Craving A Burger?

By Michele Robert Poche

Try One of These Healthy Alternatives to Red Meat

Hamburgers.  They’re available on just about every corner.  They’re a staple on most family dinner tables.  And, well, sometimes there’s just nothing better than a good, old-fashioned burger.  Well, except when you’re looking out for your health.

According to the American Heart Association, red meat has more cholesterol and saturated (bad) fat than many other foods that can be used to create amazing substitutes for the classic burger.  Even if you are doing a Keto or Paleo diet, you will want to pay attention to healthy fats.  If your burger contains red meat, make sure it is lean Angus.  If you don’t want to switch cold turkey, try cutting your red meat with one of these substitutions.  No one says you have to go all in at once. 

Beans
Black beans, lentils, chickpeas and fava beans (the last two can be used to create falafel) all make great substitutes in burger patty recipes.  And bonus!  They’re higher in fiber and lower in calories.

 

Veggie Burger  
Easy to find on menus and grocery shelves, veggie burgers are more popular than ever.   But beware of ingredients like canola or corn oil, caramel coloring and hydrolyzed protein as they negate the nutrition.

 

Fish
Heart-healthy and chock full of omega-3 fatty acids, salmon, tuna and amberjack all perform well as filets on the grill.  Or they can be chopped and combined with other ingredients to make patties (see recipe).

Salmon Patties…Made Easy

  • 15 oz. canned salmon
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup whole grain flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons lemon juice
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 cups butter
  • ¾ cup panko breadcrumbs
  1. Blend first six ingredients in a bowl and shape into patties.
  2. Coat both sides evenly with cornmeal.
  3. Fry patties in melted butter on medium until brown (5 minutes per side). 

Keep fish from sticking AND give it extra flavor by grilling it between two large slices of onion.  Little to no oil is needed so you’ll save calories and fat.  And be sure to preheat your grill for faster, more even cooking (15 minutes for gas and 30 for charcoal).   

 

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