Chicken Smash Burgers

These chicken smash burgers are a weekly tradition in the Hegde household. They come together in about 30 minutes and are extremely filling, healthy and easy to make. You get an amazing freshness with the variety of herbs and vegetables while getting big and bold flavors from the “secret sauce” aioli. 

Serves 4


  • For the patty
    • 1 pound ground chicken (breast or thigh)
    • 1 tbs olive oil
    • ½ white onion, finely chopped
    • ½ bell pepper, finely chopped
    • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
    • A small handful of parsley (or whatever herbs you have on hand)
    • 1 slice bread, finely chopped
    • Salt, pepper, and red pepper flake to taste
    • 4 slices mature cheddar cheese (or whatever you want)
  • For the “secret sauce”
    • 2 tbs mayonnaise
    • 1 tbs ketchup
    • 1 tsp mustard
    • 3 tbs pickles, finely chopped
    • ½ tsp garlic powder
    • ½ tsp onion powder
    • Salt, pepper, and red pepper flake to taste
  • A large handful of arugula
  • 4 burger buns
  • Sliced onion/tomatoes for garnish
  • Butter to toast the buns


  • For the patty
    • In a small pan on medium heat, sweat the garlic, onions, peppers, and chili flakes in until fragrant and translucent
    • Add those to a large bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mix until well combined and form into 4 equal balls
    • Heat a lightly oiled large pan on medium-high heat and place the 4 balls evenly
    • Place a square of parchment paper atop your balls and smash them with a stout spatula until they match the size of your buns
    • Cook for 2-3 minutes until golden brown, flip, cover with the cheese and cook for another 2-3 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 Fahrenheit and the cheese is melted
  • Assembly
    • Toast your buns in the same pan as the patties until golden brown
    • In a bowl, mix all the secret sauce ingredients and adjust seasoning to your liking
    • Place a spoonful of the sauce atop your toasted buns, follow with the patty, the garnish, and arugula, and finally the top bun

Chef’s tips:

  • If you use chicken thighs, the burger will be juicier but slightly higher in calories due to the added fat. The chicken breast will be slightly lower in calories and will still be very juicy. 
  • The chopped bread rather than the breadcrumbs help absorb the juices released by the chicken, leading to an especially juicy burger

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