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Asian-Inspired Tuna Burger With Wasabi Mayo Recipe

Ditch the beef and add some spice for this twist on the classic burger.
Asian-Inspired Tuna Burger With Wasabi Mayo RecipeMitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

A firm, meaty fish like tuna is prime picking for the burger treatment, and we love making tuna burgers for a protein-packed meal. All it takes is a quick pulse in the food processor or even just a bit of fine chopping. Either way, make sure the fish is very cold, which keep the proteins from binding into tough lumps. The resulting ground tuna is ready to be formed into patties and dressed up in dozens of different ways.  (If tuna isn’t your fish of choice, salmon works every bit as well.)

Plus, when topped with a spicy wasabi mayo, you’ll get a burger that brings the heat in every bite. This is far from the basic burger you might be used to!

Nutrition: 330 calories, 11 g fat (2 g saturated), 460 mg sodium

Serves 4

You’ll Need

1 lb fresh tuna
4 scallions, minced
1 tsp minced fresh ginger
1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
Canola oil, for grilling
2 Tbsp olive oil mayonnaise
1⁄2 Tbsp prepared wasabi (from powder or in premade paste)
4 whole-wheat sesame buns, split and lightly toasted
1 cup sliced cucumber, lightly salted
2 cups mixed baby greens

How to Make It

  1. Chop the tuna into 1⁄2″ cubes, then place in the freezer for 10 minutes to firm up (this will make grinding easier).
  2. Working in batches if necessary, pulse the tuna in a food processor to the consistency of ground beef. (Be sure not to overdo it; you only want to pulse it enough so that you can form patties.)
  3. Transfer to a mixing bowl, and mix in the scallions, ginger, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Form into four equal patties.
  4. Place in the fridge for at least 10 minutes before grilling to firm up.
  5. Preheat a well-oiled grill or grill pan.
  6. When hot, add the patties and cook for 2 to 3 minutes a side until browned on the outside, but still medium rare in the center.
  7. Flip and handle carefully, as these burgers are more delicate than beef burgers.
  8. Mix the mayo with the wasabi, then spread evenly onto the bun tops.
  9. Line the bottoms with cucumber and greens, top with the burgers, then crown with the bun tops.

Eat This Tip

Like any beef or turkey burger, these tuna patties are prime picks for an array of flourishes and accoutrements. Change up the burger with one of these treatments:

  • Mix the tuna with Dijon and herbs (instead of the Asian seasonings), then top with slices of grilled tomato and tapenade
  • Brush the Asian-inspired tuna patties with teriyaki sauce, and top with pickled jalapeños and rings of grilled pineapple
  • Brush the Asian-inspired tuna patties with hoisin, and top with mayonnaise spiked with lime juice and sriracha

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