Burger alternatives


by Great Day Houston Staff


Posted on April 19, 2013 at 7:21 AM

Updated Friday, Apr 19 at 7:23 AM

Buffalo Burger Recipe


2 pounds ground bison (buffalo)

2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh sage

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons black pepper

1/2 onion, finely chopped

2 Tbsp vegetable oil


Sauté the onions in the olive oil over medium-high heat until translucent. Turn off the heat and let it cool.

When the onions are cool enough to touch, use your (clean) hands to gently mix them in with the bison burger meat, and add everything else. Do not overwork the meat, it will result in a tough burger. Just gently fold it until the onions, sage, salt and pepper are well mixed in.

Form patties with the meat, using about 1/4 to 1/3 of a pound of meat per patty. Here's a tip on making the patty: if you press a slight indentation in the center of each patty it will help keep the burgers in a nice disk shape when cooking. Otherwise the burger will start to get a little egg-shaped as the edges contract from cooking.

Grill or fry the burgers on medium heat, about 6-7 minutes per side, less or more depending on the thickness of the burger and the heat of the pan/grill, or until the internal temperature is 140°F for medium rare, or 160°F for well done. A note on internal temperature. If you are getting the ground meat from a source you trust (we got ours from Whole Foods) that does their own grinding on site, or you grind your own meat, you can safely cook the burgers rare or medium rare. Otherwise you'll want to cook the burgers until well done. Don’t press on your burgers while cooking, and keep the flipping to a minimum. Let the burgers rest about 5 minutes before serving.


Sweet Potato Burgers


1 large sweet potato

1 tbsp plus 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 cups cooked cannellini beans or 2 (15-oz) cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

2 tsp favorite spice blend, such as cajun or curry powder

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 cup almond flour

5 oz mixed salad greens

1 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced

Tahini Dressing

2 tbsp tahini paste

Juice and zest of 1 large lemon

1 garlic clove, minced


Make the burgers: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a small baking sheet with foil.

Using a fork, prick deep holes all over the sweet potato. Brush it with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil. Season generously with salt and black pepper and bake until completely soft, 45 to 50 minutes; a knife should easily slide through. Let it cool until you can handle it.

Peel the sweet potato and place the flesh in a medium bowl. Add the beans and mash the potato and beans together with a potato masher or large fork. Season the mixture with the spice blend, cayenne pepper, and salt and black pepper to taste.

Stir in the almond flour and shape the mixture into 8 patties.

Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large cast-iron pan and brown the patties until crispy and golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes per side.

Make the dressing: In a small bowl whisk together all of the dressing ingredients until smooth. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. 

Assemble the burgers: Place the burgers on a bed of greens and top each one with a few slices of avocado. Drizzle a little tahini dressing over each burger and serve immediately. You may also add your favorite burger toppings such as caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, or your favorite burger condiment. Any leftover sweet potato mixture can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.


Chickpea Burger


1 small onion, finely diced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 carrot, peeled and cut into chunks

2 cloves garlic, peeled

1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves (add more herbs like dill, mint, and basil for a different flavor)

1.5 cups cooked or canned chickpeas (if canned, be sure to rinse off the can-slime!)

1/2 cup bread crumbs

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground coriander

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat.

Add the diced onion and saute, stirring occasionally, for five minutes, until soft and translucent. Remove from heat and place onions in a large bowl.

In a food processor, blend carrot, garlic, parsley/herbs, and chickpeas until smooth. Add chickpea mixture to the bowl with the onions and mix to combine.

Add bread crumbs, salt, coriander, and cumin to the chickpea mixture and mix until fully combined.

Spray a baking sheet with olive oil spray or brush with olive oil. Form chickpea mixture into 4 patties about 3 inches across and 1/2 inch thick. Place patties on and baking sheet and use a pastry brush to brush patties with remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until they begin to turn golden brown. Serve warm with tzatziki sauce and tabbouleh.