Just 4 ingredients - lean Mexican chorizo, lean ground meat, egg, cotija - combine to make these Healthy Mexican Chorizo Burgers. Finished with your choice of toppings... It's a fiesta in your mouth!
👩🏻🍳 Tamara Talks - Recipe Inspiration
Several years ago, I did a healthy Mexican-inspired turkey burger that is delicious but requires a bit of time and a lot more ingredients. After publishing my recipe for lean homemade chorizo, it occurred to me it adds so much flavor to so many dishes - seafood stew, breakfast tacos, stuffed mushrooms, etc. - why not use it in a healthy burger recipe?
Mexican chorizo (not to be confused with Spanish chorizo) contains some of my favorite seasonings - red chile powder, annatto (aka achiote), cumin, cinnamon, and more. All this flavor is packed into one bold sausage mixture, making it a perfect addition to a burger patty that might otherwise be bland!
On photo day, I used very lean ground pork, and I was extremely pleased with both the texture and the flavor. I have also used ground turkey, but because my chorizo is so lean, I reach for the 85% lean ground turkey rather than the super lean ground turkey breast. Ground beef or ground chicken are fine as well. Keep it "healthy" by choosing lean ground meat.
🐖 Why do I love Mexican chorizo?
As I mentioned above, Mexican chorizo is packed with flavorful spices. That makes it a time saver. All the flavor is already there - garlic, spices, chiles. I love the fact that I can add a bit of chorizo, and don't need anything else to season it!
📋 Ingredients You'll Need
Here is a quick look at the ingredients in the recipe – it’s handy to use at the grocery store or as a summary of what you need. Skip to the recipe for quantities.
- lean chorizo - My first choice is my homemade chorizo. I make it in 2 pound batches, and freeze in half-pound zip bags. This recipes requires 8 ounces, so it's ideal! Alternatively, you can find good quality lean chorizo in many large supermarkets. Sprouts and HEB (Texas chain) both have it. Avoid the tubes of orange fat with salivary glands!
- ground meat - I love lean ground pork in these burgers, but any ground meat will work... Just keep it lean! As I mentioned earlier, a little fat is good. I use 85% lean ground turkey rather than the 93% lean turkey breast.
- cotija cheese - I buy aged cotija and always have it in my refrigerator. I grate it. You can also use the pre-grated cotija. Feta is a decent substitute.
🍅 Toppings Suggestions
- quick pickled red onions - This is technically a "Peruvian" salsa, but it's nearly identical to Mexican quick pickled onions. Substitute jalapeño or Fresno chiles for rocoto.
- blood orange roasted garlic aioli - Aioli take some skill and time, but if you're a "from scratch" cook like I am, take a look at the aioli in my Mexican turkey burgers. You can shortcut the process by adding blood orange juice and zest along with mashed roasted garlic to good quality mayonnaise.
- cilantro lime aioli - Try this cilantro lime aioli from Amazon, or this cheater aioli recipe.
- mashed avocado or guacamole - I take a ripe avocado, squeeze half a lime, mash with a fork, and season with sea salt and fresh ground pepper.
- spicy homemade ketchup - This homemade ketchup is an old recipe that needs updating, but it's delicious, and great on these burgers.
- chamoy sauce - My homemade chamoy is fantastic drizzled on burgers! It's savory, slightly sweet heat pairs beautifully with this chorizo burger, and my bison burgers.
- Make the burger mixture - Combine chorizo, ground meat, egg, and cotija in a prep bowl. Mix thoroughly. I find my hands work best, but if you're squeamish, use a flexible spatula.
- Prepare the toppings - If you're doing pickled onions and/or aioli, you may want to start them first. Slice tomatoes, mash avocados, and prepare lettuce. If you have a helper, let your helper grill the rolls/buns.
- Cook the chorizo burgers - Heat a griddle to medium-high. If it's not a good non-stick surface, spray it with cooking spray. These burgers are lean, and will stick. Cook the patties on one side until medium brown (about 3-4 minutes). Turn them, and repeat.
- Serve - Place patty on top of bread smeared with mashed avocado (or other condiment), top with lettuce, onion, tomatoes, and follow with the bread spread with more mashed avocado, aioli, or another condiment. Enjoy!
💭 Tips and FAQ
What kind of ground meat is best to use? We like ground pork the best, but turkey, chicken, even beef, elk, or bison are great too! I recommend 85% lean on the turkey for better flavor, but the choice is yours.
Double or even triple the recipe, make patties, and stack them between layers of waxed paper for another meal or two. If you wrap it airtight, it will store in the freezer 3 to 4 months. Otherwise, 1 month is maximum for good flavor and texture.
Is Mexican chorizo healthy? Yes, with one qualification. Read the ingredients list! You want to see meat, garlic, spices, and chile. You DO NOT want to see additives, preservatives, and weird animal parts like salivary glands. The chorizo that comes in a tray and has the consistency of ground beef or pork is usually lean. I also get chicken chorizo from San Manuel that is super lean and 100% natural.
I never make these healthy Mexican chorizo burgers the same way 2 times in a row. I almost always have the ingredients for the burger patties on hand. Sometimes I have rolls/buns, and sometimes, I pull out my bread machine and make some. The quick pickled red onions are so easy, they're a must. Avocadoes are a must (IMHO). The rest is up to you! I hope you'll give these delicious burgers a try.