Chicken parmesan burgers take everything we love about the classic and reimagine it into burger form! This dinner has the perfect combination of juicy meat with a crispy coating, gooey melted cheese, thick marinara sauce, and toasted buns.
One thing we love here for dinner is a juicy burger. Sometimes I make my classic beef burgers, other times salmon is the meat of choice, and others it’s time for a Greek version. What I hadn’t done much with is chicken. Don’t know why, but I hadn’t got around to it.
Now I have! And for my first, I’ve gone for chicken parm and it is seriously…amazing.
It took me a little while to get the sauce just right (it’s gotta be THICK) and pack enough umami into the meat, but now I get requests to make it again if it hasn’t been in the rotation for a while. We are FANS. 🙂
What do you need?
- Tomato Sauce
- Chopped Tomatoes – Use chopped so you can really cook the sauce down before pureeing it smooth.
- Onion/Garlic – A little of each to make the base of the sauce.
- Herbs – Dried oregano and thyme plus some fresh basil.
- Chicken Burgers
- Ground Chicken – Stay away from all breast meat and use a mix of light and dark for the juiciest burgers.
- Umami Bombs – Soy, anchovy, and parmesan amp up the meatiness.
- Breadcrumbs – Use panko for the most crunch.
- Mozzarella Cheese – I like low moisture for its melting ability.
- Hamburger Buns – Use your favorite, just don’t forget to toast them!
How to make this
To make chicken parm burgers coat ground meat patties in breadcrumbs and fry until golden brown. Top with mozzarella cheese and thick tomato sauce. Serve on a toasted bun.
1. Tomato Sauce
This sauce is closely based on my Marinara Sauce recipe. Just much thicker and very smooth!
As with the inspirational recipe, start by sauteing onion and garlic until soft. Then add the tomatoes and herbs and bring to a simmer.
Now be patient and let it simmer down so that much of liquid has been boiled off. Once that happens, puree it smooth.
Tip: Thicken BEFORE you puree. Smooth sauce has a tendency to bubble up and splatter while chunky does not.
2. Make the Patties
Mix together the ground chicken, soy sauce, anchovy paste, parmesan, and garlic. Form the meat into four patties.
Pour the breadcrumbs into a bowl and then gently pat the patties all over with crumbs. Lay them on a plate.
Tip: If the meat is a little wet and soft, put it on paper towels to drain before making the mix. At least 10 minutes, but you can do it an hour before and just leave it all the fridge. Once drained mix everything and make the patties.
3. Fry and Top
Add some oil to a skillet and get it hot. Add the patties and fry them on both sides, turning occasionally, until they are golden brown and cooked through. Adjust the heat as necessary to keep a good fry without burning.
Top each with a piece of cheese. Cover the skillet and move it off the heat. Keep an eye on things and be ready to move them to a plate once the cheese is melted.
Brush the buns with olive oil and sprinkle with some kosher salt. Place them inside up on a tray and broil them until browned. (You can also grill or use the bagel setting on a toaster oven.)
Place each patty on a bun and top with tomato sauce and fresh basil. Serve with more sauce on the side.
👇🏻 Here is my daughter absconding with a burger the moment I finished my photos! And then she had a second one for dinner.
If you try my recipe for Chicken Parmesan Burgers, I would love to hear from you in the comments with your experience and rating! And I’m happy to answer any questions you might have.
– Stay Safe, Annemarie
Crispy Juicy Chicken Parmesan Burgers
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 28 oz can (or box) chopped tomatoes
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/4 tsp dried thyme
- 2-3 leaves fresh basil
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 lb ground chicken
- 1/2 cup fluffy shredded parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 1/2 tsp anchovy paste
- 1 clove garlic, shredded or very finely minced
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- 4 thick slices low moisture mozzarella cheese, whole milk or low fat
- 4 hamburger buns
- Make the Sauce: Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan. Add onion, garlic and a sprinkle of salt. Saute on medium until the onion is soft and lightly browned, about 5 minutes.
- Pour in the tomatoes along with the oregano, thyme, basil, and salt. Bring to a simmer and let bubble until much of the liquid has been cooked off, about 15 minutes. The sauce will be thick but not dry.
- Puree, either in the pot with a stick blend or in a regular blender. Keep the sauce warm while you make the burgers.
- Make the Burgers: Mix together the chicken with the parmesan, soy sauce, anchovy, and garlic.
- Divide and shape into 4 patties.
- Coat them with breadcrumbs: Pour the panko into a bowl and gently press the burgers into the breadcrumbs until fully coated. Set the coated burgers onto a plate.
- Fry in a Skillet: Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet until the oil shimmers and the pan is hot.
- Slip the burgers into the hot oil and, cook, turning occasionally until they are cooked and read 155F on an instant thermometer, 12-15 minutes total. Add more oil to the skillet if needed.
- Melt the Cheese: Once the burgers are done, top each with mozzarella. Cover the skillet and move it off the heat until the cheese is melted 1-2 minutes.
- Toast the Buns: Move an oven rack to the top position and heat the broiler. Brush or spray the buns with a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Cook under the broiler until golden brown. (Keep a close eye! They will cook fast.)
- Serve: To serve place a burger on a bun and top with some of the tomato sauce. Serve with extra sauce on the side. A little fresh sliced basil on top is a nice touch.
- Ground Chicken: I prefer a mix of white and dark meat since it will be juicier. Also, if your meat seems wet, let it sit on paper towels for 10-15 minutes to pull away some of the moisture. (This can be a problem if you are using a previously frozen package.)
- Tomatoes: I use Pomi brand in the box. Note that this brand doesn't contain juice so it starts thicker. If you are using canned tomatoes you may need to cook it down a few minutes more.
- Toasting the Buns: The sauce can be a little wet so I recommend toasting so that the buns can stand up to the burger.
- Mozzarella: You can use fresh if you wish. Just be careful on melting since it will turn rubbery if it gets too hot.
- Temperature: I add the cheese at the low end of the temperature range for ground meat. They will continue cooking and go up ~10 degrees while sitting in the covered skillet.