Spicy Jalapeno Chicken Burgers

One of my go-to dinners is a grilled BBQ patty, mostly because it’s quick, easy and pretty damn tasty when cooked right.  Burger PattyWhen I gave up bread I started to get pretty creative with my burgers, loading them up with all sorts of healthy goodies.  I’ve been doing it so long now that I don’t really miss the bun.  Depending on my mood I’ll either load it up with veggies – sautéed spinach, mushrooms, onions, even zucchini/squash, bell peppers.  Or, I’ll go the bacon, fried egg, avocado route.  Basically, I look in my fridge to see what I have and then go from there.  During the hot summer months, topping your burger with a few pieces of grilled fruit is also a nice option to throw in the mix.  Partner pear and blue cheese, pineapple with pepper jack or even Fuji apple and cheddar.  You really can’t go wrong with a loaded burger. Because my husband is a beef patty kind of guy, I usually stick to ground beef, but occasionally i’ll throw a turkey or chicken patty in the mix.  When on a flexible eating program, a loaded beef patty can start to use up your fat grams real quick, so ground turkey and chicken are great alternatives because they are very lean and you can top them with all the extra fatty goodies you want, depending what fits your day’s macros.  Since these meats are so lean though, you have to mix in some good ingredients and spices to make them a little more appealing. By now we all know that I have a serious tendency to lean toward Mexican flavors, but you can easily go in an Asian direction with a chicken or turkey burger.  I’ll come up with a recipe for one sometime soon… For Father’s Day I made regular beef patties for the men and a spicy jalapeno chicken patty for the ladies.  When I went back for an additional half a chicken burger there were none left because the boys realized they were just as good.  Ground chicken is very loose when forming patties, so be extra careful when grilling.  Make sure to hit your grill with non-stick spray before you place them on the grill so they don’t stick or sink through the grate.  If you’re flying solo for the night, you can easily throw a patty or two on a stove-top grill pan and make them indoors to make your life easy. You can top these burgers with anything you like.  Obviously since I went the Mexican route so I placed it on a thick slice of heirloom tomato and topped it with a grilled corn guacamole I made and sprinkled some finely chopped red onion.

For those on a flexible eating program, the macros for one 6 oz. chicken  burger (patty and ingredients only) are:

182 Calories – 3C / 6F / 29P

Spicy Jalapeno Chicken Burgers with Grilled Corn Guacamole

 Burger Patty Ingredients:

2 lbs Ground Chicken Thigh

1/2 Small White Onion

1/2 cup Cilantro

1 Jalapeno – Seeded

2 Garlic Cloves

Juice of 1 lime

2 tsp Paprika

2 tsp Cumin

Salt and Pepper to Taste

Guacamole Ingredients:

3 Ripe Avocados

3/4 Grilled Corn Kernels from the Cob

Salt and Pepper to Taste

Directions:

For the Chicken Patties:  Place the ground chicken thigh meat in a large mixing bowl and season with the lime juice, paprika,Chicken Patties cumin, salt and pepper and hand mix until spices are spread throughout.  Set aside.

In a food processor, place the onion, cilantro, seeded jalapeno and garlic cloves and pulse until all ingredients are finely chopped.

Add the chopped mixture to the ground chicken bowl and work with your hands until all ingredients are spread evenly throughout.

Form chicken mixture into 6 oz patties and lay on a baking sheet lined with wax paper so they don’t stick.

Grill the patties on a gas or charcoal grill for approximately 4-5 minutes on each side or until just cooked through.  Be careful not to leave on the grill too long or the patties will dry out.

 

GuacFor the Grilled Corn Guacamole:  Mash 3 whole avocados with a fork or whisk in a bowl, leaving the avocados very chunky.  Add 1-2 tsp of salt and about 1/2-1 tsp of pepper to the avocados and stir lightly.  Season your guacamole to your liking.  If you like your guac on the salty side, go with 2+ tsp of salt.  Add 3/4 cup of grilled corn (I had leftover grilled corn on the cob from a previous dinner that week so mine was actual grilled.)  The flavor of actual grilled corn is best, however, if you do not have any, cooked frozen corn will do.  Mix until corn is incorporated evenly.

If you over mash/mix your guacamole to start it will end up looking kind of flat after you mix in the rest of the ingredients.  Keep a light hand when working with the avocado.

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