Get ready to enjoy all the goodness of a burger, but in a lighter form with my Burger Bowl recipe! Satisfy your burger cravings without the heaviness of a bun. The special sauce, reminiscent of the iconic Big Mac sauce, perfectly ties everything together, making it an excellent drizzle for any salad.
If you're a fan of one-and-done salads that offer a well-balanced meal, like my Black Bean and Corn Salad or Roasted Chickpea and Vegetable Salad, then get ready to fall in love with Burger Bowls or cheeseburger bowls. This delightful dish is ideal for meal prepping since you can prepare the beef, sauce, and chop all the vegetables in advance. When it's time to eat, simply assemble, and you're good to go!
Why You Will Love This Recipe
✅Healthier Option: Burger bowls, or cheeseburger bowls, offer a healthier alternative to traditional burgers by eliminating the bun and reducing the overall calorie and carb content while also allowing the flexibility to add in extra vegetables, increasing the nutrient and fiber content. For a leaner meat option you can substitute with ground chicken or turkey.
✅Easy to Prepare: This dish couldn't be easier to prepare. Only minimal cooking is involved and the rest is only a bit of stirring and chopping.
✅Versatile: Burger bowls can be highly versatile, allowing you to customize toppings, sauces, and protein choices to suit individual preferences. This flexibility makes it easy to cater to various dietary needs and tastes. Technically this recipe is for a cheeseburger bowl but you can easily leave out the cheese for a dairy free option.
✅Meal Prep Friendly: The recipe's meal prep aspect is a big plus for those with busy lifestyles. Being able to prepare the components in advance and then assemble the burger bowl quickly makes it convenient for on-the-go individuals or families.
✅Balanced Meal: Burger bowls are typically designed to be well-balanced meals, incorporating proteins, a variety of vegetables, and healthy fats. The best part about this recipe is you can switch up the ingredients to suit your own needs.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Lean ground beef can be substituted with extra lean beef or ground chicken or turkey. You can also cook burger patties and cut or break them up for your bowl.
- Mayonnaise can be switched up for Greek yogurt, low-fat mayonnaise, or a vegan mayo for an egg-free and dairy-free option.
- Relish can be replaced with finely chopped pickles.
- White onion in the sauce can be replaced with green or red onions.
- Dijon mustard can be substituted with yellow mustard or grainy mustard.
- Romaine lettuce - use any other leafy greens like spinach, kale, or mixed greens.
- Tomatoes - instead of tomatoes you can use sliced bell peppers or cucumber.
- Pickles can be substituted with pickled jalapenos if you like a bit of spice or skip them altogether if you're not a fan.
- Red onion can be replaced with sweet, white or green onions.
- Aged cheddar cheese can be swapped with any other type of cheese you prefer, such as Swiss, gouda, or blue cheese.
For a complete list of ingredients see the recipe card below.
Additional Burger Bowl Topping Ideas
- Fried onions
- Any of your favourite cheeses, grated or cut into cubes, for the best cheeseburger bowl.
- Bell peppers
- Beans, lentils or chickpeas
- Quinoa, rice, or other grains
- Pickled onions or other pickled vegetables
- Avocado or guacamole
- Artichoke hearts
- Burger patties - vegetarian, chicken or turkey
- Fresh herbs such as dill, parsley, or cilantro
How to Make a Burger Bowl
Step 1. Make the special sauce. - Combine the special sauce ingredients in a bowl and stir well. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use
Step 2. Cook the ground beef - In a saute pan, over medium-high heat, cook the ground beef with seasonings until no longer pink.
Step 3. Boil off excess liquid - If the beef has released a lot of liquid continue simmering for a few minutes or until the water has evaporated and only a small amount of oil remains in the pan.
Step 4. Transfer beef to a bowl - Using a slotted spoon, transfer meat to a plate or bowl lined with paper towel, draining off any excess oil.
Step 5. Assemble your burger bowl - Start with a bed of chopped or shredded lettuce then build your bowl with chosen toppings. Drizzle with special sauce and serve.
For detailed instructions see the recipe card below.
Use Burger Patties: Does the rest of the family want traditional burgers? That's an easy fix! Cook up burger patties and break one apart for a burger bowl.
Season the Meat: Season the ground beef with your favorite burger seasonings like salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. This will add depth to the flavor of the burger.
Experiment: Don't be afraid to experiment with different combinations of ingredients and flavors. Burger bowls are versatile, so feel free to get creative and discover your favorite combinations. Try drizzling your burger bowl with this Easy Ranch Dressing for a twist.
Make it lighter: For an even lighter version of a Burger Bowl use a low-fat mayonnaise or Greek yogurt for the special sauce and opt for leaner meat such as chicken or turkey.
Yes, absolutely! Burger bowls are versatile, and you can use various proteins like chicken, turkey, salmon, shrimp or even plant-based options like veggie patties or tofu.
Yes, burger bowls are great for meal prepping. You can prepare the protein, sauce, and chop the vegetables ahead of time. Store the components separately in the refrigerator and assemble the bowls when ready to eat.
You can use veggie burger patties or marinated tofu as a protein option for vegetarian/vegan burger bowls. Load up on fresh vegetables, and use plant-based sauces and dressings.
More Recipes Using Ground Meat
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoon ketchup
- 1 tablespoon relish
- 2 tablespoon minced white onion
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon dijon
For the meat
- 500g (1 lb) lean ground beef
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 4 cups romaine lettuce chopped or shredded
- 1 tomato diced
- 2 large dill pickles sliced
- ¼ small red onion thinly sliced
- ½ cup aged cheddar cheese shredded
- In a bowl, mix together the Special Sauce ingredients. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.¼ cup mayonnaise, 2 tablespoon ketchup, 1 tablespoon relish, 2 tablespoon minced white onion, 1 teaspoon vinegar, ½ teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon dijon
- Prepare the toppings and refrigerate until ready to use.4 cups romaine lettuce, 1 tomato, 2 large dill pickles, ¼ small red onion, ½ cup aged cheddar cheese
- Heat a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add beef, garlic powder, onion powder, and Worcestershire sauce. Stir until thoroughly combined.500g (1 lb) lean ground beef, ½ teaspoon onion powder, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, 2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until meat is no longer pink. If the meat has released excess water continue boiling until it has evaporated, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Transfer meat to a paper towel-lined dish using a slotted spoon to remove excess oil.
- Assemble the bowls starting with the lettuce. Then top with ground meat and toppings. Drizzle the special sauce over the bowls or serve on the side.
Cooked ground beef can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for 3 days.
Special Sauce will keep, covered in the fridge, for 2 weeks.
Chopped lettuce and tomatoes will keep in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. The lettuce may start to brown on the cut edges. Nutritional Facts are an estimate only. To reduce fat and calories use light mayonnaise and extra lean ground beef, chicken or turkey.