Summer means burgers on the grill, and just because you might be vegan or vegetarian, or simply want to go plant-based for a meal, doesn't mean you have to forego this favorite American cookout food! While there are more and more cruelty-free BBQ options popping up, these are my two favorite substitutions to the traditional beef or turkey burger.
The recent unveiling of The Beyond Burger by Beyond Meat boasts it is perfect for those non-meat eating individuals who want a more beefy consistency in their veggie burger, complete with "blood" - courtesy of beet juice. I'll admit, at first, the thought of a vegan burger that acted more like a real meat burger grossed me out. If I wanted my food to bleed, I would just eat animals. But I don't, so I was hesitant to give these burgers a try.
But, boy, am I glad I did. The Beyond Burger definitely beats the more common (and drier) black bean burgers popular in restaurants and the frozen food aisle. On the grill, these meatless burgers are fabulous, and I enjoy experimenting with the toppings. Here, I topped my burger with lettuce, tomato, and avocado and served it with a side of grilled zucchini.
TIP: Since I really didn't want a vegan burger that "bleeds," I grilled mine for five minutes on each side, instead of the recommended three minutes. The burger is still juicy and delicious, and leftovers warm up nicely the next day.
My second favorite "burger" is a grilled portobello mushroom. Simply brush each side with olive oil and season with salt and pepper before grilling. This one is topped with tabouleh, lettuce, and Follow Your Heart pepperjack vegan cheese.
TIP: Make sure you cook the mushroom all the way through, otherwise it will be tough (up to ten minutes on each side, depending on thickness.)
Finding tasty vegan or vegetarian alternatives is getting easier and easier, and I love hearing from people who give these options a try - even if just for "Meatless Monday."
Have a good topping suggestion for me? Please let me know in the comments section.
Read more of my Going Vegan series here.