Use clean hands to mix the black pepper, salt, and avocado oil into the ground elk.
Shape the elk patties into 3 large patties that are each about 3½ inches (8.9 cm) in diameter and ½-¾ inch (1.3-1.9 cm) thick.
Spray a cast iron skillet with cooking spray. Heat the skillet over medium heat for a few minutes. Carefully place the elk patties in a single layer in the heated pan.
Cook the elk patties for 4-5 minutes per side over medium heat. If making cheeseburgers, top the burgers with cheese during the last 1-2 minutes of cooking.
Note: Ground elk is supposed to be cooked to a minimum safe internal temperature of 160°F or 71°C (use a meat thermometer to check). IMVHO, this temp leads to overcooked burgers, but I'm giving you this information so you can make your own decisions.
Adding optional burger toppings:
Put the hamburger buns on plates. Add the mayo, crispy onions, lettuce, burger patties, tomato, caramelized onion, and BBQ sauce (in that order).
This is a level 2 recipe (transition or weight maintenance). The nutrition information is for the elk burger (no bun, no toppings). You could easily make a low calorie, low carb, high calorie, etc. meal with these depending on what else you include.I usually skip the bun with my burgers and make a burger bowl. Piled high with non-starchy veggies, it’s a filling, low cal meal.I’ve photographed the elk burgers with buns for this article, because people like to see the buns. There’s just something more photogenic and clickable about a cheeseburger with a nice, fluffy bun, I guess. I must admit, it does make for a nice photo.Aesthetics aside, if you have a weight loss goal, keep in mind that many of us overeat refined grains. In terms of general nutrition advice, it's probably a good idea for most to cut back on white flour foods. I’m not necessarily saying go low carb (though some do find that strategy most helpful).But what if you’re serving up elk for the first time, and you’re not sure your family is having it? That’s why I’m giving you my completely irresistible and scrumptious suggestions for elk burger toppings. It’s hard not to gobble up a cheesy, crispy onion-ed, barbecued burger, whether it’s elk, beef, or turkey.Nutrition information is for one serving of the recipe without the bun or toppings.