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Ground Turkey Patties With Cranberry & Pine Nut Pesto

Healthy Turkey Patties With Cranberry Pesto

  • Author: Irena Macri
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 12 patties (or so) 1x
  • Category: Main
  • Method: Pan-fried
  • Cuisine: Australia
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Learn how to make delicious and healthy turkey patties (or rissoles in Australia) served with cranberry and nut pesto for that festive yet simple dish that can be enjoyed any time of the year but especially for Thanksgiving or Christmas. Gluten-free and paleo-friendly recipe.



For the pesto

  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts (other nuts, see notes)
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seed
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (if you want it a little more tart)

For the patties

  • 800 g/1.7 lb ground turkey mince (from thighs & breast is best)
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or minced
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds powder (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon or yellow mustard
  • Oil for cooking (coconut, ghee or olive oil can be used)
  • Fresh parsley, for garnish


  1. Soak cranberries in a small bowl of hot water for about 20-30 minutes.
  2. Add pine nuts to a medium-hot frying pan and cook for about two minutes, stirring frequently, until lightly toasted and browned.
  3. Transfer most of them to a food processor (I like to reserve a few for garnish). Add the rest of ingredients and soaked cranberries. Add 2-3 tablespoons of the water, in which the cranberries were soaking. Process into a pesto-like paste, for about 30 seconds, scraping the sides a couple of times. Transfer to a ramekin.
  4. Combine ground turkey mince with the rest of ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Use your hands to work the meat and incorporate all the ingredients. Using wet hands, roll small batches of mince into balls and flatten into round patties.
  5. Heat about a tablespoon of oil or ghee in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the patties and cook for 4-5 minutes on each side, adding a little more oil when flipping them over if needed.
  6. Serve patties with a side of cranberry pesto and your favourite veggies.


  • Other nuts or seeds such as sunflower or pumpkin could be used instead of pine nuts, especially if you’re on the budget. Pine nuts do give it that special touch if you can splurge out.
  • The meat mixture can be made into meatballs or even meatloaf.

Keywords: paleo, gluten-free, pesto, pine nuts, turkey, poultry

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