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Tasty Turkey Burgers with Avocado

I recently discovered these amazing California-inspired turkey burgers.

They take just 15 minutes to prep, they’re great on the grill or you can pan-fry them instead (find out which method is best a little further down the page!), and they’re delicious!

And the best part? They’re great for your bones too.

Turkey is a rich source of protein which is a key component of bone health. It’s also one of the most nutrient-dense meats and contains plenty of potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium— all of which support strong, healthy bones. 

The “California” in these burgers refers to the clever use of nutritious toppings. Avocado is rich in healthy fats, spinach is loaded with vitamins and minerals, and cottage cheese is a healthy source of calcium!

Finally, these burgers substitute lettuce instead of buns, so you’re avoiding refined carbs that can cause bone-damaging inflammation. (Note that to make these totally gluten-free, you can simply leave out the bread crumbs.)

Sounds good right? So let’s get cooking! 

Tasty Turkey Burgers With Avocado

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 347 kcal


  • 9 oz turkey (minced)
  • iceberg lettuce
  • 6 oz beefsteak tomato
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 oz baby spinach
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp southwest spice blend
  • 3 tbsp cottage cheese
  • 4 tbsp mayonnaise (optional)
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • salt and pepper (as needed)
Nutrition Facts
Tasty Turkey Burgers With Avocado
Amount Per Serving
Calories 347 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Fat 15g23%
Saturated Fat 7g44%
Cholesterol 89mg30%
Sodium 455mg20%
Potassium 813mg23%
Carbohydrates 26g9%
Fiber 8g33%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 30g60%
Vitamin A 3769IU75%
Vitamin C 49mg59%
Calcium 366mg37%
Iron 6mg33%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


  1. Prep your veggies. Peel then mince or grate garlic. Zest then juice lemon. Cut tomato into ¼ inch slices. Peel, pit, and thinly slice avocado.
  2. Prep your dressing. In a small bowl, combine mayo, cottage cheese, lemon zest, and 1 tbsp lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper as needed. Stir to combine and set aside.
  3. Make your patties. In a medium bowl, combine turkey, panko breadcrumbs, garlic, dijon mustard, southwest spice blend, and salt and pepper as needed. Form turkey mixture into two 4-inch wide patties. (Note your mixture may feel wet, but this is normal!)
  4. Cook your burgers. Heat your grill or add a drizzle of olive oil to a large pan over medium heat. Once hot, add your patties and cook 5-6 min per side, until golden-brown and cooked through. (Note your patties should reach a minimum internal temperature of 165°F.)
  5. Put it all together! Spread half the dressing on the iceberg lettuce buns, then layer with patties, spinach, tomato, and avocado slices. Enjoy. 🙂

Recipe Notes

Feel free to tweak these ingredients as you see fit. For example, you can leave out the mayo or swap it for an avocado oil-based mayo that contains healthy fats. You can also make these gluten-free by omitting the bread crumbs!

*Don’t see southwest spice blend at your local grocery store? No problem! You can make it yourself by combining: 1 tbsp salt, 2 tsp garlic powder, 2 tsp chilli powder, 2 tsp ground cumin, 2 tsp pepper, and 1/2 tsp unsweetened cocoa.

Turkey Burger Takeaways

I hope you enjoy these turkey burgers. They’re the perfect summertime menu item— whether you barbecue them or pan-fry them like I did in the video! 

Plus, they’re full of the protein and nutrients you need to support strong, healthy bones. 

Now, it’s worth noting that flame-grilled food has a downside. The char on these foods can actually cause inflammation if consumed in excess. And, of course, inflammation can contribute to bone loss. So, you shouldn’t eat barbecue too often. That’s why I prefer to pan-fry these myself!

But if you do make these on the grill, just make sure to clean it thoroughly first and grease it with a little bit of extra virgin olive oil to minimize char.

In terms of sides, I like to serve my turkey burgers with baked sweet potato fries— a healthy and delicious alternative to french fries. But they’d also pair nicely with any number of side dishes like coleslaw, roasted veggies, or a simple salad. 

I’d love to know how your turkey burgers turn out, and what side dish you decide to serve them with! So please share with me in the comments below. 🙂

Author: Monica Straith, BS

Monica is the PR and Outreach Manager and Fitness Lead at AlgaeCal. She’s an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and Nutrition Specialist, and has a B.S. and B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she played varsity soccer for four years. Monica pulls from her experience in athletics and health to contribute to AlgaeCal and has also been featured on myfitnesspal blog, Prevention, and Huffington Post.