Mediterranean-Spiced Lamb Burger Recipe

A week of noshing on Mexican food did me in. Or so you’d think.

Do you know what I was craving the minute I returned stateside? A burger. A grilled, juicy burger that was messy as hell. I blame in on 4th of July — or my lack thereof. Try as one might, it’s really hard to celebrate Independence Day when you’re not at home. No amount of fireworks can make up for the fact you’re not on American soil. So, not even a day back home, and I got out the grill to cook up these bad boys.

They’re lamb burgers with a Mediterranean slant — loaded with all sorts of spices and herbs then garnished with olive mayo, red onions, cucumbers, arugula, and crumbled feta. Ok, they’re not the most classic All-American burger but they’re tasty as can be. And, while they didn’t make up for missing the 4th they made for one very satisfying homecoming.


Mediterranean-Spiced Lamb Burger Recipe

  • Makes: 4 servings
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Hands-On Time: 30 minutes


  • For the mayonnaise:
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise or plain, whole milk Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons olive tapenade (or finely chopped olives)
  • For the burgers:
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground lamb
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh oregano (or 1 tablespoon dried)
  • 2 teaspoons grated garlic
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Vegetable oil, for the grill
  • To assemble:
  • 4 hamburger buns, sliced in half and toasted
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced into 4 rings
  • 1 handful baby arugula
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (about 2 ounces)
  • 2 Persian cucumbers, thinly sliced


  • For the mayonnaise:

Place the mayonnaise and tapenade or olives in a medium bowl and mix to incorporate.

  • For the burgers:

Place all of the ingredients except the oil in a large bowl and, using your clean hands, mix until just combined. Split the meat into 4 equal portions and shape each piece into a patty that is 1/2-inch-thick and roughly 1/2-inch wider than the burger buns.

Using your thumb, make a 1-inch-wide indentation in the center of each patty in order to help the burgers cook more evenly.

Heat a grill pan or outdoor grill to medium high (about 450°F to 550°F). When the grill is ready, use tongs to rub the grate with several layers of paper towels soaked in vegetable oil.

Place the patties on the grill indentation-side up, close the grill, and cook, making sure you do not press down on the patties, until grill marks appear on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Flip each patty and cook with grill closed until the patties are firm to the touch, about 3 more minutes. Remove to a clean plate and let rest in a warm place for a few minutes.

  • To assemble:

Spread about 1 tablespoon of the mayonnaise on each top and bottom bun (you may have some mayo leftover). Divide red onions and cucumber slices amongst burger roll bottoms, top with a patty, then garnish each with arugula and feta. Top with the bun and serve immediately.

Beef // Lamb // Pork Recipes Salad // Sandwich // Soup