Italian burgerBurgers get boring, fast. So I’m always up for experimenting with new burger ideas. And now’s the time: It’s National Hamburger Month. But don’t you think calling it National Burger Month, would inspire far more creativity. Let’s just leave the ground beef out it entirely, shall we?

This recipe goes sans ground beef. Instead, Mr. Squid picked up Italian sausage for the patties for half our crew and ground turkey for me and my teen (we like lite burgers). You could also use portobello mushrooms.


3 things make this burger a stand-out:

  • Baste it with marinara at the very end of the grill time.
  • Broil cheese on the burger after grilling.
  • Add a caprese-inspired topping



Servings: 4



1 pound Italian sausage or ground turkey

Italian seasoning

Garlic powder

Onion powder

Salt and pepper

4 slices of mozzarella or provolone cheese

1/4 cup marinara, divided

4 burger buns


Caprese topping

1 Tbsp. chopped pepperoncinis (opt. but oh so tasty)

1/4 cup shredded mozzarella or Asiago (preferred)

2 Roma tomatoes, diced

1/4 cup basil, chopped into thin strips



  1. Shape meat into four patties. Sprinkle liberally with Italian seasoning, garlic and onion powders, and salt and pepper.
  2. Grill at medium high heat for about 6 minutes on each side. During the final minutes of grilling, baste with 1/8 cup of the marinara.
  3. Place the patties onto a baking sheet. Add 1 tablespoon marinara onto each patty along with a slice of cheese.
  4. Broil the patties for about 3 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
  5. Meanwhile mix together the caprese toppings and add a heaping tablespoon (or more!) to each burger.
  6. Serve on lightly toasted buns.


Kids’ reactions: My teen added extras of the caprese topping to her burger. My younger two kids tried the caprese topping but didn’t want it on their burgers. Ah well, the pepperoncinis can get a little spicy.



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