What I Ate: Nacho Burger

I feel like a genius. I created an amazing burger out of nowhere. I made burgers out of ground pork, taco seasoning,  and some salsa con queso.

The Three Bite Rule - Nacho Burger

Ingredients:
1/2 pound ground pork
1 tbs taco seasoning
2 tbs salsa con queso

Directions:
Mix the ground pork (or beef/chicken/turkey) with taco seasoning and salsa con queso.
The Three Bite Rule - Nacho Burger
Form into patties and grill
The Three Bite Rule - Nacho Burger
Top with sliced pepper jack cheese and some more salsa con queso!
The Three Bite Rule - Nacho Burger

This had some great spice and perfect cheesiness. I think the cheese sauce was a perfect way to keep the meat juicy. I served it with a vinegar based bean salad. We loved this one!

Onion Dip Burger

Grilling the best part of summer. Dontcha think? Or maybe it is the beach. I think food is best in the summer. I capitalize on burgers at home since not everywhere offers their delicious combos ontop a burger I can eat. I can make my own chicken, pork, turkey, etc burger at home. Let’s be honest, I’ve been all about the ground pork lately since it is by far the cheapest, and tends to not get as dry as turkey. Try it.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
This idea came from Ms. L long enough ago that she had forgotten about it. I didn’t. I heard onion-dip burger and was all about it! I modeled this one off my technique for ranch burgers.

Ingredients:

½ pound ground meat (I used pork)
1 container of onion dip
1 packet of onion soup mix
2 slices of cheese
3 tbs fried onions

Directions:

Mix the ground meat with the onion soup mix, and 1/3 cup onion dip until well incorporated.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
Form into patties and grill (or cook) until cooked through.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
Lightly warm fried onions in toaster oven or skillet.
Top burgers with cheese, onion dip, and fried onions.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
Enjoy!

The onion burgers were juicy and completely flavor packed. I’m salivating just thinking of them. They stayed together perfectly on the grill (unlike some of my stuffed burgers).

These are such a great treat and EASY way to amp up your regular burger. I think the dip as a condiment is perfect and the crunch from the onions was awesome. They do have a use other than green bean casserole!

When I heard about onion dip burgers I was going to top it with chips, like Bobby Flay’s crunchified burgers but the onions seemed like a fun but unexpected topping.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger

I do need to crunchify my next burger though.

What I ate: Cowboy Burger

I’ve made a few stuffed burgers and every time I make them I think of a new one! This time I did a cowboy burger with caramelized onions and cheddar cheese stuffed into the burger. I mixed in and topped them with barbecue sauce.
Three Bite Rule: Cowboy Burger
It was a a good combo and I think the barbecue sauce in the ground chicken was great touch to keep it juicy.

Bacon Wrapped Burgers

I was really excited for my menu for Mr. J’s birthday. My guy loooves a good burger so I thought about a bacon wrapped burger. I guess Birthday Burgers are a tradition now since I made stuffed burgers for his birthday last year.

I googled and saw a few that put bacon around the edge. That’s not good enough. I was thinking of weaving it to make a little bacon wrapping.
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It seemed like it would cook ok, it just might need to be secured with toothpicks (I recommend counting them to be sure they all come out). We strategized that getting the bacon crisped on the first side might help keep it all together before flipping.

Ingredients
2 burgers
strips of bacon (4-6 strips per burger)

Directions
Lay 3 strips of bacon and interlace 3 other strips in the opposite direction to form an L.
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Place burger on the bacon intersection. Fold the flaps over and weave them together.
bacon_burger_assembled_590_390Mr. J’s was a beef burger. I did ground pork. Though I didn’t eat Mr. J’s burger, I have to say I think the 4 strips of bacon is plenty (versus the 6 on his).

I served it with a cucumber ribbon salad. It was plain greek yogurt, dill, garlic, and pepper.
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I sliced the cucumber with a mandolin but was afraid to make them too thin. I figured not slicing my hand off was a good birthday present too.
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The burgers were reallllly good. I topped mine with swiss and Mr. J’s with American cheese. I think it was a fun meal.
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Now what kind of burger am I going to make for his bday next year??

Salmon Burger

I’m posting out of sequence so it might look like I’m eating bugers non-stop. Mr. J had some venison so I bought myself some fish. Salmon was on sale so that sealed the deal. If I’d been coordinated, I’d have made a pie for pi day so, happy 3.14!

I’m talking $2.68 for a POUND of salmon. That’s several servings. Whoa!
salmon burger_fish_590_390
I was doing to cook it in the oven with butter, lemon, & dill but then I had this strange hankering for a salmon burger. It came out of nowhere. I’ve never even EATEN a salmon burger before, but this was wicked good.

Ingredients:

½ cup panko breadcrumbs
¾ cup breadcrumbs
1 pound salmon
1 tsp dried dill
1 tsp lemon juice
1 egg½ tsp garlic

Directions:

Cut salmon off the skin
Add breadcrumbs, salmon, dill, and lemon juice to a food processor and pulse a few times until combined. (I was out of breadcrumbs so these are some homemade croutons becoming breadcrumbs).
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Mix in an egg and garlic by hand.
Form into patties & grill
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I served these with spinach, some tzatziki, and mustard on a grilled wheat roll. I liked the creamy component and thought the cukes, garlic, and dill of the tzatziki were really good with the salmon.
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I made 3 burgers out of it and really enjoyed this as something different. The other 2 are frozen and I’m sure will be a great surprise some night when I feel like there’s nothing for dinner.

It stayed together much better than I expected, but I did arm Mr. J with some super duty aluminum foil for the burger on the grill.

I wouldn’t ever order a salmon burger at a restaurant so I think this was a fun/easy one to make at home. I think if a restaurant is cooking my fish I’ll have them taking the tougher method.

Cost Breakdown:

1 pound of salmon: $2.68
breadcrumbs: ~$0.55
lemon for juice: $0.89
roll: $1.59
tzatziki: $0.41
total:  $6.12 (for 3 burgers) or $2.04 each!

Greek Stuffed Burgers

Way back when I made stuffed burgers. These were themed for Mr. J (blue cheese & bacon) but I had all sorts of plans for other fillings.
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It’s been quite awhile, but I made them again! This time I made a Greek inspired one and grilled it. Ohh my burger goodness. I filled them with feta and topped them with spinach, red onions, and cucumber. These burgers are delicious and great for something different.
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Hmmm. Sky’s the limit for burger toppings/stuffings. Maybe a cowboy caramelized onions/bbq sauce/cheddar stuffed burger will be next. Or maybe a Southwestern with Pepperjack cheese and salsa.

Veg Burg

I scoped out a whole bunch of veggie burger recipes but ended up just including whatever I remembered when I grocery shopped. These were good, but could have used more crunch. I love when I have control over my burger since I’m not a red-meat-eater and have fewer choices.
vegburg_done_290_200

Ingredients:

1 cup oatmeal
½ can black beans
1 eggplant, grated
1 cup panko
3 green onions, chopped
1 cup yellow onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tbs soy sauce
1 egg
salt & pepper

Directions:

Blend oatmeal until it becomes like a flour
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Drain and blend the black beans in a food processer
Saute onion and garlic until translucent
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Combine beans, onion, garlic, shredded eggplant, green onions,  soy sauce, egg, and S&P in a bowl and stir to combine.
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Form into patties and bake at 375 degrees for 10 min before flipping and baking another 10.
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I packed these for lunch this week and served it on a light English muffin (toasted) with cheddar and spinach on the burger. I liked these a lot. I think the eggplant and beans made it really sizeable and filling.

I think next time I’d add in some nuts or sunflower seeds. I think another grain might have been good. Barley? Rice? I’ll keep that in mind next time.
vegburg_done_290_200
I baked instead of frying or grilling since they’re not known to stay together well. I froze extras and think they’ll be a great find in the freezer once I’ve forgotten them at a time when I feel like there’s nothing for dinner.

Since you know, or have noticed, that I rarely bake so it may surprise you that I have a muffin top pan. I have never made muffins in it but love it for things like this! I use it all the time for anything patty shaped! Crab cakes, burgers, zucchini fritters…you name it. It is super handy. Once I have a kitchen with space, I’m sure I’ll bake more.

Stuffed Burgers

For Mr. J’s bday we had a multi-day celebration. Since his birthday was a weekday AND a Bruin’s playoff game, I knew it should be fun, quick, and something to psych him up for the game (as if he needed help getting excited)!
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I made stuffed burgers after having such success with the burgers on the grill pan inside. I see them on menus but of course they never seem to offer them as turkey or chicken so I can’t usually partake.

I made Mr. J a beef burger stuffed with blue cheese and bacon. I made myself a turkey burger stuffed with Monterey Jack and bacon.  SO good! They were also very easy.

Ingredients:

1/3 pound ground beef/turkey for each burger
2 slices of bacon, cooked & crumbled
2 tbs chopped, shredded, or crumbled cheese
2 rolls

Directions:

Form the patty with most of the meat for the burger. Reserve the last bit for the top.
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Add cheese and bacon.
Apply the reserve to the top of the filling while forming the sides to meet the top.
Grill on each side, covering if needed to cook through
stuffed_burger_cooks_290_200

He was happy to have ground beef at home for a change since I do everything in turkey or chicken. We both thought these were fun and want to try again too! I was thinking going Greek with feta and spinach would be great as well.

stuffed_burger_doneme_290_200stuffed_burger_donej_290_200

Ranch Burgers and Apple Slaw Apartment Style

You could pour ranch dressing on an Old Navy $5 pair of flip flops and it would make them taste good. I took a tastier approach and was so excited about my creation. I made Ranch Chicken Burgers and Zesty (mayo-less) Apple Slaw in my own kitchen…no party required!
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Ingredients:

¾ pound ground chicken
½ packet dried ranch dressing/dip mix
3 tbs ranch dressing
2 bulky rolls

Directions:

Mix ground chicken, ranch mix, and dressing
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BBQ or cook on a grill pan flipping once.
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Serve on toasted rolls with ranch dressing on top.
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Ground chicken and ground turkey are more likely to fall apart so don’t overflip! I took a tip from my pal Guy on Diners Drive-ins & Dives: I flipped them but feared they weren’t going to be fully cooked so I covered them and added a touch of water for some steam.

They were cooked perfectly! That is tricky without my trusty meat thermometer but I was so proud of myself. They were juicy and I definitely tasted the ranch.

I paired it with some slaw. This was awesome and is a nice alternative to creamy slaws. I put in some apple I planned to use otherwise but had on hand.

Ingredients:

3 cups shredded cabbage/slaw mix
½ gala apple, chopped into matchsticks
2 tbs olive oil
2 tbs veggie oil
¼  cup cidar vinegar
¼ cup sugar
1 tbs dijon mustard
dash red pepper flakes

Directions:

Heat oils, vinegar, sugar, mustard, and red pepper over medium heat just until warmed through.
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Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Toss with cabbage and apples.
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Refrigerate several hours and pour off excess liquid.
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I liked how light it was with a zesty crunch. This would be a great picnic or bbq item. I only made enough for 2 or 3 servings which was perfect.

Green or red onion would be a great add in and broccoli slaw would be great too. Shortly after making the burgers I made them again and Mr. J cooked them on a BBQ. Aside from our poor puppy not having a yard, not being able to use a grill is our biggest issue with this apartment and something we greatly look forward to enjoying in a house someday.

These made me super jazzed about other burgers inside. I can’t eat red meat so I miss out on fun ones at restaurants like stuffed burgers since they rarely come in turkey or chicken burgers. I’ll just have to make it happen! I have a feeling Mr. J would love a blue cheese stuffed one. I was thinking cheddar or spinach and feta stuffed. Stay tuned!