned it came from their grandmother (aka “Grandmolly”) and has long been a favorite of their father. Any time-tested family recipe-and especially one that has stood up to the palates of several generations of skilled cooks-is bound to be fabulous!

In addition to the established family appeal, however, these burgers are easy. And unique.

Blue cheese and a bit of mayo act as a binder and provide moisture and incredible flavor to lean ground turkey. No more bland, dry turkey burgers.

As an added bonus, I’ve discovered the patties can be prepped several hours in advance.

Blue Cheese Turkey Burgers-3 simple ingredients make THE BEST turkey burgers ever...tender, flavorful and not the least bit dry. Easy to cook on the grill or stovetop.

What about substitutions?

The ingredient list is short, so there’s not much to worry about. Though the mayonnaise enhances overall flavor, the burgers don’t taste like mayonnaise at all. Don’t skip it, however, because this ingredient supplies moisture and acts as a binder.

After making the recipe as written the first time, and considering that blue cheese may not appeal to all, I was curious how feta would stack up. (And blue cheese fan or not, options are always welcome, right?)

While both were (and remain!) quite popular, my family voted blue cheese as the favorite by a narrow margin. Feel free to try the burgers both ways, and as I’ve noted in the recipe, you may go scant with the cheese measurement the first time around if you’re skeptical or simply prefer a mild flavor profile.

Why has everyone fallen in love with blue cheese burgers? Two things. Three things!

First, the cheese further infuses moisture throughout the lean meat, which has the potential to dry out if slightly overcooked.

Second, the cheese creates a lovely golden crust that enhances flavor, texture and further locks in the juices of the protein-rich meat.

The final reason is an added flavor note: I long ago stopped adding a slice of cheese to my burger because the flavor always seemed to get lost amidst the bun, an array of toppings and condiments, not to mention the burger itself.

The slice of cheese was a habit that I ultimately deemed a “why bother?” Skipping the cheese became an easy way to enjoy the calories and fat grams elsewhere with no sense of sacrifice.

With these burgers, however, the flavor of the cheese is noticed. In fact, it shines.☀️

Turkey burgers can sometimes be blah, but not these turkey burgers. The end result is a protein-packed meal that truly satisfies.

Serving suggestions:

As I mention below, my favorite way to top the burgers is with lettuce, tomato, avocado slices, pickled red onions (or slivers of red onion) and a dollop of sriracha mayo. In keeping with the blue cheese theme, I’ve also used Frank’s original RedHot sauce instead of sriracha. Optionally, you could stir the hot sauce into ketchup instead of mayo.

Sautéed mushrooms and crisp bacon also complement these burgers beautifully.

So satisfying are these burgers, little else is needed for a filling meal. I’ve served them with a simple salad or, as pictured here, a handful of crunchy chips.

And feel free to serve the turkey burgers bun-less, as you would a slice of meatloaf or any other basic protein on your plate.

In the colder months, pair with your favorite roasted or sautéed vegetables and baked or mashed potatoes. When summertime rolls around, enjoy the turkey burgers with corn on the cob, baked beans, vine-ripened tomatoes, and/or a Favorite Broccoli Salad.   

PB&J Breakfast Bars -Healthy, filling and easy to make, Rachel Ray herself thinks these tasty bars are a total win! Convenient for grab-and-go breakfasts and anytime snacking.

PB&J Breakfast Bars are another recipe that you may enjoy from the pages of The Teen Kitchen by Emily and Lyla Allen.

Blue Cheese Turkey Burgers-3 simple ingredients make THE BEST turkey burgers ever...tender, flavorful and not the least bit dry. Easy to cook on the grill or stovetop.

Blue Cheese (or Feta) Turkey Burgers
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 16 minutes
Total Time: 26 minutes
Yield: 4 burgers
Three simple ingredients make THE BEST turkey burgers ever. Tender, flavorful and not the least bit dry, they're easy to cook on the grill or stovetop.
  • 1 pound ground turkey breast
  • 3/4 cup (3 ounces/85 grams) crumbled blue cheese*
  • 1/4 cup (52grams) mayonnaise (I use Hellman’s regular)
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt and several turns of the pepper mill
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or enough cooking spray to coat your skillet
  • Options for serving: rolls; lettuce, tomato, onions or pickled red onions; avocado slices or guacamole; Frank’s RedHot or sriracha sauce; sriracha mayo and/or any of your other favorite burger condiments**

Mix the blue cheese, mayonnaise, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl. Add the turkey and mix until blended, being careful not to overwork the mixture. Shape into 4 patties. Make ahead tip: At this point you can loosely cover and refrigerate for several hours.

Add the oil to a frying pan (cast iron works well if you have it) and turn the heat to medium. When the pan is hot, add the patties and cook for 7-8 minutes per side or until both sides of the burgers are golden brown and cooked through. (Helpful hints: The burgers may seem to stick at first but, if the pan is greased, will release with a gentle nudge when ready to flip. Also, if using a thermometer to gauge doneness, look for a reading of 165°F for perfectly cooked burgers. Optionally, you may cook the burgers on an oiled grill.)

Transfer the burgers to a platter, and serve on a roll with toppings of choice.

Leftover burgers can be gently reheated and are delicious..



*I’ve also made these burgers with feta. When pressed, my family prefers blue cheese (even those who typically don’t care for blue cheese!) slightly over feta. Feel free to experiment. Also, if you’re not sure how some diners will feel about the flavor of the cheese, you could go lighter the first time – I’d suggest ½ cup – until you’re sure. Ultimately, the cheese adds a great deal of moisture in addition to the added flavor.

**For an easy condiment that everyone seems to enjoy, I often serve the burgers with sriracha mayo: simply start with a ¼ to ⅓ cup of mayonnaise and then stir in 1-2 teaspoons of the sriracha (or to taste). I’ve made this with Frank’s RedHot sauce, too, but sriracha is my personal favorite.

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  1. Don Risher

    Simple + Genius!
    I made this twice. Once in my toaster oven, 2 patties and then I froze 2 patties then put them on the grill a few days later. Grill was better, both were AWESOME. To pile on to the simplicity element, try them with just a lightly toasted roll and some Japanese mayo thats it! WOOF!

  2. Mark

    Thank you for sharing. I made these yesterday, making a batch of 2.5 lbs of ground turkey. It was a risk having not tried it, but it paid off. I cooked from fresh, which was just a little messy, but I froze the rest and they should cook up nicely I think. I used the weight measurement (I weigh almost everything), just adjusting as necessary.

    The burgers were outstanding and a nice change of pace from beef. My DW ate hers over greens and I had it naked on a roll. Juicy and flavorful. Highly recommended!

    Helpful hint: if you use something other than kosher salt, adjust your recipe according to the type of salt you use.

    1. Ann Post author

      Thanks for the feedback, Mark. I am equally delighted the risk paid off! I’m a scale fan as well by the way. Makes the measuring process so much quicker, and you can’t beat the accuracy.

  3. Martin

    I noticed a small error on your Blue Cheese (or Feta) Turkey Burgers recipe. Under ingredients it says “3/4 cup (3 ounces/85 grams) crumbled blue cheese” but 3 ounces/85 grams is only 3/8 cup, half that much of a cup.

    Regardless, totally agree it makes the best turkey burgers ever (with the proper amount of cheese)!

    1. Ann Post author

      Hi Martin, Thank you for your comment and for giving me the chance to check my accuracy. I double-checked the measurements, both on a package of crumbled blue cheese and with another source for measurements by weight. These are the numbers I get in both places, so feel free to use those weights or the 3/4 cup measure to replicate what I do. As you say, blue cheese makes delicious burgers – and I’d rather have a bit too much than not enough!

  4. Kim Post author

    I actually got ingredients for both your turkey burger recipes and made them on the grill yesterday. Yum! The mayo and the cheese in this one made them so moist and flavorful. They were a little messy to handle but no issues after freezing for a bit. Definitely will make them again.

  5. Mary Lou Keller

    Hi Ann! This recipe looks wonderful! I am going to make this weekend for our 4th of July STay at Home cook out. I have ground chicken breast instead of turkey but you had me at blue cheese! LOVE blue cheese in anything!

    I also want to make your recipe for pickled red onions. Something I have wanted to try for a couple of years! I will let you know how it all turns out.
    Have a great July 4th holiday!

    1. Ann Post author

      Hi Mary Lou! I’m sure these will be delicious with ground chicken and a few of those pickled on top. Enjoy your cookout and do report back! Happy 4th to you!

  6. Alexis M

    Made these last night and They were a hit! My fiancé had been reluctant to try but ended up loving them! I loved that they were quick and tasty. Served on Martins potato rolls with lettuce and tomato. Will make again!

    1. Ann Post author

      Yay, Alexis! I’m so happy these were a hit and I know what you mean-the idea of the pungent cheese can be off-putting, but it really works (even for some in my family who don’t truly love it!). Thanks for letting me know!

  7. Laura

    I made these blue cheese turkey burgers the day I received your email! I coated each side of the burger with some oil and cooked them on the grill. It was a little tricky not to have them stick when turning them over, but well worth the trouble. They turned out great and were super moist as advertised! Topped them with ketchup and pickles on a toasted bun. Will definitely make them again.

    1. Ann Post author

      Awesome news, Laura! I’m thrilled they’re a keeper and appreciate your feedback. I think the cheese makes these more prone to sticking, which can be more pronounced with a less seasoned surface. A little extra oil on the grill grate (or on the burgers as you did) is a good idea!