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Jul 11, 2010 03:05 PM

Vegetarian burger help

I have been fairly impressed with some of the fake meats that are available now. I've made great stir fries and some pretty good "meat" sauces.
But I have yet to find a good burger. There are some which are tasty, but very vegetabley ...filled with beans and corn...more a vegetable patty but not a burger substitute. (the tastiest if messiest I've had of that sort is at "the Counter" fwiw) I'm looking for something with more of the mouth feel of meat. I'd love to find a frozen or refrigerated premade brand rather than making it from scratch, but if it would really fill my occassional craving for a beef burger, I just might try it.

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  1. I doubt you will find one that really fills a craving for a beef burger. I know I haven't. The boca grillers (all american flame grilled is the full name, I think) seem to get highest marks from most of my veg&n friends. There a nice vehicle for toppings and so make a decent patty type of sandwich.

    3 Replies
    1. re: debbiel

      I don't think vegetarian food should try to directly imitate meat products; it is only setting you up for failure.

      If you are truly craving a burger, I've had success feeding vegetarians and vegans a bunch of my homemade clove-spiced pickles on a toasted bun with all of the general burger accompaniments (ketchup, onions, etc). The sizing of pickles adapts better to smaller buns than large ones. Sometimes I make them as a quick snack for my non-vegan self.

      It's much better to make the star of a dish something good that isn't meat than trying to simulate it.

      1. re: monocle

        Ten years ago, I would have agreed that it was a recipe for failure. Fake meat tasted and chewed like a slab of gluten. But the fake meats that I find lately in non-burger form are actually pretty good. Chicken strips in particular are amazingly close to the right mouthfeel. Beef strips are close but a little mushy. Ground beef makes a meat sauce that my husband (who still eats beef) can't tell apart.

        But the boca burgers and such, just haven't cut it.

        I was hoping someone had stumbled on a brand that made the next quantum leap the way that the other fake meats have done. I don't even need to go so far as the juicy drippiness of a rare beef burger (though it's the ideal-and it's really the main thing I miss), even the meatiness of a comparatively dry turkey burger would do.

      2. re: debbiel

        I have found that the Boca flame grilled are the best beefy substitute for a burger, if doctored properly -- a good sharp cheese, and BBQ sauce instead of ketchup, plus all the regular burger fixings.

      3. Amy's Texas Burgers aren't bad. They have a nice smoky taste and the mouth feel is closer to beef than any other veggie burgers I've tried. Still, you know it's not the real thing.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Isoldamay

          Second that - Amy's Texas Burgers are acceptable and pretty good, 'specially if you load 'em up with sauteed mushrooms and cheese and the such.

        2. Morningstar Grillers Prime do the trick for us. NOT the regular Grillers, just the Prime.