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Spiced Lamb Burgers with Grilled Onions

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Spiced Lamb Burgers with Grilled Onions

Spiced Lamb Burgers with Grilled Onions

Jessica Braider
Lamb burgers have a flavor that is just a little more exotic than beef, maybe because it’s not as familiar to us Americans, but not so different that kids who like hamburgers are likely to reject them. You can flavor these up in all sorts of interesting ways, topping them with feta mixed in yogurt, with mint jelly, or with thin slices of cucumber or pickles. Recipe tester Anne O’Neill said her kids both gave it two thumbs up and her 9-year-old daughter said, “I think the spicing is perfect. You can taste it, but not too much.”
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings


  • 1 lb. ground lamb, preferably grass fed, or use grass fed beef or turkey
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder or use 2 cloves fresh minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. minced fresh herbs such as parsley, mint, and oregano
  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 bell pepper (any color), thinly sliced
  • 4 whole wheat English muffins or use pita pockets (use wheat/gluten-free, if needed)
  • 1 tomato thinly sliced (optional)


  • In a medium bowl, thoroughly combine the lamb, salt, cumin, cardamom, garlic powder, pepper, and herbs, and form it into 4 burgers about 1-inch thick. Set it aside (you can let it sit out for up to 2 hours or refrigerate it for up to 24 hours).
  • Heat a heavy skillet over medium heat, add half the oil, and when it is hot, add the onions and bell peppers. Sauté them, stirring occasionally, until they are tender and browned, about 20 minutes.
  • After 10 minutes, heat a grill pan or large heavy skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium-high heat, and add the rest of the oil (alternatively cook them on the grill, set on a medium setting, using the same cooking times described below).
  • When it is hot, add the burgers and sear them (cook without moving them) for 4 – 5 minutes until they are golden brown on the bottom, flip them and cook on the other side for 4 – 5 minutes to desired doneness (should have an internal temperature of 120 – 140 degrees). (Lower the heat if the burgers are getting burnt on the outside before the inside is finished cooking.)
  • Serve the burgers on the English muffins, toasted, if you’d like, topped with the onions and peppers, sliced tomatoes (optional), and with ketchup, feta, Cheddar cheese, Greek yogurt, or whatever condiments your family prefers.


Do Ahead or Delegate: Combine the spices, chop the herbs, make the ground meat mixture, shape into patties and refrigerate, slice the onion, bell pepper, and tomato (optional).
Scramble Flavor Booster: Add the zest of 1 lemon to the lamb mixture.
Tip: Season and leave the meat out for an hour before cooking it, if possible, to bring it to room temperature, which will help keep it moist and flavorful.  (Don’t leave it unrefrigerated for more than 2 hours, however.)
Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 424, Total Fat: 22g, 33.5%; Saturated Fat: 7g, 32%; Cholesterol: 72mg, 24%; Sodium: 580mg, 24%; Total Carbohydrate: 29g, 9.5%; Dietary Fiber: 5g, 17%; Sugar: 5g; Protein: 30g
Like this recipe? Check out The Scramble's family-friendly meal plans to see just how simple getting dinner on the table can be!
Keyword 30 Minutes (or less) Meals, All, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Fall, Gluten-Free, High Fiber, Kid-Friendly, Kosher, Low Fat, Main Dish, No Added Sugar, Nut-Free, Sandwiches/Wraps, Spring, Summer, Winter
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