In honor of one of the greatest -- National Burger Day -- we're sharing some our favorite alternative burgers for when you're in the mood to shake up your normal beef and cheese routine.
Throw just about anything between two pieces of bread, and we're sold. But burgers are particularly special -- there's something about forming patties that feels refreshingly old-school, that reminds us of the great satisfaction that comes with serving a dinner you've made with your hands.
In these recipes, we use ground beef, chicken, turkey and fish. Don't be afraid to use interesting seasonings, or think outside the box when it comes to bread. And we're strong believers that a good, thoughtful sauce makes all the difference. No matter which variation you chose, relish (ha) in the joy of eating with your hands, too, and don't forget extra napkins! Cook, relax and enjoy!
sriracha black bean burgers Made with black beans, soy sauce and sesame seeds, this burger has won over even our toughest meat-loving critics. Could be thanks to the Sriracha that seasons both the patties, as well as the special sauce that we spread on the toasted brioche buns. Topped off with cilantro sprigs and marinated cucumbers, these burgers are a hearty, oh-so-satisfying vegetarian meal in themselves.
quinoa veggie burgers with kale chips First, cannellini beans get mashed into the patties providing added protein and structure. Second, sharp white cheddar gets folded in for melty pockets of savory satisfaction. And, finally, the caramelized onions make every bite irresistible. Oh yeah, this recipe makes four, count ‘em, four big burgers so you can feed a crowd or take a burger to work for lunch tomorrow.
buffalo sloppy joes with celery and blue cheese dip Potato rolls catch a delicious beef sauce spiked with brown sugar and a little vinegar. We whipped up a creamy blue cheese dip for celery stalks, which provide a much-welcomed, refreshing bite to all that meaty decadence.
greek chicken burgers with tzatziki These chicken patties are filled with flavor, texture and color: softened and slightly sweet onions, sautéed spinach, and chunks of feta. But we couldn’t stop there. So we sandwiched them between mini pretzel buns and made a light tzatziki cucumber salad with dill and more feta. Make sure to spread some of the yogurt cucumber salad onto the buns. It’s all the sauce you’ll need to make this a truly delicious chicken burger.
hoisin turkey burgers with green beans with ginger & garlic Jenny Rosenstrach, our favorite weeknight dinner guru, has shared a delicious meal for Mother’s Day. She loves Mother’s Day not so much for breakfast in bed and flowers but because it means spring is well under way and the grill is open for business. Since not everyone has a grill, we cooked these ultra-flavorful turkey burgers under the broiler, which provides direct heat just like a grill. On the side you’ll find crisp green beans seasoned with fragrant ginger.
meatloaf burgers and rice with cucumber salad These mini meatloaf burgers are bursting with savory goodness thanks to Worcestershire sauce and smoked paprika. Grated onion mixed in with the ground beef makes for moist and juicy patties. Our favorite part? When the rice soaks up the meat, still sizzling from the pan. Dijon mustard mixed in with ketchup makes for a sweet sauce with a little bite.
horseradish-dill salmon burgers in lettuce cups with avocado aioli These burgers pack plenty of omega 3s, and get their vibrant flavor from horseradish, dijon mustard and fresh dill. A creamy avocado aioli stands in as the special sauce, and lettuce replaces the bun for a refreshing crunch. A slice of heirloom tomato on the side rounds out this dish and gives it a beautiful burst of color.
Illustration by Laura Manzano