This teriyaki chicken burger has it all - sweet and tangy with the perfect texture! With a quick homemade teriyaki sauce that adds a ton of flavor, I never knew chicken burgers could taste this good.
Ground Chicken Teriyaki Burgers
If you search for "teriyaki chicken burgers" you'll find lots of recipes that are actually "grilled chicken sandwiches". This recipe is a legit chicken burger with ground meat!
Normally I find ground chicken burger recipes to be kind of tough and rubbery. Chicken just doesn't have the same fat content as beef, so when you grill them, they can get a bit tough.
One way around this is to use ground chicken thighs, which have a higher fat content and tend to be more flavorful. That's really where the panko and egg come in here. It's like creating a massive, flavorful meatball. This is how you get a really tender burger texture that's similar to ground beef.
What's great about this recipe is it can cater to a lot of different dietary requirements - it's lower sodium compared to other teriyaki burgers, can be gluten free, and is dairy free. Use a lettuce wrap for a lower carb alternative!
Here are some tips for choosing the best main ingredients for these teriyaki chicken burgers.
- Ground chicken - I highly recommend using ground chicken thighs if you can find them. Sometimes the butcher will grind them for you and other times they're not super accommodating based on "sanitation protocols", no matter how desperately you plead. I find Whole Foods to be my best bet for this. Ground chicken breast will work in a pinch. Make sure you're purchasing 100% ground chicken without additives, broth, or flavorings.
- Coconut aminos - Coconut aminos offers a sweeter flavor than soy sauce, which allows us to cut back on the added sugar in these chicken burgers. They are also more compatible with a migraine diet than soy sauce or tamari, as well as lower sodium.
- Toasted sesame oil - Provides a deeper savory flavor. This can be found with other types of oil or in the ethnic food section.
- Brown sugar - This adds just a hint of sweetness for the teriyaki flavor, but isn't overpowering. This can also be substituted with honey.
- Panko - Any type of panko will work for this recipe, and it's necessary to create a more tender texture, as well as hold the mixture together.
- Sriracha - Underwood Ranches is my favorite brand. I recommend purchasing one without added sulfites.
- Buns - I love Martin's Potato Buns which are usually found at Target, but feel free to choose a favorite or go with whole wheat.
- Cilantro - While cilantro definitely adds a great flavor without being overpowering, if you hate cilantro, just omit it from the recipe.
- Mayonnaise - I either like to use homemade egg free mayo or a good store-bought brand like Sir Kensingtons.
- Mango - I'll cover more under toppings, but I prefer this so much more than pineapple!
Mixed with garlic, ginger, toasted sesame oil, and a touch of sriracha, this homemade teriyaki sauce is super flavorful. When it gets combined with the meat and grilled, you'll really love the umami flavor it has.
Step by Step Process
Step 1: Make the mixture. In a large bowl combine the ground chicken, panko, green onion, cilantro, grated ginger and garlic, coconut aminos, toasted sesame oil, sugar, and sriracha. Stir with your hands or a spoon to fully combine.
Step 2: Form the patties. Section off the ground chicken mixture into 4 even compartments and use your hands to form each one into a burger patty. Cover and chill these for at least 30 minutes, up to several hours.
Step 3: Prepare the grill. Preheat a grill over medium high heat till it reaches a temperature of 400 degrees F. Turn the heat down to carefully oil the grill grate (a paper towel and tongs or brush with oil will work), then turn the heat up and place the chicken burgers onto the grill grates. Cook for about 4-5 minutes, until firmed up on one side and grill marks have formed. Flip and cook another 4-5 minutes until an internal temperature of 165 degrees F is reached. I highly recommend using a meat thermometer for this.
Step 4: Make the burgers. Quickly mix together mayonnaise and sriracha for a homemade spicy mayo and place on burger buns. Add the teriyaki chicken burger patties and favorite toppings. Serve warm!
Tips for Grilling
The times I've recipe tested these teriyaki chicken burgers, I've found that they can be a little tough to grill. Here are a few of my favorite tips to make things easier.
- Chill the burgers for at least 30 minutes after you form them to help them stay together.
- Make sure your grill grate is properly oiled before grilling.
Grilling chicken burgers are not the same as grilling beef - where pink is ok! Chicken needs to be cooked through and this means it would register an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This usually takes about 4-5 minutes. You will need to closely monitor them with a meat thermometer, especially the first time you make these.
Can I Make Chicken Burgers Without a Grill?
If grilling is too much for you or you don't own one, these teriyaki chicken burgers can also be pan-seared as well. The same rules apply - make sure they're cooked through. These will take a little longer over medium high heat - about 6 minutes on the first side and 4-5 on the flip side.
Toppings for Teriyaki Chicken Burgers
Most recipes will have you do pineapple, but not only is this a food to eliminate, but also I feel like the sweetness overpowers the chicken burger. You didn't come here for a pineapple sandwich!
My favorite topping is fresh mango slices, which are sweet enough to compliment the teriyaki flavors without being overpowering. Here are a few additional ideas:
- Butter lettuce
- Sliced green onions
- Spicy mayo (recipe below)
- Coconut flakes
To be honest, this is kind of a tough dish to pair. My favorite so far has been with a simple salad and potato chips. Potato chips basically go with any burger! But here are a few of my favorites.
If you want to meal prep these, I recommend freezing them after they've been grilled. They reheat well! If you plan to eat these quickly, I recommend storing an air tight container up to 3 days in the fridge.
To freeze: Place each cooked chicken patty between wax paper and stack in a freezer bag or airtight container. Store for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator, and quickly pan sear on both sides or microwave in 20 second intervals till warmed through.
More Grilling Recipes
Teriyaki Chicken Burgers
- 1 pound ground chicken
- ½ cup panko
- 3 scallions, chopped
- 1 large egg, beaten
- ¼ cup cilantro
- 1 ½ tablespoons grated fresh ginger
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 ½ tablespoons coconut aminos
- 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons sriracha
- kosher salt to taste
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 2-3 teaspoons sriracha
- 4 burger buns
- butter lettuce
- 1 large mango, thinly sliced
- In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken with panko, scallions, beaten egg, chopped cilantro, ginger, garlic, coconut aminos, sugar, sesame oil, sriracha and a pinch of salt (¼-1/2 teaspoon). Mix with hands till fully (and evenly) combined and form into 4 patties. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, make the spicy mayo by combining the mayo with the sriracha sauce.
- Prepare, clean, and oil grill grates and heat to medium-high. Grill for 4-5 minutes on one side, then flip and grill another 4-5 minutes until fully cooked through (165 degrees F).
- Toast buns (if you like them that way) and spread with spicy mayo, top with butter lettuce, and add mango.
- If grilling is too much for you or you don't own one, these can also be pan-seared as well. The same rules apply - make sure they're cooked through. These will take a little longer over medium high heat - about 6 minutes on the first side and 4-5 on the flip side.
- For gluten free, use a favorite gluten free bun or wrap this in butter lettuce. If you do find GF buns, you can use gluten free panko like Jeff's Creations or Aleia brand (both found on amazon)