Turkey Bacon & Bleu Cheese Sliders

I received a lovely little email yesterday from a fan. You know you’re a big time food blogger when you get fan mail. This, in my industry, is the equivalent of getting your photo on the cover of People mag and wearing shiny dresses to the Academy Awards. Food blogging is a very luxurious job, you know.

So, it’s always a treat when you hear from your peeps. Especially people who are honest, open, and well-versed in L.M. Montgomery books. Those are my favorite kind.

I almost deleted this fan mail, but then thought there are probably more of you out there who ought to know that you’re not alone in your desire to tell me to Calm Down. And yes, that’s a capital “C” and “D”, which is apparently a very proper noun. Who knew?

From: Benji023

Subject: A Couple of Things.

Message Body:

First, you are not The Pioneer Woman. Stop copying her.

Second, you are way obsessed with yourself. I am sure you have heard this before, but Calm Down.

Third, you are such a sell-out. You are like the old, mean, ugly man in Anne of Avonlea. He wanted to paint ads on his barn to make money. Anne and her society stopped him. Because he is an idiotic sell-out. Just. Like. You.

That is all.

And for the rest of you, a recipe for sliders. Because, you aren’t Benji023. So there.

Off to tidy my leather chaps while tending to my Basset Hounds.


Turkey Bacon & Bleu Cheese Sliders


1 pound ground turkey
1 cup cooked quinoa or brown rice
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
Fresh Ground pepper
1/2 cup bleu cheese
2 tablespoons bacon bits
1 cup baby arugula
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
2 tablespoons barbecue sauce
4 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
12 mini slider rolls


In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey, quinoa, garlic salt, and ground pepper. Mix together until well combined. Press a golf-ball sized ball of turkey meat into your hands, use your finger to press a well into the center of the burger, and fill with bleu cheese crumbles and bacon. Pat the turkey to hide the cheese. Gently press into a thick patty. Repeat until all the turkey has been stuffed and pressed into patties.

Cook patties on a hot griddle over medium heat until the center of each burger is cooked through. (Sometimes I find it works well to cover the griddle with a lid to ensure complete and even cooking).

In a small bowl, mix together the honey, mustard, barbecue sauce, and mayonnaise. Serve cooked patties on a bun with the honey-mustard sauce and arugula.

66 Responses to “Turkey Bacon & Bleu Cheese Sliders”

  1. peachkins says:

    Oh my gosh! Who is that mean mean person???

    I admit, I’ve bookmarked lots of your recipes thinking of making them in the future because they look so delicious and not because I would like to copy you.

    i love your recipes! Ignore that Asshole. He probably can’t cook…and he probably can’t count… 3 things is not a couple

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Someone needs a cup of coffee … and then a good poo. ;)

    Keep on keepin’ on, girl. Can’t wait to make the sliders.

  3. Leah says:

    Oh my Heck! For rude! I love your blog! And your recipes!!

  4. What a jerk! I don’t understand people who feel the need to send hateful mail like that. What good does it do? *sigh* But such is our world.

    I agree with the other comments – you are frickin’ awesome and I love both your recipes and blog. I actually think you’re the OPPOSITE of a sell out as you seem super genuine and humble.

    That person can go take a hike!

  5. Joleen says:

    Some people have nothing better to do than knock down others. If he doesn’t like your blog DON’T READ IT. For the rest of us that do like it, we think it’s great!!

  6. Sondra says:

    Copying PW? Right. Because all of her recipes are healthy and vegan. I love PW – but I also love the approach you take of adding more veggies, making it healthier, and some vegan. Thank you for making it healthy and delish! Keep it coming!

    And quinoa.. in a slider?? SO trying this!

  7. Yeowza! First of all, to copy someone is the ultimate form of flattery. Aren’t we all copying each other in some form, in our attempt to blog and make ourself better at it? PW is doing something right, as successful as she has become in such a short time. Don’t we all wish we could be just a little successful like that? KUDOS to you for posting that nasty email. Your blog is one I follow as well as one that I post on my blog to let others see how great your site is. KEEP up the fantastic work, giving us great recipes, and telling us about yourself. Don’t change a thing.

    • Brooke says:

      Yes, we sure do! PW’s is amazing, and totally worth emulating. Though, I don’t think I could dye my hair red and quite get away with it. :)

      THANK YOU for being a Cheeky Kitchen follower. You are lovely pants!

  8. Marci says:

    Hey! You’re recipes are great! I made the Chicken and Asparagus Pot Pie. Awesomeness! I have saved others to make in the future, the sliders will be on that list soon as I am done telling you thanks for posting your recipes… so THANKS! I love that they are easy for super busy Moms like meeee!!!

    Keep your chin up. The rude email is just a result of someone else’s bad day… ;)

  9. Katrina says:

    These are adorable! Great recipe :)

  10. Evi Figgat says:

    Can’t wait to try this recipe. As for the mean awful person, before they go and judge/criticize you maybe they should realize that they indeed need to learn to write. I mean Being a Jerk 101 at least requires you to have correct grammar and spelling. As for “Calm Down” being a proper noun, it is not; they’re just lame. Moral of the story: Ignore them. You’re awesome.

  11. Dana says:

    I must get these adorable buns! Would you share the brand and if they are available commercially? These are just what I need for a party I’m having for my son. Will definitely be trying this recipe – I’m so tired of the same thing every night! Thanks!

    • Brooke says:

      Dana! They are homemade slider buns! I’ll try to post the recipe tonight. They are quick, easy, and make a TON!!!!

  12. Laura says:

    These burgers look delicious! Thanks to this post, I am also going to start using Calm Down as a pronoun. I’m a teacher, so I could really start a movement with the next generation!

  13. Joanne says:

    I don’t comment much, but just want you to know. I adore you. And yeah. Getting fan mail like this? Always makes my day.

  14. Betsy says:

    I just want you to know that before the jump, I was so certain that it was a TRUE fan letter, and that the only character from an L.M. Montgomery book anyone would compare you to was Anne Shirley, because of her well-documented Sheer Awesomeness (obviously that much awesome requires capitals). (Or perhaps Diana, because Diana was, after all, a stunning beauty, and had sense enough to be BFFs with awesome people like Anne Shirley. lol)

    In elementary school, we learned about Warm Fuzzies (nice, gentle people) and Cold Pricklies (aka..meanies). Some people, like Benji, are obviously Cold Pricklies. Here’s hoping the Warm Fuzzies outnumber him so much that he falls right off the radar!

    • Brooke says:

      Ha! Good! I didn’t want to be a Debbie Downer from the top of the post. It thought it was such a funny email, simple had to share. And, all those Cold Pricklies can have each other. I’m convinced I have a group if the warmest, fuzziest blog-reader friends in the world! You included! XO!

  15. Kerry says:

    I’ve never understood people who have so much anger & hate inside them that a FOOD BLOG makes them explode & leave such hateful comments/emails. Maybe it’s the heat. In one of my last posts, all I said was I like peanut butter more than Nutella and since then I’ve been called ignorant, obese, uncivilized, and a whole other slew of fun things. All for having an opinon on my OWN blog. Anyway. Your blog is awesome, your recipes and photos are beautiful, & keep doing what you’re doing because it’s why we all love you.

    • Brooke says:

      I know, right? It’s a FOOD BLOG! Hilar! And…peanut butter is at very least equal to Nutella by all stretches of the imagination!

  16. Jennifer says:

    Well I guess I can’t really comment on you copying Pioneer Woman because I don’t follow her. But I do follow your blog and I can say my family has loved every recipe I have made from your site.

    • Brooke says:

      Oh, you should follow her! She’s magical! In the meantime, thank you! I’m always delighted to hear my recipes work in other people’s kitchens! Phew!

  17. Tovah says:

    I enjoy your blog but have never thought you were like PW. I’m sorry you got such a nasty email but I hope you move on. You can’t make everyone happy and some stranger on the internet is not who you should worry about making happy anyway.
    As far as a sell out–that would be jealousy talking. Wouldn’t we all like to cook so well that we win trips to fun places and money?
    And as a semi-related tangent have you read The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio? It actually made me think of you because you are always entering contests. I enjoyed it (although I wouldn’t have wanted that lady’s home life!) and it was really interesting to get that perspective on contests in the 50s and 60s.

    • Brooke says:

      Oh, that book. It is purely gorgeously inspiring. I loved the movie version, as well. It’s just uplifting and beatiful all in one. You sweetheart. Thanks for your comment!

  18. Liesl says:

    Hey, thanks for being you. Thanks for not calming down, because you bring a bright, uniquely-you spot to the blogosphere!

  19. aunna says:

    You are amazing and I look forward to reading your new posts every day. They truly brighten my days and give me some great ideas of fun things to feed my family, but you also just have this way to make me laugh. Don’t listen to the ONE bad email. Keep up the good work! Thanks.

    • Brooke says:

      Oh, you sweetheart. Thank you. And I’m everlastingly brightened by all of you sweet gals who stop by Cheeky Kitchen and offer advice and insights. So, thank YOU! Hugs!

  20. Nicole says:

    haha…. I think I’m at a loss for words… but don’t worry, I had someone tell me I’m not PW before too. My question… why do they think you (or I) are copying her….

  21. Kalyn says:

    Love your response to the snarky e-mail. Some people have a hard time realizing that there perception of the world is not everyone else’s reality. Life is just too short for all that negative energy over what someone else is doing!

  22. Kalyn says:

    And since I’m a retired teacher, I am now mortified that I wrote “there” instead of “their.” So consider this a correction!

  23. Vanessa says:

    Wow, this guy sounds as immature as the people at my high school. You are fricken awesome, this is why I love you, good food plus witty commentary. Keep on girl :)

  24. Anne says:

    Is it a full moon? That seems to draw out the uh know what in people. I love PW and but I love your blog as well. The internet is a big place. There is lots of room for lots of people. If the person like you posted doesn’t like your blog, then they should move on.

  25. Wendy says:

    wow… someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, didn’t they? The first true sign that your blog is doing something right: haters.

    Love the recipes, keep them coming. Don’t forget, you can’t use vegetable oil on those chaps, makes the leather smell funny.

  26. Angie says:

    If I had of got that email, I would have taken it completely seriously. I so wish I had the power to laugh stuff off and let it roll off my back like you. That’s a gift! That person is so terrible, they’re trying to just bring you down. Keep up your good work, your so incredibly inspiring.


  27. Carrie says:

    You know you’ve reached a wonderful level of success when some random crabby-patty has to rain nastiness on your parade. You are so lovely and are much loved by many, many, many.

  28. Elise says:

    Thank you for referencing chaps and basset hounds at the end of your post. I giggled at the email but I snorted at that last line. I love it when people don’t take themselves too seriously. :) Thanks for making our days a little bit brighter.

  29. Goodness gracious, these look great!

  30. Debby says:

    Somebody is jealous? I mean you did just win that fab baguette bouquet! :) Really so much to be jealous of – you’re beautiful, creative, have that adorable husband AND chihuahua, fantastic kids, delicious food(I totally crave those caramel apple popcorn balls and that strawberry chicken salad with cilantro dressing year round!), and you’re so kind and bubbly! I come here for pure sunshine – I always find it in your writing and recipes!

    P.S. Love the recipe, can’t wait to see your recipe for the buns! The slider buns I found at the store – ick!

  31. Brooke… Hilarious. It always amazes me that people actually take the time to write messages like this. Bravo for not getting your feelings hurt. ;)

  32. Kristine says:

    Wow. I personally have no idea where Benji023 is coming from. Benji023 takes themselves way too seriously and seems to think their opinion is much more important than it is. It seems pretty simple — you don’t like a blog, don’t read it. I really enjoy cheekykitchen. Love the recipes — and I do make them. I also read PW and make her recipes. You are both food bloggers. Lots out there. The only similarities I see is that you are BOTH great food bloggers. Ads? Everybody has them. I don’t think yours are distracting. And we have all seen blogs where they are distracting. However, most of us are too busy to write critical comments about them. I enjoy your product references. I want to hear somebody else’s opinion about what works, ideas to try, etc. There is a place for constructive criticism, but Benji023 is just downright rude and way off base. Cheekykitchen feels like a friendly chat with a friend or neighbor. Thanks for sharing with us.

    • Brooke says:

      What a great comment, Kristine. Thank you so much for sharing. I totally agree that ads rarely bother me on other people’s sites. We all gotta make it somehow, right? Hugs!

  33. Colleen says:

    What a jerk! Seriously! What good does he think his email will do?

    He obviously needs a good hug and really good meal to appreciate the wonderful simple things in life. I am surprised that anyone that reads Anne of Green Gables would be such a wanker. It seems that it would be opposite.

    Hopefully this email did not ruin your day. I love your blog. It makes me smile.

    • Brooke says:

      I pretty well spit my soda across the room after the fifth sentence there. Touche, my dear. That is the truest truth I’ve ever heard!

  34. I’m a big ground turkey fan these days. It takes on stronger flavors like blue cheese so well!

  35. Rebecca says:

    You are awesome!

  36. anna says:

    what an a$$. i hope he chokes on something, because rude people just make life worse for the rest of us. except you, who are great at laughing them off. and these sliders look fabulous.

  37. Colleen says:

    A couple of days late to the party…but I liked Betsy’s comment about Warm Fuzzies and Cold Pricklies. I ran a Vacation Bible School program where we read about Bucket Fillers and Bucket Dippers. Bucket Dippers try to fill their buckets by dipping into other people’s buckets. But, you can never fill your own bucket by dipping into someone else’s! You, my dear, are a Bucket Filler of the first degree! Thank you for all your positivity and delicious recipes.

  38. […] want to make these turkey, bacon, & bleu cheese sliders (@ Cheeky […]

  39. Janae says:

    Dear Benji023:

    We can choose what blogs we read. If you don’t like the blog. Don’t read it. You don’t have to be rude or jealous that perhaps your blog didn’t take off.

    Cheeky blog lady, thanks for your personality and blog. I’ve just recently discovered it!

    Thanks again,


  40. […] Cheeky Kitchen: Turkey Bacon and Bleu Cheese Sliders […]

  41. First of all….what is up with that letter?!? Some people…

    But, on to more positive and happy things like SLIDERS! How can you not love a mini-burger…especially when it involves bacon, blue cheese, and spicy mustard! Love the addition of quinoa too ;)

    This recipe is so fun I had to include a link to it on my slider blog today!

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  43. Pulguitas says:

    glad you guys had a safe and awesome trip!!talked to your sweet and exeitcd sister yesterday..next weekend wow, can you believe it?!?! and the whole time you were gone i was thinking about how i’ve been asked a million times if i was named after a beatles song because my name is abby lane abby road/penny lane thus the confusion. i should have just gone along with it i might have been a little bit cooler..

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