Why Fresh Breadcrumbs Are Better For Binding Turkey Burgers

Whether you're trying to cut down on red meat, eat healthier, want to switch things up, or just because, there are many reasons to pick a turkey burger over a regular beef burger. However, as anyone who has ever made, or even had, a turkey burger knows, they can far too easily turn out bland, crumbly, and dry.

To help the turkey burger patties keep their shape, it's important to use a binding agent. While most people will reach for some dried breadcrumbs as their binder, in the case of turkey burgers, it makes a lot more sense to use fresh breadcrumbs instead. The extra moisture in fresh breadcrumbs can help prevent the patties from drying out. You'll want to use small bits of breadcrumbs, which you can achieve by using the pulse function on your food processor, or simply using your hands to tear apart the fresh bread.

What if you don't have fresh breadcrumbs?

If you don't have fresh bread to make fresh breadcrumbs and need to make the turkey burgers right away, there are ways around this. You can add extra moisture to dried breadcrumbs (either premade or made from stale bread) by soaking them in some milk — goat's milk in particular, with its higher fat content, is a game-changing ingredient to add to turkey burgers. You can also add a little egg or mayonnaise for extra moisture. Cheese is another great option for a binder — semi-soft cheese is the best type of cheese to bind juicy turkey burgers and works best when grated and incorporated into the patty.

Also, make sure you have enough fat in the patty – 20% to 25% is an ideal range for juicy burgers that are not too sloppy. Since turkey is inherently lean, you'll want to add some extra fat to the patty, such as grated cold butter or different cooking oils. Bacon is another great option and will add both flavor and fat. You can also opt for more dark meat than white meat in your ground turkey mixture, which will also increase your overall fat percentage for the juiciest turkey burger ever.