Let’s talk about fun ways to add plant foods to your summer menu.  While I am an omnivore, I am all about eating fewer animal foods and loading up on plant foods like whole fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans and nuts to meals and snacks. (FYI: This recipe is featured in my latest book, Total Body Diet for Dummies).  In my mind, healthful cooking is all about adding delicious flavor with real food to add color, texture and nutrient-rich taste.

Beet burgers are hot right now.  Who doesn’t love a good beet?  Yes, they are naturally sweet and packed with nutrients that may help fend off cancer, keep blood pressure in check and they are only a mere 45 calories for a half-cup serving.  You can’t go wrong. . .


You can add beets to salads, soups, chili, grains like quinoa, couscous and pasta, as well as dice them up.  For this recipe, I mash them with a potato masher [shown below]  and mix them with olives, shallots, extra-virgin olive oil and smoked (Spanish) paprika for a tasty relish to top veggie or meat burgers, quesadillas and even omelets.

So let’s get cooking.  These turkey burgers are super simple to make; just add a hint of Worcestershire sauce, diced shallots, sliced mushrooms, Dijon mustard and parmesan cheese.   Heat up the grill and cook burgers thoroughly (to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F). Fini. Enjoy.

LetterGlowImage.jpgWhether you enjoy burgers served in a whole grain bun or over a bed of greens, the beet relish adds great flavor and taste.  Plus, you kick up the nutritional value a notch.  You can beat it!

Simple Turkey Burgers with Smokey Beet and Olive Relish


Make 4 burgers (1/4 lb. with 1/4 cup relish each)


1 pound ground turkey breast, 93% lean

2 mushrooms, finely chopped

1 medium shallot, minced

2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated

For relish:

1 cup pre-cooked beets, chopped and mashed

1/4 cup black olives, diced

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon smoked paprika


Heat the grill.  In a medium bowl, mix turkey, mushrooms, half of the shallots (reserve the other half for the relish), Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic powder and cheese.   When combined use your hands to make 4 medium-size patties.  Place on the hot grill.  Flip burgers once, cook until internal temperature is at least 165 degrees F or meat is not pink inside.

In the meantime, mix together beets, olives, remaining shallots, oil and paprika.  Set aside.

Place cooked burgers on a plate with greens or on a bun and dollop with the relish.  Enjoy!

Nutrition Information (per burger with 1/4 cup relish, no bun): Calories: 272, Total Fat: 17 g, Saturated Fat: 4 g, Trans Fat: 0 g, Cholesterol: 94 mg, Sodium: 297 mg, Carbohydrates: 8 g, Dietary Fiber: 2 g, Sugars: 4 g, Protein: 22 g

Enjoy eating simply,


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