Use up the bounty of summer in these moist, flavorful and healthy Zucchini Chicken Burgers!
Ready in 25 minutes
Here’s a confession for you guys: I’ve never, in my life, been able to grow zucchini. I know a lot of you see me as some sort of gardening guru (which is sweet, but kinda misguided, because I’m learning as I go along, too!), but I am worthless when it comes to zucchini. It’s kinda hilarious, because zucchini are supposed to be one of the easiest and most prolific plants you can grow in the garden. Not my garden. Zucchini hate me.
It’s really quite laughable actually. There is a whole holiday devoted to people pawning off their excess zucchini on unsuspecting neighbors because the plant is supposed to be so prolific—and I am lucky if I can even get a zucchini plant to the bloom stage. I think I’m zucchini cursed.
My zucchini issues span the entire gamut of gardening problems. I’ve had bugs decimate my plants. I’ve had diseases take over. I’ve had varmints come in and eat my plants—leaves, stalks, fruit, and all. And, this year, I couldn’t even get them to germinate. Eight planted, and only one came up. And they are fresh seeds! I think a raccoon actually got in the garden and dug up the seeds to eat (seriously, you couldn’t find anything else to eat? you had to resort to digging up zucchini seeds?).
Alas, I will keep trying, you know why? Because I flippin’ love zucchini. Love it. Love it. Love it. I love the taste. I love how versatile it is (savory? sweet? whatever!). I even love cutting into it—so smooth and easy. One of these days I will conquer growing zucchini. But for now, I have to get my zucchini fix from my neighbors (who, ahem, are welcome to leave squash on my porch anytime).
This here zucchini came from a farm stand down the road, and I knew exactly where it was headed—into zucchini chicken burgers. I’ve had this idea for a few months now for a zucchini-loaded burger. Zucchini is tasty, but it is also an incredible way to add moisture to foods. That’s why it works so well in zucchini bread!
I had this idea that you could maybe mix shredded zucchini with a leaner meat (like ground chicken or ground turkey breast) to add back in some moisture—but still keep the burger nice and light. And, oh my, I was so right. It’s juicy, flavorful, and super tasty, but still light and healthy. Cha-ching!
I topped my burgers with a lemon-feta mayo, some homegrown tomato slices, and a big ole piece of red onion (also from the garden). You can feel free to dress your burgs however makes you happy, but I highly recommend trying out the mayo—I’ve included the recipe below—it’s kinda insane. Enjoy.
- 1 medium zucchini, shredded finely
- 1 small onion, shredded finely
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1 egg
- 1 cup whole wheat panko breadcrumbs (recommended: Ian's)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- Buns and other burger toppings (onions, cheese, tomatoes, pickles, etc.)
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons crumbled feta
- Juice and zest of one lemon
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- To prepare the burgers, preheat grill or grill pan over medium-high heat.
- Squeeze the shredded zucchini in small handfuls to release much of the water.
- In a large bowl, combine the zucchini, onion, ground chicken, egg, breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper using clean hands. Form the mixture into four patties.
- Grill the patties on the preheated grill or grill pan for 6-7 minutes, then flip, and grill an additional 3-4 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the burgers reads 160°F.
- While the burgers are cooking, mix together all the mayo ingredients.
- Place the burgers on buns and top with mayo, plus other desired toppings. Enjoy!