Nutrition Tips

Adding Flavor and Nutrition to Your Favorite Burger – by Holly Swee, RD, LN

Posted on May 15, 2024

Grilling season has arrived, and May is National Hamburger Month! Burgers are easy to make, delicious and can offer essential nutrients! Here are some tips on getting the most nutrition and flavor out of a meal we can all enjoy this summer!

Choose Your Protein: Burgers can be prepared with a variety of proteins. When choosing a protein, be sure you are comparing ground products with the same lean to fat ratios. I recommend a 90% lean ground beef product. It provides enough fat for flavor and juiciness, yet you still get all that high-quality protein including 10 essential nutrients such as iron, zinc and many B-vitamins. Remember to form the ground beef into 4-oz patties as they will shrink to about 3-oz during the cooking process. Use an instant-read meat thermometer to determine doneness. Cook burgers until 160 ͦF.

Savory Seasonings: Of course, tried, and true salt and pepper are perfect to enhance flavor; however, consider adding some fresh or dried herbs as well as aromatics such as garlic or onion to the burger for a punch of extra flavor!

Pile On Veggies: Vegetables provide a variety of nutrients and fiber that our bodies need daily. Try including these veggie suggestions. Lettuce, spinach, tomato, onion, sliced cabbage, cucumber, or radishes. The sky is the limit!

Add Richness: There are a variety of rich and tasty toppings that offer flavor and some fat. Fats are essential in small amounts and help aid in the absorption of other nutrients as well as providing the body satiety. There are a multitude of cheeses and flavored oils that are tasty. Sliced avocados also can add delicious freshness and flavor. Expand your horizons and try adding something new!

Pick Your Whole Grains: Whole grains offer fiber and other essential nutrients. When choosing a bun, look for the amount of fiber in the product. If you want to be adventurous, forget the bun and slice the burger along with the veggies on a bed of your favorite whole grain product, such as brown rice or buckwheat.

Pair Nutritious Sides: Round out your meal with a side of fruit or dairy product for a nutrient-rich meal that will keep you and your family going through the day!

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