I am a ground turkey superfan. I use it instead of ground beef often (oh, but I also use ground beef very often…and pork…and lamb…). Ground turkey is a go-to staple in my fridge, and I always have a pound or two stashed in the freezer. It defrosts quickly, it has a very palatable fat content, and if you buy the 93/7% then you will enjoy a rich flavor and juiciness that you might not expect from ground turkey.
Is Ground Turkey Better for You Than Ground Beef?
I have to start by saying that ground beef is an American culinary staple, and a staple in my house. But having said that you can save a bit of fat and calories with ground turkey.
But, the difference is more notable if you opt for the lean, 99% fat free, white meat version of ground turkey, which I do use sometimes, but not that often. Also, it definitely depends on the type of ground beef you are comparing it to: ground beef has a wide variation of fat content.
Types of Ground Turkey
I usually cook with the version labeled 93/7%, not the ultra lean variety, which can have as little as 1% fat. The ultra lean version is best saved for sauces, where there is extra moisture and flavor built in, and use the darker meat blend for most everything else, from meatballs to burgers. I am ok with the extra fat, and I am more than ok with the full flavor and moistness than this slightly higher fat version provides. But your call!
7 Leftover Ground Turkey Recipes
Here are some of the favorite ground turkey recipes I make over and over and over again.
Beautifully seasoned, moist and juicy, this is my favorite burger of all time.
Picadillo is a Latin American dish, similar to hash, popular in various versions in Cuba, the Philippines, Costa Rico, Puerto Rico, and Mexico. It contains ground meat of some sort (usually beef, here turkey!!), and tomatoes, and a whole lot of seasonings and deliciousness.
A fork in the road recipe: Some milder, some more seasoned, everyone happy. And either way, this is a great meatball recipe to have on file.
I could not tally up how many batches of this chili I have made over the years. I think it’s one of the recipes I am most pleased with (sorry for the not so humble brag, but I figured, you’d probably want to know, right?). And while it makes a lot, every time I make it, and my husband wonders loudly and pointedly who will eat all of that chili—it is gone.