Recipes > Lunch/Dinner > Green Chili Turkey Burger with White Beans

Green Chili Turkey Burger with White Beans

These bean and turkey burgers are a much healthier choice than their greasy counterparts; by adding beans and replacing beef with turkey, you increase fiber while decreasing saturated fat.
Green chili turkey burger Cut in half on a blue plate

This is a variation of the beef and bean burgers base recipe featured in our Whole Life Meal Plan. If you are a fan of white chili, then this burger is for you! Made with white beans, green chilies, lean turkey, and spices, this green chili turkey burger is as tasty as chili, but way easier to hold!

Learn How to Make the Base Recipe

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Culinary Tips for the Best Green Chili Turkey Burger

If you have picky eaters, dice the onion finely so that they don’t notice them. 

When mixing the ingredients or forming the patties, don’t overwork the meat. Otherwise, the burgers will turn out tough.

Match the patty size to your bun, noting that they will slightly shrink.

Use a food thermometer to check for doneness. 165ºF is the desired internal temperature for poultry for food safety.

You can cook these burgers on the stovetop instead of the oven, but note they don’t stay together quite as well. Heat a skillet over medium. Add oil to the pan. Once the oil is shimmering, add the patties. Cook 4-5 minutes per side. 

If cooking burgers on the stovetop, remember the 3 F’s of flavor: fire, fat, and food! Heat your pan, heat your oil, then add the burgers. Once the burgers are on the skillet, don’t move them around. Keeping them in place helps ensure maximum flavor development and browning.

Ingredient Substitutions

  • White Beans: use any low-sodium white bean of your choice. Cannellini, great northern, or navy will all work. You can also use 1 ½ cups of leftover beans from our stovetop or Instant Pot beans base recipes.
  • Ground Turkey: substitute ground 93% lean turkey, grass-fed beef, bison, lamb, venison, or chicken.
  • Green Chiles: use mild, medium, or spicy canned varieties. You can also use ½ cup freshly roasted green chiles. 
  • Panko Bread Crumbs: substitute plain, whole wheat, or seasoned bread crumbs, but cut back on the added salt if you do. Panko is typically very low in sodium. If you want burgers without breadcrumbs, leave them out! Just note that they might not hold together as well.
  • Red Onion: use white, yellow, or green onions or shallot. You can also substitute ½ teaspoon onion powder.
  • Cilantro: substitute Italian parsley or chives, but note the flavor will be different.
  • Garlic: substitute 1 teaspoon pre-minced garlic, 1 teaspoon garlic flakes, ½ teaspoon granulated garlic, or ¼ teaspoon garlic powder.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil: substitute canola oil, avocado oil, or cooking spray.

Recipe Variations

Mix ¼ cup shredded cheese into the burger mixture for some gooey cheesy goodness.

Turn these turkey burgers into sliders by reducing the patty size to ~2 inches in diameter.

We recommend cooking turkey burgers with beans in the oven or on the stovetop, but you are welcome to try grilling them. We’d love to hear how they turn out for you!

Want some burger flavor inspiration?

Use our beef and bean burgers base recipe as a guide, then have fun exploring other flavors, ingredients, and textures!

Equipment Recommendations

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Is this green chili turkey burger recipe healthy?

These bean and turkey burgers are a much healthier choice than their greasy counterparts; by adding beans and replacing beef with turkey, you increase fiber, decrease saturated fat, and turn this into a plant-forward recipe. The featured ingredients in this recipe are white beans, turkey, and cilantro.

White Beans

Beans of all varieties contain plant-based protein, complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrients promote gut health, decrease risk of developing heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, and promote a healthy weight. Beans are a key component of longevity diets around the world.


Turkey is a lean source of protein. It is also rich in B vitamins and minerals, such as iron. 


Not only do fresh herbs add a pop of freshness and flavor to a dish, but they add nutrition too! Cilantro is rich in essential vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that promote health.

Learn more about health benefits of different foods and ingredients or in our book, To Your Taste!

Serving Suggestions

Pair with roasted vegetables and a side salad to make a beautiful Whole Life Plate

Serve leftover patties crumbled onto tostadas or quesadillas, or on top of a salad drizzled with vinaigrette.  

How to Store and Reheat Turkey Burgers

Cool leftover burgers completely, then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. 

Leftover burgers can also be frozen for up to 3 months. To freeze, place on a baking sheet and freeze for 1-4 hours. Once the burgers are partially frozen, transfer to a freezer-safe bag or container. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before heating.

To reheat, place burgers on a pan and place in a cold oven. Turn the oven to heat to 350ºF. Once the oven hits 350° F, your burgers should be warmed and ready!

Want more nutritious dinner recipes?

Try out these delicious recipes!

Hummus Pizza Base Recipe

Healthy Beef Tacos with Mushrooms

Baked Tostadas Base Recipe

Salmon with Yogurt Sauce Base Recipe

Green chili turkey burger Cut in half on a blue plate

Green Chili Turkey Burger with White Beans

This is a variation of the beef and bean burgers base recipe featured in our Whole Life Meal Plan. This simple green chili turkey burger provides lots of flavor and moisture to satisfy your burger cravings, while also providing an extra serving of fiber!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Mexican
Servings 8 burgers


  • ½ Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or cooking spray
  • 15-ounce can low-sodium white beans, drained (~1 ½ cups)
  • 1 pound 99% lean ground turkey
  • 4-ounce can diced green chiles, drained
  • ½ cup Panko bread crumbs (whole grain suggested)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup finely diced red onion
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced (~1 teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Dash pepper
  • 8 whole grain hamburger buns, lightly toasted


  • Preheat oven to 425ºF. Lightly brush a baking sheet with oil.
  • Place drained beans in a large mixing bowl and lightly mash.
  • Add turkey, chiles, crumbs, cilantro, onion, egg, garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Mix until just combined.
  • Create 8 patties with your hands and place on the pan, spaced at least 1” apart.
  • Cook 10-12 minutes or until cooked through to 165ºF. Serve on toasted buns with toppings to YOUR taste. Enjoy!


You can also cook these burgers on the stovetop. Heat a skillet over medium. Add oil to the pan. Once the oil is shimmering, add the patties. Cook 4-5 minutes per side. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness (165ºF). 
Toppings to YOUR taste
  • Sliced tomato
  • Lettuce or leafy greens
  • Sliced pepper jack cheese
  • Pickled jalapeños
  • Sliced or smashed avocado
  • Ketchup or salsa
Keyword Green Chili Turkey Burger

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Lauren Sawyer

    You know it’s a keeper when your kids say “this burger is out of this world”. Plus it’s super yummy for the adults. All around winner.

    1. Lexi Cole, RD, CCMS

      We love to hear that!! Great job training the next generation of super tasters!

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