These Air Fryer Turkey Burgers are so flavorful, juicy, and moist. Ready in less than 20 minutes, they're perfect for a quick and easy weeknight dinner. With endless toppings to choose from, everyone in your family will love digging into these healthy turkey burgers on burger night. Egg-free, dairy-free, and low-carb friendly.
Raise your hand if you've ever experienced a dry, tough, and flavorless turkey burger! I certainly have.
Turkey burgers are notorious for being boring, dry, and not nearly as good as regular ground beef burgers. But, I'm here to change that with these easy air fryer turkey burgers.
To keep these burgers moist and juicy, I add a few helpful ingredients. I also leave out typical binding ingredients like breadcrumbs and eggs. In my experience, these ingredients make the turkey patties easier to handle, but they make for a dryer, tougher turkey burger.
Another trick is to cook your turkey burgers to a perfect 165°F in the center. A meat thermometer is the best way to do that.
So, if you're ready to experience an actually delicious turkey burger, keep reading to learn exactly how to make these homemade turkey burgers in the air fryer.
>> Need an easy side dish to go with your turkey burgers? Give these Air Fryer Fingerling Potatoes a try!
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Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Juicy & Flavorful- Adding grated onion keeps these turkey burgers from drying out in the air fryer.
- Easy to Make- Just mix up the burger mixture, shape it into patties, and cook. Easy peasy!
- Ready in 20 Minutes- In less than 20 minutes, you can have deliciously juicy turkey burgers on the dinner table.
- Versatile- These turkey burgers pair well with an endless variety of toppings and side dishes.
- No Breadcrumbs- Typically used for binding, breadcrumbs make turkey burgers too dense for my taste. The burger mixture for these turkey burgers is a little loose, but it's worth dealing with for a moist and juicy result.
- Egg-Free- Another binding ingredient that I leave out, which makes this recipe egg-free and perfect for anyone with an egg allergy.
Here are some notes on key ingredients. For a full list of ingredients, check out the recipe card below.
- Ground Turkey- I use 93% lean ground turkey. I find that anything leaner is too dry. The recipe calls for 1 ¼ pounds because that's how it is often sold in grocery stores in my area. If you can only find one-pound packages, that works too.
- Onion- Grating the onion releases its juices, which keeps our turkey burgers moist. If you don't have a grater, you can finely mince the onion with a knife and cutting board.
- Ketchup- Adds flavor, moisture, and a little sweetness.
- Soy Sauce- For moisture, salt, and a hint of umami flavor. I prefer to use low-sodium. If you use regular soy sauce, leave out the kosher salt.
- Dijon Mustard- Adds a bit of moisture and a tangy flavor.
- Seasonings- I kept it simple with a combination of garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and black pepper.
Here are some notes on any special equipment I used to make this recipe.
- Air Fryer- This recipe was made using a basket-style air fryer. I have not tested this in a toaster oven-style air fryer. However, I believe it would work about the same. Keep in mind, the burgers may cook slightly differently in a toaster oven-style air fryer or may take a few minutes longer to cook.
>> Looking to buy an air fryer? I love my 5.5-Quart Ninja Max XL Air Fryer, although I do wish it was a little larger.
Step by Step Instructions
Here is how to make these juicy turkey burgers in the air fryer.
Step 1: Make the turkey burger mixture. Preheat the air fryer to 375°F for 5 minutes. While the air fryer is preheating, thoroughly mix the ground turkey, grated onion, ketchup, soy sauce, dijon mustard, and seasonings in a large mixing bowl. Shape the burger mixture into 4 equal-sized, ½-inch thick patties. The mixture will be a little soft and loose - that's okay.
Step 2: Air fry the turkey burgers. Spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray and place the patties inside the basket in a single layer (if your basket is small, you may have to work in batches). Cook for 7 minutes on one side, then flip and cook for an additional 4-6 minutes on the other side. The turkey burgers are done when they reach an internal temperature of 165°F on a meat thermometer. Serve on a sesame seed bun or potato roll with your favorite burger toppings.
Tips for Success
- Make the patties as uniform as possible. For turkey burgers that cook through at the same time, make sure your patties are uniform in size and shape.
- Dent the patties. If your turkey burger patties are turning into turkey burger balls in the air fryer, try making a good-sized dent in the middle of each patty before cooking.
- Work in batches (if necessary). You want the turkey burgers to be in a single layer in your air fryer basket. For me, that means I can only cook two burgers at a time.
- Use a meat thermometer. An instant read thermometer is the best way to tell if your turkey burgers are cooked through. If you don't have one, cut into one of the burgers and watch for the juices to run clear.
- Leave the air fryer off to melt the cheese. The first time I melted cheese on an air fryer burger, I turned the air fryer on and the cheese went flying everywhere. To melt cheese on a burger, simply place a slice on top of each burger and close the basket. The residual heat will do the rest.
Substitutions and Variations
Here are a few ways you can try customizing this air fryer turkey burger recipe to fit your diet and taste preferences.
- Ground Turkey- Try this recipe with 85% lean ground turkey, if preferred. Or use ground chicken to make air fryer chicken burgers.
- Onion- Swap the grated raw onion for caramelized onion, roasted eggplant, or roasted red peppers for a more intense flavor.
- Ketchup- Tomato paste, puréed roasted red peppers, or hot sauce can be used.
- Soy Sauce- Use tamari, liquid aminos, or coconut aminos for gluten-free alternatives. Teriyaki sauce, while thicker and sweeter than soy sauce, would also taste delicious.
- Dijon Mustard- Yellow mustard, brown mustard, or hot mustard can all be swapped for dijon mustard.
- Seasonings- Feel free to get creative here. Try adding Italian seasoning, oregano, chives, curry powder, chili powder, or cayenne pepper.
- Gluten-Free- For gluten-free air fryer turkey burgers, swap the soy sauce for tamari or liquid aminos. And, of course, serve on gluten-free buns.
- Buffalo- Swap the ketchup and mustard for Frank's RedHot Sauce and add a few shakes of cayenne pepper for a spicy version of this turkey burger.
- Teriyaki- Replace the soy sauce, ketchup, and mustard with teriyaki sauce. Swap the grated yellow onion for some minced scallions.
- Italian-Style- Opt for tomato paste or marinara sauce in place of the ketchup and mustard. Then, add a little Italian seasoning. Dice up some fresh mozzarella cheese and fresh basil for extra deliciousness.
What to Serve with Air Fryer Turkey Burgers?
An air fryer turkey burger is a delicious main dish any time of year. With endless toppings and side dishes, it's fun to mix and match. Here are a few of my favorite turkey burger toppings and side dishes to serve with these air fryer turkey burgers.
- Leafy Greens (Romaine, Iceberg, Green Leaf, Bibb, Spinach, or Arugula)
- Onions (Red, Yellow, White, Shallots, Scallions)
- Pickles (Cucumber, Onion, Jalapeño)
- Condiments (Mayonnaise, Aioli, Ketchup, Mustard, BBQ Sauce, Relish, Ranch Dressing, Tzatziki, Horseradish, Balsamic Glaze)
- Cheese (Cheddar, American, Muenster, Swiss, Mozzarella, Feta, Goat Cheese)
- Caramelized or Fried Onions
- Fried Egg
- Leafy Green Salads (Try this Kale Crunch Salad or this Spinach Caprese Salad)
- Baked Potatoes
- French Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, or Butternut Squash Fries
- Roasted Vegetables (Try these Roasted Potatoes and Broccoli, these Crispy Brussels Sprouts, or these Roasted Carrots and Green Beans)
- Potato Salad, Pasta Salad, Orzo Pesto Salad, or Grain Salad
- Soup (Try this Corn Chowder or this Pumpkin Soup)
- Cheesy Broccoli Bites
- Macaroni and Cheese
Storage and Reheating
How to Store
- Refrigerator- According to the USDA, cooked turkey can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
- Freezer- Cooked turkey burgers can be stored in a freezer-safe plastic bag in the freezer for up to 2 months. To freeze, place the burgers on a baking sheet in the freezer until firm. Then, wrap each individual burger tightly in plastic wrap and place them inside a freezer-safe plastic bag.
How to Reheat
If you know you'll have leftovers, it's best to store your turkey burgers without any toppings. The following reheating instructions are for the turkey burger patties only.
- Oven/Toaster Oven- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place a baking sheet on the lower oven rack to catch any drippings. Then, place the turkey burgers directly on the top oven rack. Cook for 3 minutes on one side. Flip and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes or until fully warmed through.
- Stovetop- Heat a cast iron skillet or non-stick skillet on the stovetop over medium heat. Place the leftover turkey burgers in the skillet, then drizzle a few tablespoons of water into the skillet. Cover with a lid and heat for about 5 minutes.
- Air Fryer- Place your leftover burgers in the basket of an air fryer. Set the air fryer to 325°F and cook for 3-4 minutes or until fully heated through.
- Microwave- In a pinch, the microwave can be used to reheat turkey burgers. Place a single turkey burger on a microwave-safe plate. Drizzle a teaspoon of water onto the plate and cover the dish with a microwave lid or another plate. Microwave on half power (50%) for one minute. Flip the burger over and reheat in 30-second intervals until warmed through.
Looking to get a head start on weeknight dinner preparation? Luckily, turkey burger patties can be made up to 24 hours before cooking and stored in the refrigerator.
To Freeze Uncooked Turkey Burgers: Make the turkey burger patties and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Flash freeze them for about 45-60 minutes or until firm to the touch. Wrap the individual patties tightly in plastic wrap, then store them all in a freezer-safe plastic bag for up to 2 months. Cook frozen turkey burgers in the air fryer or thaw them overnight in the refrigerator.
Frequently Asked Questions
It depends. The temperature of the air fryer and how thick you make your patties make a difference. For this recipe, the air fryer is set to 375°F. The turkey burgers, when formed into ½-inch thick patties, cook for about 11-13 minutes.
The most accurate way to know when your turkey burgers are done is to use an instant read meat thermometer. The center of the turkey burgers should be 165 degrees Fahrenheit when cooked through. If you don't have a meat thermometer, cut into one of the turkey burgers to see if the juices run clear.
Air fryers are notorious for shrinking burgers. The quick blast of heat from the air fryer causes the proteins in the burger to seize up, turning your beautiful patties into hockey pucks. To help prevent this, make your burger patties thin and press a sizable dent into the center with your fingers.
To melt cheese on top of an air fryer turkey cheeseburger, you'll want to turn the air fryer off. After the burgers have finished cooking, leave them inside the air fryer basket and place a slice of cheese on each one. Then, close the basket and let the residual heat melt the cheese.
Cooking frozen turkey patties will take a few extra minutes. Cook the burger for 10 minutes on one side, then flip and cook for an additional 6-8 minutes or until the burger is fully heated through.
More Air Fryer Recipes
- Air Fryer Chicken Sausage
- Air Fryer Butternut Squash Fries
- Cheesy Air Fryer Broccoli Bites
- Air Fryer Parmesan-Crusted Halibut
Air Fryer Turkey Burgers
- 1 ¼ pounds ground turkey 93% lean
- ¼ large yellow onion grated or finely minced
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
- ½ tablespoon dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Cooking spray
- Buns and toppings for serving optional
- Preheat the air fryer to 375°F for 5 minutes. While the air fryer is preheating, thoroughly mix the ground turkey, grated onion, ketchup, soy sauce, dijon mustard, and seasonings in a large mixing bowl. Shape the burger mixture into 4 equal-sized, ½-inch thick patties. The mixture will be a little soft and loose - that's okay.1 ¼ pounds ground turkey, ¼ large yellow onion, 2 tablespoons ketchup, 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce, ½ tablespoon dijon mustard, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon onion powder, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray and place the patties inside the basket in a single layer (if your basket is small, you may have to work in batches). Cook for 7 minutes on one side, then flip and cook for an additional 4-6 minutes on the other side. The turkey burgers are done when they reach an internal temperature of 165°F on a meat thermometer. Serve on a sesame seed bun or potato roll with your favorite burger toppings.Cooking spray
- Important Note: This recipe was made using a basket-style air fryer. I have not tested this in a toaster oven-style air fryer. However, I believe it would work the same or may take a few minutes longer to cook.
- Quick Tip: If your turkey burger patties are turning into turkey burger balls in the air fryer, try making a good-sized dent in the middle of each patty before cooking.
- Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days and in the freezer for up to 2 months.
- Make Ahead: Shape patties and store them in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before cooking.
- To Freeze Uncooked Turkey Burgers: Make the turkey burger patties and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Flash freeze them for about 45-60 minutes or until firm to the touch. Wrap the individual patties tightly in plastic wrap, then store them all in a freezer-safe plastic bag for up to 2 months. Cook frozen turkey burgers in the air fryer or thaw them overnight in the refrigerator.