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Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Arugula and Lemon Basil Aioli

Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods I am a sucker for pretzel buns, and was immediately excited when I found mini soft pretzel buns in our bakery department at Festival!  What a perfect way to hold together some of my favorite flavors…. Juicy grilled turkey, tangy sun-dried tomatoes, and peppery arugula with fresh lemony basil goodness.  You may be wondering where the cheese is {because we are in Wisconsin, and burgers need cheese}.  Don’t fret! These little babies are stuffed with mozzarella!  And just because you asked nicely, I decided to put an extra slice on top.  Let’s dig in – all this cheese-talk is making me hungry! I chose this ingredient combination because the flavors and textures complement one another and make for a really colorful and better-for-you burger.  These sliders are also easy to throw together – perfect for a potluck or barbeque.  And because they are mini, they are perfect for kids and those who are looking to ‘cut back’ without compromising flavor!  I like to try a few bites of each dish at a potluck, so I appreciate having a mini-burger option. Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods Let’s start off with this super-easy, super-fresh lemon basil aioli {I just love the smell of fresh basil}! Traditional aioli is a spread made with garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, and egg yolks. But, to keep things simple, I am making a shortcut version using ¼ cup of mayonnaise made with olive oil and adding in some freshly squeezed lemon juice!  To make the aioli, place the mayo into a small bowl and add the juice of half a lemon. I am using a citrus squeezer so I don’t lose any seeds in the mayo. If you don’t have one, you can simply juice the lemon using your hand as a barrier for the seeds. Chiffonade the basil and add to mayo/lemon mixture. Whisk until combined and place in the refrigerator. Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods Now that the aioli is ready to go, let’s keep this slider recipe rolling! Preheat the grill to medium-high. While it is heating up, get all of the toppings chopped and arranged so you can easily assemble the burgers when they are ready. These mini pretzel buns are not cut, so I am using a serrated knife to cut them in half lengthwise. I am not using the mini salt packet that came with the buns because, quite frankly, we have enough flavor going on without the added salt! Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods I chose to purchase sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil because they are juicier than the ones packed without liquid.  They are ready-to-eat, but a little chewy. So, to avoid a big mess {I am usually the one with food down the front of my shirt}, I am chopping the tomatoes first. Using a sharp knife, slice the tomatoes in to strips.  Four sun-kissed tomatoes should do for the 6 sliders I am making today. The rest of them can stay packed in the jar and refrigerated {they are great on pizza or sandwiches}! Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods To assemble the mini turkey patties, season with salt and pepper and add a dab of Dijon mustard [optional]. I like to add Dijon because it keeps the burgers moist {the turkey is quite lean, which means it easily becomes dry when cooking}.  Incorporate the seasonings in to the ground turkey and form 6 balls. Using your thumb, make a deep imprint into each. Place a piece of fresh mozzarella into the imprint and form the patty back around it so the cheese is hidden. {Boy, my guests are in for a cheesy surprise!} Drizzle olive oil over the turkey balls and evenly coat to keep them from sticking to the grill. Press them down so they form a little patty. Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods Place each patty on the grill. Close the lid and cook for about 4 minutes. Flip the mini patties using metal tongs or spatula. Close the lid and cook for 4 more minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F. Remove from the grill and get ready to assemble the burgers! {Tip: Want to really ‘wow’ your guests? Grill the buns for about 30-60 seconds so they get crispy.} Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods Layer arugula (or baby spinach), turkey burger, mozzarella slice and strips of sun-dried tomato on bottom bun. Spread aioli on top bun and place on burger. {I can barely contain my excitement!} Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods Easy-peasy! Enjoy these juicy, stuffed sliders with a fruit salad for a delicious summer meal! Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders #festfoods  

Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Sliders

With Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Arugula and Lemon Basil Aioli



  • ¼ cup reduced fat mayo with olive oil
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 4 large basil leaves



  • 6 (1 pkg. – 8.4 oz.) soft pretzel mini buns (or gluten free hot dog buns sliced into thirds for gluten free)
  • 4 sun dried tomatoes, packed in olive oil
  • 1 cup arugula (or baby spinach), washed and dried
  • 4 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese log, sliced
  • 1 ¼ lb. lean ground turkey
  • ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil



  1. To prepare aioli, place mayo in a small bowl. Squeeze juice of ½ lemon into bowl with mayo. On a cutting board, chiffonade basil and add to mayo and lemon juice. Whisk until combined. Place in the refrigerator.
  2. Preheat grill to medium, about 375°F.
  3. Place soft pretzel mini buns on cutting board. Use serrated knife to cut each bun in half. Set aside.
  4. Place sun-dried tomatoes on plastic cutting board; cut in strips. Set aside. Tear or chop 2 mozzarella slices in to 3 pieces for stuffing the burgers. Set aside the additional mozzarella slices to top the burgers.
  5. To prepare burgers, place ground turkey in a bowl; season with salt, pepper and Dijon mustard (optional) and work with your hands until evenly distributed. Separate ground turkey in to 6 even-sized balls. Using your thumb, make an indent in each burger. Insert one mozzarella piece in each burger. Form the burger around the mozzarella piece so it is hidden. Drizzle the olive oil on the burgers, making sure each mini burger is coated. Press down on the turkey balls to make a patty.
  6. Place patties on the grill, cooking on each side for about 4 minutes, until internal temperature reaches 165°F.  Optional: Grill sliced pretzel buns for 30-60 seconds.
  7. Assemble burgers by layering arugula, turkey burger, mozzarella slice and 3-4 strips of sun-dried tomato on bottom bun. Spread aioli on top bun and place on burger.  Enjoy!

Yield: 6 servings

Per Serving*: Calories 370, Total Fat 19g(Saturated 5g, Trans 0g), Cholesterol 85mg, Sodium 350mg, Total Carbohydrate 21g (Dietary Fiber 1g, Sugars 4g), Protein 25g, Vitamin A 6%, Vitamin C 10%, Calcium 15%, Iron 10%

*Nutritional values are an approximation. Actual nutritional values may vary due to preparation techniques, variations related to suppliers, regional and seasonal differences, or rounding.  Fruits and Veggies - More Matters #festfoods

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Disclaimer: The information provided here is intended for general information only. It is not intended as medical advice. Health information changes frequently as research constantly evolves. You should not rely on any information gathered here as a substitute for consultation with medical professionals. Information may not be reproduced without permission from Festival Foods. We strongly encourage guests to review the ingredient lists of suggested products before purchasing to ensure they meet individual dietary needs. All products not available at all Festival locations.

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