Ground meat is a surefire bet for inexpensive meals that are quick and easy to prepare. While beef and pork (particularly sausage) tend to hog the spotlight, don’t sleep on ground turkey and chicken.
There’s a slight dropoff in protein when you switch to poultry, but the fact that they’re lower in saturated fat (turkey happens to be even leaner than chicken) makes them a much more appealing option for those looking to lower their cholesterol levels. Just be sure to check if you’re purchasing ground dark meat or ground white meat in case you have a strong preference for one or the other.
How to Store Ground Poultry
Raw or cooked ground poultry can be stored in a refrigerator for a few days. Ensure the meat remains in its original packaging (which should be vacuum-sealed or tightly-wrapped) until it is ready to be cooked.
Ground poultry can last up to three months in the freezer. Before storing, remove the meat from its original packaging and rewrap it tightly using aluminum foil, plastic wrap, or freezer paper. Double wrap if you are planning to store for more than two months.
Can You Substitute Ground Turkey for Ground Chicken (and Vice Versa)?
The answer is mostly yes. Given that it’s so commonplace in recipes that traditionally call for ground beef (such as chili, hamburgers, and even sloppy Joes), the overall consensus seems to be that ground turkey is an excellent substitute on that front. It can stand in for ground pork too.
Being more of a blank slate taste-wise, keeper ground chicken dishes (especially if using entirely white meat) are usually seasoned with lighter herb, spice, and sauce blends that complement and elevate the milder flavor of the chicken and that are less typically paired with beef.
At the end of the day, though, if you prefer a certain ground poultry recipe and only have the other on hand, you probably won’t notice a massive difference when using ground turkey instead of ground chicken or vice versa.
Below you’ll find some of our favorite ground turkey and chicken preparations.
Ground Turkey Recipes
There’s so much flavor packed into this spicy, hearty chili that diehard red meat lovers won’t think twice that turkey is the signature protein. The recipe yields at least six servings, so you can take a breather from cooking the rest of the week and feast on some tasty leftovers. Get our Easy Spicy Turkey Chili recipe.
What makes this turkey meatloaf better than the rest is the addition of fresh herbs and a 1, 2 punch of Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce. While it cooks in the oven, you’ve got plenty of time to focus on whipping up some sides to go with it. Get our Turkey Meatloaf recipe.
The only thing missing from these cheesy, toasty melts is a surly waitress with a beehive and cat-eye glasses. This is a case where you want to seek out dark meat for more concentrated turkey flavor. Also take note that the patties freeze well, so prepare a big batch if you’re so inclined. Get our Turkey Patty Melts recipe.
Here’s a healthy riff on warm, comforting albondigas soup, which traditionally uses beef to form the dish’s signature meatballs. One spoonful and even the most skeptical abuela will nod her head in approval. Get our Mexican Turkey Meatball Soup recipe.
Feed your inner Garfield with this satisfying, multi-layered lasagna. If you can’t find Italian turkey sausage, add a dash of fennel powder or crushed seeds to the ground blend. Speaking of DIY, you can even make your own ricotta. Get our Turkey Sausage Lasagna recipe.
Ground Chicken Recipes
There are many reasons why chef/restaurateurs Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo are lucky to call Los Angeles, among them the accessibility of bustling Thai Town and its epic collection of restaurants. It’s clear the dynamic cooking duo have become well versed in the magic of larb, the flavor-packed ground meat staple. Their addictive chicken version is sure to transport you to Bangkok. Get their Chicken Larb Cabbage Cups with Sriracha, Lime, and Green Beans recipe.
Stuffed peppers are ubiquitous in numerous culinary traditions from around the globe. This keto-friendly combo of vegetables and ground meat gets even healthier when you substitute beef for chicken. Get our Stuffed Red Bell Peppers with Ground Chicken recipe.
Ground chicken gets the Vietnamese treatment in this take on the popular banh mi sandwich. The burger ain’t your typical lightly seasoned patty, with bold ingredients such as fish sauce, ginger, and lime joining the party. Don’t forget the chile mayo. Get our Banh Mi Chicken Burger recipe.
Skip the drive-thru and cure your case of the munchies with these decadent ‘dillas inspired by the notorious Taco Bell Crunchwrap. Enjoy straight out of the pan to ensure crispiness. Get our Chicken Quesadillas recipe.
If you can’t decide between chicken parm and meatloaf why not split the difference? This family-friendly fusion of two comfort food favorites whimsically uses a muffin pan, which allows for easy portioning and has the added benefit of allowing more surface area for each serving to brown. Mmm. Get our Chicken Parmesan Meatloaf Muffins recipe.