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How to make a tasty paleo-friendly burger?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created October 25, 2012 at 8:25 PM

One of my favorite foods(aside from pizza which cannot be done in a paleo-friendly way since the crust is so crucial to it) is burgers. I'd like to make a paleo-friendly burger and the answer may seem to be as obvious as just throw away the bun (and ketchup too since it contains sugar). I've tried this when making burgers at home and have found that I don't seem to like burgers as much without the bun, as if it's that which makes it a burger.

Maybe my cooking skills just need improvement though to make the burger more interesting even without lots of bread. Any ideas to make a really great tasting burger (I do use cheese, BTW)?

How it's being cooked or seasoned is probably one of the things I'm doing wrong. I don't really know much about seasoning and when I cook ground beef it does seem to be rather tasteless and boring compared to restaurants.

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:22 PM

I'll try mixing an egg in - I'd heard about that as a binder but never thought about how it would enhance the taste. I'd done Paleo for several months when I first encountered it though after moving from an area with very simple grocery stores and no restaurants to bigger city I've been having trouble maintaing Paleo and part of that is probably due to being bored with paleo food. When I had been doing Paleo consistently for more than six months I have to say the appeal of SAD foods never faded in the slightest for me. It's probably because I grew up on a very SAD based diet-very high carb.

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:15 PM

Eating a bun a couple times a week would definitely hurt me - I've found that I'm allergic to gluten and any exposure causes at the least a skin reaction. People also underestimate how massive of a gluten and refined carb dose the average burger bun is. Even in small burgers from fast food chains the bun is AT LEAST 3 times the volume of the meat itself. Buns usually start at 50g of carbs though are often more.

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:12 PM

Juicy Lucy sounds very good. The mustard burgers sound really interesting, especially with the garlic mixed in.

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:07 PM

An egg on a burger (I'd assume runny yolk?) is an interesting idea. BBQ sauce could be interesting but I always thought BBQ sauce was heavy in sugar (like ketchup)? I love the lamb burger idea though unfortunately I can't make it since stores here (in the USA) don't really carry lamb (I've tried to get it, most people in this area have never even eaten lamb).

Eed7dabde3d61910685845e04605267f

(2934)

on October 26, 2012
at 06:56 AM

Looked up 'Juicy Lucy's'- 'only in America' :). I don't intend to offend anyone btw...

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on October 26, 2012
at 02:16 AM

-1 for offering an opinion, phrased like a fact, that doesn't answer the question at all.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on October 26, 2012
at 12:18 AM

Agreed. Particularly when eating out, just eat the bun assuming you're not celiac or have a wheat allergy (that's most folks).

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13 Answers

best answer

1
61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11048)

on October 25, 2012
at 10:33 PM

Mustard burgers - salt, pepper, chopped garlic, minced onion, and whole-grain mustard

Juicy Lucy - cheese sealed between two thin patties of meat seasoned with salt & pepper

Ortega burgers - roasted green chilies, salt, pepper, garlic, and onion, topped with Monterrey jack

Taco burgers - chili powder (I prefer Anaheim and poblano), onion, garlic, salt, pepper, seeded & dice tomato (I've also used tomato paste when I didn't have fresh tomatoes)

Ham & cheese burgers - like the Juicy Lucy, but with thinly sliced ham and cheddar or swiss cheese

Moroccan burgers - cinnamon, cumin, garlic, onion, salt, and pepper

I get four burgers out of one pound of meat.

I use the same basics and just make meatloaf if I have something else to throw into the oven that takes some time to cook.

Eed7dabde3d61910685845e04605267f

(2934)

on October 26, 2012
at 06:56 AM

Looked up 'Juicy Lucy's'- 'only in America' :). I don't intend to offend anyone btw...

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:12 PM

Juicy Lucy sounds very good. The mustard burgers sound really interesting, especially with the garlic mixed in.

2
76211ec5301087de2588cfe3d6bccba9

(1178)

on October 25, 2012
at 08:36 PM

use a portabella mushroom or make sweet potato pancakes for buns

1
C2f4e82d716f2e8d659650b356aa88f6

(80)

on October 26, 2012
at 03:19 AM

I mix in eggs when I'm making burgers. One egg per one pound of burger. Pre-shaped patties from the store taste awful to me, and I think the lack of egg has a lot to do with it. Adding salt and pepper is a must, too.

Also, maybe try cooking them on the stove as opposed to grilling them. Keep them covered for most of the cooking time, and you'll end up with super juicy burgers. Plus you can saute veggies in the fat they leave behind. Mmm...

Red bell peppers are another easy bun substitute.

How long have you been Paleo? After about six months, eating a bun became about as appealing as eating a sponge, to me. You might just need more time to adjust.

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:22 PM

I'll try mixing an egg in - I'd heard about that as a binder but never thought about how it would enhance the taste. I'd done Paleo for several months when I first encountered it though after moving from an area with very simple grocery stores and no restaurants to bigger city I've been having trouble maintaing Paleo and part of that is probably due to being bored with paleo food. When I had been doing Paleo consistently for more than six months I have to say the appeal of SAD foods never faded in the slightest for me. It's probably because I grew up on a very SAD based diet-very high carb.

1
3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on October 25, 2012
at 08:35 PM

Personally I use high quality meat with only salt and pepper -- nothing else. I like my burger to taste like burgers.

Then I put my effort in sauces and accompaniments.

Right now I am in love with:

Bacon and egg cheddar cheese burger. I put a pico-de-gallo style salas on the side.

BBQ burger with BBQ sauce, grilled onions, and coleslaw

Lamb burger with mango-mint salsa

Big Kahuna Burger -- with grilled pineapple, fire roasted tomatillo salsa and a tomato-ginger ketchup.

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:07 PM

An egg on a burger (I'd assume runny yolk?) is an interesting idea. BBQ sauce could be interesting but I always thought BBQ sauce was heavy in sugar (like ketchup)? I love the lamb burger idea though unfortunately I can't make it since stores here (in the USA) don't really carry lamb (I've tried to get it, most people in this area have never even eaten lamb).

0
319cdfcd8ec0467f34a3c5aeb2a5e045

on October 26, 2012
at 07:18 AM

1.Local grass-fed beef, so I can get away with leaving it pink in the center 2. Thick-cut pepper bacon 3.A Trader Joe's avocado sliced on the top (The only ones I can find that are consistently perfect) 4. Good cheese if you're ok with dairy, no big deal leaving it off

Cooked on a Traeger Grill and served over salad (If any local restaurant had a grill like that I'd be their best customer. Meanwhile I use my father's every time he's not looking )

Bun, Schmun! Anything that nice deserves a knife and fork anyway :P

0
Eed7dabde3d61910685845e04605267f

on October 26, 2012
at 06:58 AM

If you really want something bread like, you could make this: http://freetheanimal.com/2012/07/fat-bread-third-times-the-charm-mission-accomplished.html

Can't say I can vouch for it though...

0
5e816d3249fd4bceb096d4ae7183df1a

on October 26, 2012
at 04:24 AM

My favorite way to have burgers is pan fried with a red wine reduction sauce. It's similar to this recipe, but with burgers instead of steak and a lot less butter: http://www.rachaelraymag.com/recipes/rachael-ray-magazine-recipe-search/dinner-recipes/panfried-steak-with-red-wine-butter

I usually make the burgers first, then the sauce in the same pan so you don't lose any of the deliciousness that sticks to the pan.

Some tips to make burgers tastier:

  • mix salt into the meat when making the patties (1 tsp per 1.5 lbs)
  • put a divot in the middle so it cooks evenly
  • don't over cook it (about 3 min per side on med-high heat)
  • use a cast iron or stainless steel pan

0
E17fe88b98575c183241fba50ae42b93

(398)

on October 26, 2012
at 01:42 AM

My favorite way to make burgers...well I have a couple. For the meat, if I'm not feeling fance, I usually season with just some salt, pepper, minced onion and garlic, and slap them on the grill. Lately, I've been doing stuffed burgers too. Probably one of the best burgers I've had was stuffed with sauteed garlic, onion, bacon (with bacon grease) and blue cheese. Also, can't go wrong with just stuffing the patty with a nice hunk of butter. Ridiculously good!!

For the bun, I just use a couple leaves of lettuce or cabbage, or we bake some portobello mushroom caps.

0
20cc903ebccaeb1e652da3a596e8dfb4

(1038)

on October 26, 2012
at 12:37 AM

Watch some Youtube vids on how to make fried plantain sandwiches. Plantains make amazing buns. Super tasty when smashed, fried, and salted. Also, in case you're wondering, There are pizza dough recipes using coconut flour that IMHO are tastier than wheat crusts. The texture is even almost perfect. The one I use calls for shredded cheddar though, so milk avoiders beware.

http://heavenlyhomemakers.com/coconut-flour-cheddar-drop-biscuits

Just make this recipe and flatten it out to make a crust. Actually, thinking about it, you could totally make these and use them as buns. But they're a little dense and might be too filling as a bun...I may try it out soon though.

0
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on October 26, 2012
at 12:19 AM

Salisbury steak or hamburger steak is awesome. Pan fried with some sauteed onions/spinach/muchrooms, roast root vegetables on the side, with some mayonnaise/mustard/blue cheese.

0
F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on October 25, 2012
at 11:57 PM

Wrap the burger in romaine lettuce leaves. Stuff with bacon, avocado and tomato.

0
Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on October 25, 2012
at 10:50 PM

For something less harmful, one could always make the bun out of rice flour (which is typically used in gluten free breads). Not optimal, but better than being glutened by wheat.

One could also mix in some almond flour, so long as it didnt overpower, if one wanted to.

The sauce could easily just be a mix of salt/sweet fruit/tomato (say, pineapple, onions and tomato). Or whatever.

I have found the nice part of pizza is the toppings. The bread is unnessasary to me. So I just make loads of pizza toppings, on ham steaks, capcicuns or whatever. Yum.

Sandwhichs or burgers not so much. I dont really miss them, but I might make some wheat free bread one day for a treat. But then just eating bits of salad type things, along with some meat is still nice shrugs One could always make a burger by sandwiching some salad instead of two bits of meat too. Never tried that. I think part of the fun of burgers is the ease of ingredient/taste mixing.

Just be aware you may be just increasing your hunger for unhealthy foods by emulating them.

-2
59fa7cd87fb9d669adf21e5cf3e7ada5

on October 25, 2012
at 08:41 PM

Just eat the bun, eating one bun a couple times a week isn't going to hurt you.

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on October 26, 2012
at 02:16 AM

-1 for offering an opinion, phrased like a fact, that doesn't answer the question at all.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on October 26, 2012
at 12:18 AM

Agreed. Particularly when eating out, just eat the bun assuming you're not celiac or have a wheat allergy (that's most folks).

68ccdddf5069cff7bc3b988623b89a4c

(0)

on October 28, 2012
at 10:15 PM

Eating a bun a couple times a week would definitely hurt me - I've found that I'm allergic to gluten and any exposure causes at the least a skin reaction. People also underestimate how massive of a gluten and refined carb dose the average burger bun is. Even in small burgers from fast food chains the bun is AT LEAST 3 times the volume of the meat itself. Buns usually start at 50g of carbs though are often more.

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