A copy cat recipe for Island’s Kilauea burger, this Spicy Jalapeno Black Pepper Turkey Burger is topped with spicy chipotle mayo, lettuce, tomato, and sliced jalapenos. It’s a delicious burger recipe for any time of the year, not just a summer barbecue.
Table of contents
The inspiration for this spicy jalapeno black pepper turkey burgers came from a trip to Islands Restaurant for a school fundraiser. I got the Kilauea burger and both my husband and I loved it! I’ve been working on creating a version for us to eat at home ever since.
This turkey burger is made without breadcrumbs, just a bit of salt, chopped jalapenos, and lots of coarse grind peppercorns.
- ground turkey
- hamburger buns
- black pepper
- hot sauce, we like El Yucateco brand
What to serve these with?
How to make this
- In a bowl, gently mix together the hamburger ingredients. Divide the meat into 4 and shape into patties.
- Add coarsely ground black pepper to both sides of each burger. Add more for a spicier burger.
- Heat a pan over medium heat with a little bit of oil to keep the turkey burgers from sticking to the pan. I prefer to cook turkey burgers on a griddle or in a cast iron pan on the stove top since they are easier to flip.
- Cook until cooked through. See top tips section below.
- Meanwhile, combine the spicy mayo ingredients and spread some over each half of the hamburger buns.
- Add the cooked turkey burger, lettuce, tomato, and more jalapenos.
Because the turkey burgers are made with poultry they need to be cooked completely. Use a meat thermometer to check the interior of the turkey burger has reached 165°F.
A good meat thermometer will always be your friend when cooking meats to the perfect temperature. I use my Thermoworks thermopen all the time to make sure I don’t overcook or under cook my meat.
Worried about the spiciness?
My kids ate these turkey burgers too although without the spicy mayo spread. The turkey burgers aren’t terribly spicy all on their own which is nice if you are sensitive to spice.
You can decrease the amount of heat from the jalapenos by removing the seeds before adding them to the patty mix. An easy trick is to roll the jalapenos on the cutting board before cutting. Then cut the tops off and shake the seeds out! Easy peasy!
The spicy mayo spread is just good hot sauce mixed with mayo. I used El Yucateco hot sauce which is really spicy. I only used a little bit which made it plenty spicy but if you were using a variety that is less spicy you might need more.
Some other hot sauce varieties that have more flavor than heat are Tabasco and Cholula.
Want more kick?
If you really wanted to kick it up a notch add more jalapenos and keep the seeds in! I would also add a little bit of hot sauce to the burgers as well.
If you are using the El Yucateco hot sauce I would add no more than 1 Tablespoon. That stuff has some intense heat to it!
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For the Burger Patty
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 4 jalapenos chopped
- 1 Tbsp coarse grind pepper
For the Spicy Mayo
- 1 tsp El Yucateco hot sauce
- 1/2 cup mayo
- 4 leaves lettuce
- 3 jalapenos sliced
- 1 heirloom tomato sliced
- 4 whole wheat hamburger buns
- In a bowl, combine the ground turkey, chopped jalapenos, and coarse grind pepper. Gently mix and form into four patties.
- Heat a pan over medium heat on the stove top. Cook for 5 minutes on each side. Check with a meat thermometer for an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
- For the spicy mayo spread, in a small bowl combine the mayo and Mexican hot sauce.
- Spread spicy mayo on the bun, add burger, and top with lettuce, tomato, and sliced jalapenos.