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Vietnamese Turkey Burger with Sambal Oelek Mayo

January 10, 2011


Vietnamese Turkey Burger

Happy 2011!  I can’t believe how fast the end of the year went — thank you to all of you for putting up with the gap in time on our blog.  I won’t even begin to rattle off the things that kept us busy in 2010, but just know that this year, we’re back and better than ever.

Though it hasn’t officially been blogged here, the Asian chicken burger is a family favorite for Marc and me.  We have made this chicken burger for ourselves, guests, family, you name it.  And we love it!  But, I thought I would try something different, as far as Asian-inspired poultry burgers go.  I found a recipe for these delicious Vietnamese Turkey Burgers on the blog A Doctor’s Kitchen.  This burger is lean and mean — and even though I used very lean ground turkey, which has a tendency to be dry when it’s cooked, but this recipe has grated zucchini in it, which lends a lot of moisture to the burgers.

This is a seriously MEATY burger, and very different from our Asian chicken burgers, as they have more oil and breadcrumbs, and sort of taste like the inside of a dumpling.  Each burger brings a little something different to the table, and while the Asian chicken burger is probably always #1 in my book, this burger is definitely nice, flavorful and pretty spicy! Make it — and its companion sambal oelek mayo! — tonight.


Vietnamese Turkey Burger with Sambal Oelek Mayo

adapted from A Doctor’s Kitchen

makes 4


  • 1 medium zucchini, grated
  • ½ cup thinly sliced scallions
  • 2 tablespoons sambal oelek, divided
  • 4 tablespoons chopped Thai basil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 3 teaspoons sugar, divided
  • 3 teaspoons fish sauce, divided
  • 1 pound ground turkey breast
  • Salt
  • Cooking spray
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  1. In a large bowl, combine the zucchini, scallions, 1 tablespoon of the chili sauce, basil, mint, garlic, 2 teaspoons of the sugar, and 2 teaspoons of the fish sauce. Stir to blend.
  2. Add the turkey and work gently, to make sure everything is well combined.  Mixture will be sticky.  Form into four solid patties, about an inch thick.
  3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Spray with cooking spray.  When pan is hot, add the patties and cook approximately 6 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cook 4 minutes longer. Turn and repeat on 0ther side (6 minutes on medium-high, 4 minutes on medium) until nicely browned and cooked through.  Make sure that burgers are cooked all the way through!
  4. Meanwhile, in a small bowl combine the mayonnaise and remaining chili sauce, sugar and fish sauce.  Blend with spoon.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Serve burgers on a bun with a dollop of mayonnaise and enjoy!
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