Juicy, flavorful Southwest burgers are topped with melted Pepper Jack cheese, placed on a bun, and topped with diced tomatoes. It’s a simple dinner that only requires a couple of steps!
How to keep lean ground turkey from becoming dry and dense.
I had to play around with this recipe a few times until I could get it right.
When you use 99% lean ground turkey, you risk the chance of the meat being dry and dense. This dryness can be easily masked when the ground turkey is used with recipes that include wet ingredients like chili or these Turkey Parmesan Quesadillas. However, the dryness of lean turkey is much more noticeable when making burgers.
The solution: add other sources of fat and/or wet ingredients.
The fat in meat is what makes it juicy, so when making burgers with extra lean meat, the trick is to substitute the fat with other ingredients. With these particular “Kickin’ Southwest Burgers” I decided to use diced tomatoes (for water content) and mayonnaise (for fat content).
These burgers are bursting with flavor. The kick you get with these burgers comes from the Pepper Jack cheese and the canned diced tomatoes that include green chilies. If you are not a fan of spicier recipes, you can substitute the Pepper Jack cheese for sliced provolone (thin or reduced fat) and the diced tomatoes with green chilies for plain diced tomatoes.
Plus, on one occasion, I topped the burger with sliced avocado and that was super yummy! Avocado has a way of taming the spicy ingredients it is paired with, so that can be a great option as well… just be sure to count the extra points if you are doing WW.
Light buns to keep the points down.
Speaking of points, our grocery store carries light hamburger buns that are just 2 WW SP each, so I always use them when I am making burgers. For a list of light buns that are 2 WW SP each and bread that is 1 WW SP per slice, you can check out our “List of Low WW FreeStyle bread and buns.”
Ready to try some kickin’ Southwest cheeseburgers?
Here is what you need:
1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chilies, divided
1 pound 99% lean ground turkey
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon light mayonnaise
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon Better than Bouillon
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
5 slices reduced fat Pepper Jack cheese
5 light hamburger buns
Here is what you do:
Set aside 1/3 cup tomatoes with chilies.
Combine the remainder of the tomatoes with the ground turkey, onion, mayonnaise, garlic powder, bouillon, cumin, and chili powder. Mix really well, being sure to distribute the Better than Bouillon with the rest of the ingredients.
Preheat a grill pan or skillet to medium-high heat and spray with cooking spray. Using damp hands, form ground turkey mixture into 5 equal patties, about 1/2 cup each. Grill burgers for 4-5 minutes on both sides, or until fully cooked and lightly browned on the outside.
Place one slice Pepper Jack cheese on each patty and allow cheese to heat until it melts, about 2 minutes.
Place one burger on each bun and top each with 1 tablespoon tomatoes with chilies.
- Serves: 5 cheeseburgers
- Serving size: 1 cheeseburger
- Calories: 271
- Fat: 7 g
- Saturated fat: 3 g
- Carbohydrates: 23 g
- Sugar: 4 g
- Sodium: 610 mg
- Fiber: 5 g
- Protein: 30 g
- Cholesterol: 59 mg
- 1 pound 99% lean ground turkey
- 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chilies, divided
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon light mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon Better than Bouillon
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- Cooking spray
- 5 slices reduced fat Pepper Jack cheese
- 5 light hamburger buns
- Set aside ⅓ cup tomatoes with chilies.
- Combine the remainder of the tomatoes with the ground turkey, onion, mayonnaise, garlic powder, bouillon, cumin, and chili powder. Mix really well, being sure to distribute the Better than Bouillon with the rest of the ingredients.
- Preheat a grill pan or skillet to medium-high heat and spray with cooking spray. Using damp hands, form ground turkey mixture into 5 equal patties, about ½ cup each.
- Grill burgers for 4-5 minutes on both sides, or until fully cooked and lightly browned on the outside.
- Place one slice Pepper Jack cheese on each patty and allow cheese to heat until it melts, about 2 minutes.
- Place one burger on each bun and top each with 1 tablespoon tomatoes with chilies.
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*SmartPoints® calculated by Meal Planning Mommies; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc. All recipe ingredients except optional items included in determining nutritional estimates. SmartPoints® values calculated without Weight Watchers Zero Points fruits and vegetables using the WW Recipe Builder.