Best summer burgers are healthy and delicious
By Krissy Eiben
With patriotism in our hearts and fireworks in our eyes, we’re all fixing to light up the barbecue and party on the 4th of July.
The smoky scent of charcoal will fill the air and almost like a smoke signal it will guide you to your next shindig with family or a few close friends.
As I plan a party menu for a grand function like the Fourth, I want simple and snappy so I can get out there, have a glass of wine and enjoy everyone’s company. I also want a healthy meal with amazing flavor and ingredients, so all of my guests go home satisfied.
Here are two of my favorite burger recipes that can effortlessly be prepared hours before everyone arrives or whipped up the night before so you can take them with you to a picnic in the park. They are sure to get everyone in a tasty mood to celebrate.
“BEEFY” Popeye Burger
1lb of “lean” ground beef
½ cup chopped fresh spinach
¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
½ cup quick cooking oats
1/3 cup onions, minced
1 tbsp of finely chopped flat
2 cloves of garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Combine first four ingredients in a large bowl, chopping spinach into small pieces.
2. For the rest of the ingredients you can either chop/mince the old fashioned way or you can toss them all into a processor like the “Bullet” (my new favorite gadget).
3. Give it a few good pulses then combine with beef.
4. Grab a tray that will fit into the freezer and line it with wax paper or parchment paper.
5. Form into palm size patties, larger than the buns (they’ll shrink on the grill).
6. Put in freezer for 1 to 2 hours prior to grilling. Makes 6 patties.
7. Grill to perfection, 5 minutes per side or until you reach your crust of choice.
Tip: test to see if your tray fits into your freezer before putting patties on it – you’ll thank me after you spend an hour re-arranging your mixed vegetables and last year’s birthday cake you saved while your patties sit on the counter.
Tip: If you are not grilling the same day, once patties have hardened transfer to freezer bags to avoid the “burn” and they’ll be ready when you need them. For those poultry lovers try this recipe:
Rockin’ Turkey Burger
1lb of ground turkey (I prefer
½ cup well drained canned
2/3 cup Italian style shredded
1 tbsp finely chopped flat leaf
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried thyme
2 cloves garlic, minced
Sprinkle of salt
1. Mix turkey and egg together adding in the cheese.
2. Take your drained diced tomatoes and chop them into finer pieces either using a good old knife or using the same trick with the processor adding the remaining ingredients at the same time.
3. Blend well with mixture; a fork works better than your hands at this point, almost whipping it.
4. Grab a tray lined with wax paper or parchment paper.
5. Form into palm size patties, and freeze for 1 to 2 hours prior to grilling. Makes 6 patties!
6. Grill 5 minutes per side or until desired doneness is achieved.
Serve burgers with whole wheat buns and some fixings like a nice swiss or spicy pepper jack cheese, sliced tomatoes, red onions and lettuce.
Add a tossed green salad on the side or potato chips for the barbecue traditionalist and you’re good to go!