How to Cook Turkey Burgers in the Air Fryer (Perfectly!)

Learn how to cook turkey burgers in the air fryer (fresh or frozen turkey burgers work!) and get ready to sink your teeth into the juiciest turkey burger you’ve ever tasted in under 10 minutes.

Two ground turkey burgers on a white plate. The burgers are layered with air-fried turkey patties, lettuce, mayo, and burger buns.

If you’re just getting started with air frying, don’t miss Air Fryer 101: How to Choose and Use an Air Fryer to learn all you need to know to get air frying!

Cooking turkey burgers in an air fryer is fast, easy, and gives great results. Here’s why it works so well.

  • Juicy: Air fryers circulate hot air around the food. This gives that desired crispy outer layer. Inside stays moist and tender. It’s the perfect combo for a burger.
  • Quick: Turkey burgers in an air fryer cook quicker than traditional methods. You save time without sacrificing flavor. It’s a win-win.
  • Healthy: Fat drips away, making air fryer turkey burgers a bit healthier, too. Less oil means fewer calories.

Don’t forget to let them rest for a few minutes before serving. This step locks in the juices. You’ll notice the difference.

I’ve been using my air fryer for turkey burgers a lot. I love the convenience and the taste. Give it a try. You might never go back to the old ways.

Turkey or chicken burger on a bun.

How Long to Cook Turkey Burgers in Air Fryer: The Short Answer

Cook fresh turkey burgers in the air fryer at 375°F for 8-10 minutes, flipping halfway through.

For frozen turkey burgers, cook at the same temperature for 15-17 minutes, also flipping halfway.

Read on to get all of the secrets to perfect juiciness, even cooking and knowing doneness.

How to Cook Turkey Burgers in the Air Fryer: Easy Step-By-Step Guide

I’ll share my go-to juicy turkey burger that I make in the air fryer all the time, but in case you’re looking for quick answers about store-bought turkey burgers, here is the short-and-sweet tips for cooking pre-made turkey burgers in an air fryer.

How to Air Fry Fresh Turkey Burgers

Prepare Your Air Fryer

  • Preheat your air fryer to 375°F.
  • Ensure it’s fully heated before adding the burgers.

Cooking the Turkey Burgers

  • Spray the bottom or the air fryer basket with nonstick spray or line with parchment paper (only do this right before you add the burgers.)
  • Place prepared turkey burgers in the basket.
  • Arrange burgers in a single layer for even cooking. If you don’t do this, parts of the burger not exposed directly to the heat may end up overcooked.
  • Cook for 6 minutes.
  • This initial time helps form a crust.

Flipping and Finishing

  • Flip each burger after 6 minutes.
  • Use tongs or a spatula for safety.
  • Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  • Check for an internal temperature of 165°F.

Resting Before Serving

  • Let burgers rest for a few minutes after cooking.
  • This step locks in the juices.

Repeat for Remaining Batches

  • Cook in batches if necessary.
  • Ensure each batch is cooked in a single layer.
Air fryer basket with 3 uncooked turkey burgers on the bottom. The air fryer is set to 375°F. The instruction says to cook in batches in a single layer for 6 minutes and flip the burgers and cook for another 2-3 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 165°F. The burger patties are then placed over burger buns with mayo and lettuce.

How Do You Air Fry Frozen Turkey Patties?

If cooking store-bought frozen turkey burgers, here’s what you do differently: lower the air fryer temperature to 350ºF and expect to add up to 6 minutes more to the cooking time. Patties vary in thickness, so using a thermometer to confirm doneness for food safety is key. 

Here’s the step-by-step:

  • Start from Frozen: No need to thaw; cook them straight from the freezer.
  • Decrease Air Fryer Cooking Temperature: lower the air fryer temperature to 350ºF so that the outside doesn’t overcook before the inside is done.
  • Adjust Cooking Time: Increase the initial cooking time to 10 minutes before flipping, then cook for an additional 5-7 minutes. This accounts for the burgers starting frozen.
  • Check Temperature: Ensure the internal temperature reaches 165°F for safe consumption.

That’s it. Just a few tweaks and you’re set to enjoy delicious, perfectly cooked turkey burgers from frozen.

How Do You Know When A Turkey Burger Is Done?

When probed with a meat thermometer, you’ll know when a turkey burger is done with the internal temperature of the patty reaching 165°F (74°C).

To check the temperature, insert the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the burger, ensuring it’s not touching the pan. Wait for a few seconds until the temperature reading stabilizes. 

The color of the meat or juices alone is not a reliable indicator of doneness. 

What Color Should A Turkey Burger Be When Cooked?

When a turkey burger is fully cooked, the color should be an even light brown or tan throughout the entire burger. 

The center of the burger should not be pink or red but instead should be opaque with no visible pinkness.

By using a meat thermometer, you can ensure that your turkey burger is safe to eat and cooked to the appropriate temperature, regardless of the color of the meat.

My Favorite Air Fryer Turkey Burger Recipe

Made with just a handful of ingredients including ground turkey, fresh breadcrumbs, and minced onion, these burgers are a healthier twist on a classic favorite. With a touch of cayenne pepper and ground black pepper, and a couple of secret ingredients for added moisture, these turkey burgers are sure to satisfy your cravings. Here’s why you’ll love this recipe:

  • Juicy and moist: Turkey is leaner than beef, so homemade turkey burger recipes are known for being dry. I’ve got the secrets for ensuring your turkey burgers are forever juicy.
  • Loaded with flavor: herbs, cayenne, garlic, and mayo packed in many yummy flavors.
  • Serious leftover/make-ahead potential: make a large batch and freeze patties to have them ready to go.
  • Easy to make: quick and straightforward to put together.
  • Family-friendly: these burgers will be loved by everyone at your table.

They are so deliciously moist and packed with flavor. Just like my favorite Turkey Meatloaf recipe.

Gather Your Ingredients to Make Turkey Burgers in the Air Fryer

Ingredients for turkey burgers laid out on a white kitchen countertop, including ground turkey, slices onions, mayo, salt, pepper and panko breadcrumbs.
  • Fresh or Panko breadcrumbs. My secret weapons are breadcrumbs soaked in milk. The crumbs retain a considerable amount of liquid that meat alone cannot.
  • Milk. Whatever milk you usually use – dairy or plant-based is both excellent in this recipe.
  • Olive oil. You can also use a neutral-tasting oil like avocado.
  • Onion. Gives great texture and taste to the meat.
  • Coarse salt. You can also use Himalayan or whatever salt you have in the cupboard.
  • Garlic. Minced garlic is a stand-out savory and richness enhancer in this recipe.
  • Mayo.  Mayo adds a little additional fat and emulsifies, meaning the fat can stay suspended in the liquids. This provides extra insurance against a dry turkey burger.
  • Parsley. Fresh or dried gives a lightness and freshness to these burgers.
  • Cayenne pepper.Ground turkey is sweeter than ground beef, and I love a little bit of cayenne to add a little pop of flavor, but you can leave it out.
  • Ground black pepper. For added heat and balance, it’s totally optional, of course.
  • Egg. The key binding ingredient in the patty.
  • Ground turkey. Choose a good quality lean ground turkey. Turkey carries flavors and seasonings beautifully. You can also make this recipe with ground chicken. 

How To Make the Best Air Fryer Turkey Burger Recipe

Large bowl with breadcrumbs and milk. A saucepan with heated oil on the stovetop and chopped onions are cooked until softened.
  1. First, stir together breadcrumbs and milk in a large bowl; let stand to absorb
  2. Next, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, then cook onion with ¼ tsp salt until softened, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute more. Cool for a few minutes, then scrape into breadcrumb mixture.
Cooked onion is scraped into breadcrumb mixture. Mayo is stirred into the breadcrumb mixture, along with parsley, remaining salt, pepper, and cayenne.
  1. Stir mayo into the breadcrumb mixture, along with parsley, remaining salt, pepper, and cayenne (if using). 
  2. When the mixture is cool to the touch, stir in the egg and then the ground turkey. Use your hands to gently but thoroughly work the mixture together—form 5 burger patties.
  3. Cook the turkey burgers in batches in a single layer in the air fryer basket at 375ºF for 6 minutes. Flip burgers and cook for 2-3 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 165ºF. You’ll need to do two batches. Let burgers rest for a few minutes before serving.
Mixing ground turkey with egg in a bowl to make burger patties.

What To Serve With Air Fryer Turkey Burgers

Toppings:

Let guests build their turkey burgers up on toasted buns with these topping ideas:

  • Sliced tomato
  • Sliced avocado
  • Red onion slices
  • Pickles
  • Crisp lettuce leaves
  • Shredded red cabbage

Spreads:

Slather the buns with these yummy sauces:

Strawberry Goat cheese salad with spinach.

Sides:

To complete a bbq burger theme, whip these up and serve them with:

Make Ahead Instructions

Shape the turkey burger mixture into patties and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Put the baking sheet in the freezer and freeze the patties for about an hour or until they are solid.

Once the patties are frozen, transfer them to a freezer-safe container or freezer bag.

Storage Instructions

Allow the cooked turkey burgers to cool down to room temperature, and then place them in an airtight container or wrap them tightly with plastic wrap.

Store the turkey burgers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can freeze them if you want to store them for longer.

Place the turkey burgers in an airtight container or freezer bag and freeze them for up to 3 months.

Air Fryer Turkey Burger Variations

  • Greek Turkey Burgers. Add crumbled feta cheese, chopped kalamata olives, chopped fresh parsley, and dried oregano to the turkey burger mixture. Serve with tzatziki sauce.
  • Spicy Turkey Burgers. Mix the burger mixture in chopped jalapeños, green onions, cumin, and chili powder. Serve with guacamole.
  • BBQ Turkey Burgers. Add BBQ sauce and chopped red onion to the turkey burger mixture. Serve with more BBQ sauce and sliced pickles.
  • Italian Turkey Burgers. Sprinkle in a little Parmesan cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, dried basil, and oregano into the burger mixture. Serve with marinara sauce and sliced mozzarella cheese.

Can This Air Fryer Turkey Burger Recipe Be Coated In Breadcrumbs?

Yes, if you want to add a crispy outer layer to the patties, you can brush them with a little beaten egg and coat them in crumbs.

Spray the coating with cooking spray to crisp up the crumbs.

Panko crumbs will give a lovely crunchy coating, but you can also use fresh breadcrumbs.

Air Fryer Turkey Burger FAQs

Can you put frozen turkey burgers in an air fryer?

You can absolutely put and cook frozen turkey burger patties in the air fryer. They will require a little more cooking time.

How long do you air fry frozen turkey burgers?

You’ll need to add a few extra cooking minutes to frozen turkey patties – around 6 extra minutes but start checking their doneness from 10 minutes.

Do you need to flip burgers in an air fryer?

Yes, you do need to flip burger patties when cooking turkey (or beef burgers, etc) burgers in an air fryer to ensure an even cook.

What temperature should a turkey burger be?

Turkey burgers should have an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) when they are ready.

Can you cook turkey patties in air fryer?

Yes, you can cook turkey patties in an air fryer successfully.

Is it OK if a turkey burger is a little pink?

No, your turkey burger should be pale brown or tan in color, not pink or red.

Pro Tips for Juicy Turkey Burgers in the Air Fryer

  • Achieving Juiciness: Avoid overcooking by adhering to recommended cooking times. A light coat of oil or spray on the burgers before cooking helps retain moisture.
  • Ensuring Even Cooking: For even cooking, place burgers in a single layer. This promotes air circulation. Cook in batches to prevent overcrowding.
  • Checking for Doneness: Use a meat thermometer to ensure burgers reach 165°F internally. This guarantees safety and juiciness.
  • Resting Burgers: After cooking, let burgers rest for a few minutes. This step allows juices to redistribute, enhancing flavor and texture.

More Easy Air Fryer Recipes to Try

Air Fryer Frozen Salmon.

Also, if you love ground turkey, don’t miss the 37+ Best Healthy Ground Turkey Recipes on the internet.

Air Fryer Turkey Burgers

Juicy Air Fryer Turkey Burgers Recipe

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 9 minutes
Servings 5
Dinner, Lunch
American
Keyword Ground Turkey Burgers, Homemade Turkey Burgers, Juicy Air Fryer Turkey Burgers, Thanksgiving Burger

Ingredients
 
 

  • ½ cup fresh or panko breadcrumbs
  • 4 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup minced onion ¼ of a large yellow onion
  • 1 ¼ tsp coarse salt
  • 1 ½ tsp minced garlic
  • 3 tbsp mayo
  • 1 tbsp minced fresh parsley or 1 tsp dried
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ¾ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 lb ground turkey

Instructions
 

  • In a large bowl, stir together breadcrumbs and milk; let stand to absorb.
  • Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, then cook onion with ¼ tsp salt until softened, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute more. Cool for a few minutes, then scrape into breadcrumb mixture.
  • Stir mayo into the breadcrumb mixture, along with parsley, remaining salt, pepper and cayenne (if using).
  • When mixture is cool to the touch, stir in the egg then the ground turkey. Use your hands to gently but thoroughly work the mixture together. Form 5 burger patties.
  • Air fry the turkey burgers in batches in a single layer at 375ºF for 6 minutes. Flip burgers and continue cooking 2-3 minutes, until internal temperature reaches 165ºF. You’ll need to do two batches. Let burgers rest for a few minutes before serving.

Video

Notes

  • Cook the garlic until it is just fragrant; don’t allow it to burn and turn bitter.
  • The egg should be added in once the mixture has cooled down.
  • Handle the mixture gently and lightly but ensure the ingredients mix together thoroughly.
  • The patties will need to be flipped during their cooking process.

Nutrition

Calories: 243kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 24gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0.04gCholesterol: 88mgSodium: 745mgPotassium: 373mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 206IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 46mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Ground Turkey Burgers, Homemade Turkey Burgers, Juicy Air Fryer Turkey Burgers, Thanksgiving Burger

Last Updated on February 27, 2024 by Jennifer Pallian BSc, RD

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Cathleen
Cathleen
8 months ago

5 stars
I have been living off of recipes in the air fryer, and this one might be one of my new favourites! Thank you so much for sharing 🙂

Dee
Dee
8 months ago

5 stars
These burgers were so good and juicy. I never even thought about making them in an air fryer.

Dennis
Dennis
8 months ago

5 stars
These were, without a doubt the. best turkey burgers I ever made! The air fryer kept them moist and juicy!

Valentina Ottah
8 months ago

5 stars
This looks delicious! I’m such a huge fan of burgers so I‘ll definitely be be trying out this recipe. Thanks for sharing

Madelyn
Madelyn
8 months ago

Delicious recipe! I can’t find a premade turkey burger that I like much, and these have a lot of flavor. So much easier in the air fryer than grilling too.

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