We all know what turkey tastes like.
After all, our Thanksgiving or holiday dinners are incomplete without the traditional roast turkey.
But what about ground turkey? Have you seen how they make minced beef for burger patties? Well, that’s it.
Ground turkey is just turkey meat ground to a paste.
But there’s more to it which we’ll discover later.
And as it sounds, this processed form of meat is quite cheap.
You can use them for burgers, soups, rice bowls, etc.
However, we can’t say the same about its taste.
You will be surprised to know its versatility and how good it tastes.
So, what does ground turkey taste like? Let us find out together.
What is Ground Turkey?
Ground turkey is a form of processed meat made from turkey.
Although, when we say turkey, we only refer to certain parts of the bird.
These include the thighs, neck, wings, fat, and skin.
Breast meat is absent in minced turkey because they cost more than drumsticks or other parts.
The final result is a reddish rust color and a finer texture than minced beef.
Moreover, the National Turkey Federation only allows the parts mentioned above to be used in making ground turkey.
As a result, these grounded slabs of meat are easy to get and provide a cheaper option for whole meat cuts.
Ground turkey has been around since the seventies.
But it rose to popular demand only around the nineties.
Since then, it has become a favorite at various delis around the United States.
Ground turkey is commonly used as an alternative to ground beef.
This is primarily due to the lower fat concentration in Turkey meat.
What Does Ground Turkey Taste Like?
We will admit it. Ground turkey does not taste anything similar to a crispy and tender roast turkey on thanksgiving (in case you are wondering).
But we are not saying it tastes awful. Many people compare the taste of ground turkey to ground/minced beef.
However, this is incorrect. Ground turkey tastes like salted turkey with a chewy texture.
This pounded meat is quite dry due to its low-fat content.
As a result, it also has milder flavors than ground beef.
Besides, they are two different types of meat from different animals.
Ground turkey is merely used as a substitute for minced beef.
If you find it boring, you can enhance the flavors of ground turkey by adding different spices and condiments.
This will elevate the eating experience, and your ground turkey will not taste as stale.
One similar form of food we can compare ground turkey with is ground chicken.
They both come from the same family, i.e., poultry meat.
The flavors, texture, nutritional value, etc., are also similar.
However, we will point out that ground turkey is a healthier alternative.
They are a leaner cut of meat with fewer calories and sodium and more protein and iron.
Ground turkey also trumps ground beef in various aspects.
The former contains lesser saturated fat and higher B vitamin concentration.
They are also skinnier meat than beef.
All in all, the taste depends on how you cook it.
If you want the pure taste, you can use it as a patty or stir fry with a bit of oil to go with a bowl of plain rice.
However, ground turkey tastes excellent with extra seasonings in stir-fried dishes and burgers.
How to Cook Ground Turkey?
It isn’t easy to come up with recipes right off the bat to cook ground turkey.
Whipping up a stir fry or burger patty is cliché.
You want something more interesting, and we’ll provide just that.
The first tip is to use it as a substitute for ground beef.
Ground turkey makes delicious patties for your burgers.
Add a generous amount of seasonings and butter as it has low fatty juices and a mild taste.
Meatballs are another excellent option you can make with ground turkey.
Roll them up into bite-sized balls, soak them in a bit of butter, and coat them with bread crumbs.
Deep fry them at medium-high heat for a yummy treat.
You can also serve these meatballs with your spaghetti (a classic combo).
But if that’s not your thing, how about chili? Yes, minced meat equals a spicy and steaming hot bowl of chili.
Add a dash of parmesan and sesame seeds for a burst of flavor.
Here are a few measures while cooking ground turkey:
- Always handle the meat with care. The meat is already mushy and dry. You don’t want to exceed that.
- Oil and hands, and always pre-season your ground turkey for better flavors.
- The ideal cooking temperature for ground turkey is 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Ensure not to overcook the meat; otherwise, it will become drier.
- Always use the stovetop. Ovens and microwaves will only drain out the low moisture ground turkey has.
How to Buy Ground Turkey?
Like any other product, you can buy ground turkey off the shelf or online.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind.
- If you’re a newbie, we suggest buying from the store. You can ask the butcher for advice on the meat-to-fat ratio and other details.
- If you want to buy the leanest option, go for the 99% fat-free one. This variety has just 1 gram of saturated fat content per 80-85 grams.
- Check the label and make sure it has USDA-approved or animal welfare marking. These are the healthiest ones you can buy.
- Always check for the expiry date. You want to avoid ground meat that is way past the best-before date.
- Another way to check is by looking at the color and texture. If your turkey has a faded look and slimy texture, chances are that turkey is a no-go.
- If your ground turkey package is leaky, toss it back on the shelf.
- Fresh ground turkey will have only a slight “meaty” smell or no smell at all. They will also have a pink color indicating their freshness. That is your best bet.
- Ground turkey is notorious for the presence of bacteria. Some test results also showed the presence of germs like salmonella. Be wary while buying.
It is always a risk when it comes to ground meat.
These meats are not always the safest, whether cattle or poultry.
But whatever it may be, you can’t deny that ground turkey tastes absolutely delicious with suitable recipes.
A lot of people will also say ground beef tastes better. We say mash the two.
You’ll be surprised at the exciting flavors when you combine the two.
Another good thing is that you can make ground turkey at home.
This is a safer option to experiment with cooking with this delicious meat.
Surprise your friends and family by stealing some ground turkey recipes online.
We hope this article helps with everything you need to know about ground turkey.