15 Beef Burger Alternatives to Serve at Your Next Cookout

Thai Pork Burgers
Photo: Andy Lyons

A burger doesn't have to be made from beef to be delicious. There is a slew of alternative beef burger recipes from our Test Kitchen to please everyone at the table. So whether you're avoiding red meat or trying out a plant-based diet, there's a recipe here for you. Check out these mouthwatering burgers made with ground turkey, chicken, pork, and veggies.

01 of 15

Mini Gyro Burgers with Watermelon-Feta Salad

Mini Gyro Burgers Watermelon-Feta Salad
Blaine Moats

A blend of lamb and turkey, plus plenty of mint and oregano, give this burger alternative a gyro-like taste. During cold weather months, top with fresh greens and crumbled goat cheese. Come summer, don't miss out on the refreshing watermelon relish.

02 of 15

Veggie-Turkey Burgers

veggie-and-turkey burgers with toppings
Andy Lyons

In addition to the lettuce, tomato, and spiralized zucchini on top of these turkey burgers, we blend shredded carrots right into the meat mixture itself. The results are magnificently moist and tender. Cook on a grill pan on the stove or on an outdoor barbecue depending on the season, then finish with a spoonful of peppy curry mustard.

Buy It: Lodge Pre-Seasoned 10.5-Inch Cast Iron Grill Pan ($20, Walmart)

03 of 15

Buffalo Chicken Burgers

Buffalo Chicken Burgers
Greg Luna

No plans for dinner tonight? Wing it with this quick and easy chicken burger recipe. Slathered with buttery wing sauce and topped with a speedy homemade blue cheese dressing, this single-skillet supper features everything you adore about a chicken wing appetizer.

04 of 15

Thai Pork Burgers

Thai Pork Burgers
Andy Lyons

You'd never guess by looking, but we've combined chopped bacon with the ground pork for a savory, salty boost. Aromatic additions like lemongrass and ginger layer on the Asian-inspired flavor to this no-beef burger—as does a sriracha mayo.

05 of 15

Lentil Veggie Burgers

Lentil Veggie Burger
Andy Lyons

To make this high-fiber vegan burger alternative in less than 30 minutes, start with purchased cooked refrigerated lentils. That variety or just-simmered lentils both hold together nicely in the pan-fried patties.

06 of 15

Stuffed Sausage Sliders

Stuffed Sausage Sliders
Scott Little

Cheddar cheese is the decadent stuffing inside this spiced mini pork burger recipe. And since the duo of fresh apples and cheddar are a snacktime staple, shredded apple is inside. A delicious grilled apple-fennel slaw goes on top.

Buy It: OXO Softworks Box Grater ($17, Target)

07 of 15

Turkey Burgers with Peaches and Blueberries

Turkey Burgers Peaches Blueberries
Andy Lyons

This open-faced turkey burger recipe proves that come summer, fruit and meat can go together like peaches and cream. Chopped stone fruit adds moisture to the patties, while a fresh fruit salsa stands in for the second piece of garlic bread.

Test Kitchen Tip: Take another cue from the garden and garnish with fresh mint if you like.

08 of 15

Thai-Style Tuna Burger

Thai-Style Tuna Burger
Andy Lyons

Panko bread crumbs, fresh ginger, green onion, fish sauce, and chili sauce are the essential items that take these fish burgers on a trip to Asia. Since it's centered around canned tuna, this speedy vacation-on-a-plate is affordable to boot.

09 of 15

Air-Fryer Greek Turkey Burgers

Air-Fried Greek Turkey Burgers
Jennifer Causey

Put your trusty air fryer to use with this quick and easy turkey burger recipe. In less than 30 minutes, you'll have a burger alternative that's perfectly seasoned with oregano, crushed red pepper, and garlic.

Buy It: Instant Vortex 6-Quart 4-in-1 Air Fryer Oven ($120, Target)

10 of 15

Rosemary-Brie Chicken Burgers

Rosemary-Brie Chicken Burgers
Karla Conrad

Rosemary and brie get naming rights for this mouthwatering chicken burger recipe, but the cranberries and walnuts stirred into the meat deserve their moment in the spotlight, too. This is the perfect beef burger alternative to serve on Labor Day weekend to give a nod to the fall flavors to come.

11 of 15

Greek Salmon Burgers

Greek Salmon Burgers
Andy Lyons

These grilled salmon burgers taste just as great as any beefy recipe. A homemade cucumber-yogurt sauce adds refreshing Greek flair to the cookout recipe. Grill the patties on a wood plank (soaked first!) to infuse a nice smoked flavor to every bite.

Buy It: Williams Sonoma Hickory Plank, Set of 4 ($30, Williams Sonoma)

12 of 15

Black Bean Chipotle Burgers

black bean chipotle burger
Blaine Moats

Crushed corn chips and brown rice give this high-protein vegan burger alternative a hearty texture, while salsa adds spice. Season with a zesty mix of poblano chile peppers, garlic, and black pepper for one of the most flavorful meatless burgers you'll ever taste.

Make-Ahead Tip: For a quick-fix meal, make and freeze these no-beef burgers for up to a month. Come dinnertime, remove from the freezer, brush with oil, and grill 8 to 10 minutes.

13 of 15

Open-Face Chicken Pesto Burgers

Open-Face Chicken Pesto Burgers
Blaine Moats

With its tantalizing combination of mozzarella, tomato, and basil pesto, this caprese-inspired chicken burger recipe is anything but ordinary. Instead of a standard bun, serve on ciabatta, focaccia, or even a pint-sized pizza crust.

14 of 15

White Bean Burgers with Spinach

veggie burger with sliced apples and onions
Kate Mathis

Craving Italian? Try this alternative beef burger recipe for dinner tonight. Italian bread crumbs, carrots, and onions ensure these patties are filled with flavor. For a refreshing side, plate each vegetarian burger with a scoop of sweet-and-sour Apple-Onion Salad.

15 of 15

Pan-Seared Pork Burgers with Peppers and Mushrooms

Pan-Seared Pork Burgers Peppers Mushrooms
Andy Lyons

Topped with a zingy mix of mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, and black pepper and served on flatbread, this ground pork burger recipe takes just 25 minutes to make. For extra flavor and vitamins, pile on some fajita veggies just before digging in.

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