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Veggie Burger Fixins, Toppings?!?

  • j

I've been trying to get into eating veggie burgers at home. I've found a few brands I like and I've been eating them on sandwich rounds and there's just something missing. Lettuce and tomato and onion is just now doing it for me. I'm going with a honey mustard and light mayo too and it's not hitting the spot. What do you put on your veggie burger? What makes it sing?

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    1. re: escondido123

      I'm not avoiding cheese but I've found my standbys for sandwiches (muenster, swiss) aren't really doing the job either. I had a great veggie burger at Mariposa Bakery in Cambridge with gouda and it was wonderful. I just bought some gouda but haven't tried it yet. Do you have cheese suggestions?

        1. re: JS628

          gruyere with caramelized onions and sauteed mushrooms... or jarlsberg alternatively.

          1. re: JS628

            If you like spicy, I've recently fallen in love with a habanero jack. Soooo much more kick than pepper jack!

        2. I always put barbecue sauce and cheese on the bun. If I've got time, I'll also add very-grilled vegetables like red bell peppers, zucchini and red onions.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Jetgirly

            I love hot grilled portobello mushrooms slathered with a spicy and sweet bbq sauce then grilled again. The hot mushroom's juices flow into the charred bbq sauce and it's awesome.

            I also like making a vegan pesto and slathering that onto my mushroom burgers. I really do like them mushroom burgers. They're just so good.

          2. How about a great coleslaw with lots of shallot, fennel, cider vinegar and a little heat. Tossed with some may it can give a great crunch.

            2 Replies
            1. re: escondido123

              I like spicy sweet stuff like hoisin sauce or chutney. Or those bright red spicy chopped onions that come in Indian buffets. Pickle relish? Plum sauce?

              Try carmelized onions. Onion jam. Blue cheese and arugula.

              1. re: escondido123

                I like cole slaw as well. Crunch is precisely whats missing from veggie burgers.
                Sometimes I will add sliced pickles and radicchio.

              2. Try cubing and cooking it , then stuffing into a pita with tahini and/or hummus, chopped red onion, cucumber and tomatoes, and parsley.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Emme

                  Wow that sounds really good. Do you have a particular brand or recipe for the veggie burger you use for that?

                  1. re: Helvella

                    i kind of used to like Morningstar.

                    my personal method is often:
                    2 cups cooked barley
                    1 cup diced wild mushrooms (if you use dried, i like to let the moisture from the onions rehydrate them in the saute pan)
                    1/2 cup almost pureed onions
                    1-2 cloves garlic, finely diced
                    1 egg
                    1 cup ricotta
                    1 cup mozzarella or provolone
                    1/4 c parsley
                    1/4 - 1/2 c almond meal, sometimes more or less

                    saute pureed onion and garlic, just to take the bite off. mix everything together except the barley. then mix in the barley. the patties are sort of loose, and you can adjust the almond meal to a consistency you like. then just do em up in a pan, or in the oven at 375, and carefully flip them once.

                2. avocado! cheese! sauteed onions! i also really like ketchup. maybe some sprouts too.

                  1 Reply
                  1. I like veggie burgers and you're not going to like my response and maybe it gets deleted, but in a give and take approach I like a little bacon on mine, real bacon. I know that corrupts and derails and subverts the whole reason for going with a veggie burger in the first place, but cholesterol-wise, beats putting it on the beef version.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: hill food

                      I sort of think of veggie burgers as their own thing, not a meat-substitute, so for me, bacon is just fine. :)

                      Also: +1 on the avocado and spicy-sweet stuff; I like pickled ginger and wasabi mayo on mine, although it depends on the kind of veggie burger. I also play a lot with different salad dressings (Annie's has a ginger one that I'm really into right now). But honey mustard with sliced avocado and sprouts is my old standby.

                      1. re: hill food

                        I put bacon on mine too! It my one of my fave work lunches: veggie burgers w/the precooked microwavable bacon. Stick it all in the microwave. Makes a nice hot lunch.

                      2. I tried getting into veggie burgers during a diet and found that they always needed something. You already stated that lettuce, tomato and onion is getting old. I went with sauteed onions and usually added some type of hot sauce to them. If I didn't want to cook onions, I'd sometimes put salsa on it. Two other good choices that have already been mentioned are hummus and cold slaw.

                        1. Slices of cucumber with a dill-yogurt-shallot spread on the bun and a little feta on the burger.

                          1 Reply
                          1. For a long time, I used to use Goya Recaito. Just the right amount of moist and spice to liven it up a bit.

                            1. herbed goat cheese and sautéed onions ... mmmmmm

                              1. avocado, barbeque sauce, pickles. maybe jazz up the bread by rubbing a clove of garlic on it...

                                1. Fried eggs are really good on veggie burgers, especially with a bit of cheese and some hot sauce. I also like crispy fried shallots with mayo. A thin layer of hummus, with some tomato and hot sauce. Or a few onion rings (the breaded ones) with barbecue sauce. I also sometimes use a lightly toasted bagel, instead of a bun (especially if there is an egg involved).

                                  1. We use spinach, tomato, sauteed mushrooms, sprouts for crunch, blue cheese and spicy mustard

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: vein1

                                      Sprouts! Great idea. I am going to have to try it with some daikon sprouts.

                                    2. Caramelized onions and sauteed mushrooms, with a few fresh spinach leaves.

                                      1. I sometimes like to throw on a fried egg as well as the usual condiments.

                                        1. i love sweet potatoe mustard and spinach

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: LaLa

                                            Do you make your own sweet potato mustard, or do you buy it? If you make it, would you mind sharing the recipe?

                                          2. I make veggie burger Patty Melts.
                                            Rye bread with grilled onions and I saute the veggie patty with the onions and then place a cheddar and swiss cheese slice and dress it with some thousand island dressing..
                                            Grill it like a grilled cheese..OMG..its so good!

                                            1. Have you tried the Chik'n veggie burgers? I find that they have a lot more flavor (especially the spicy ones). You can also find curried veggie burgers (at Trader Joe's and other places) that have wonderful flavor built right in and allow for some creativity in toppings.

                                              I ditto the avocado, and to be perfectly honest, a good, herbed buttermilk ranch is what I usually put on my veggie burgers, and I find that it really hits the spot.

                                              1. This thread has inspired me to try to come up with something.
                                                I think a bahn mi style veggie burger with a daikon, carrot and cucumber pickle might be really tasty.

                                                1. These have been fantastic responses! I just tried a sauteed mix of orange bell pepper, mushrooms, onions, and jalapenos, with pepper jack and some low cal mayo. It was great. I'm pumped to try slaw next, then maybe hummus or the fried shallot idea.

                                                  A friend of mine gave me what might be great advice on this topic. She says a veggie burger is not a burger, it's veggies, so you should consider toppings that are more appropriate to a salad than to a burger.

                                                  Also, got this suggestion from a friend over email: would definitely try overloading the veggie masala with a ton of bhelpuri toppings.

                                                  You'd put the patty on a bun, lay down some yogurt, then splash it with tamarind chutney (http://www.nutsonline.com/cookingbaki...) and coriander chutney (http://www.nutsonline.com/cookingbaki...). Then sprinkle on some sev (http://www.spicesofindia.co.uk/acatal...) and whatever additional veggies you want (typical options would be fresh cilantro leaves, minced onion that has been set in water for a few minutes to reduce the harshness, and diced tomato). Then put on the top bun and eat it like a sloppy joe.

                                                  Oh and one more thing: bacon related idea are welcome in my book! I'm thinking of sauteeing in bacon grease at some point.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: JS628

                                                    whew, I'm glad that bacon thing was received well, I was expecting some blow-back.

                                                    the chutney-yogurt thing sounds good, I was at a multi-culti work picnic once and we ended up eating (ok lamb in this case) but coupled with a hot-sweet chutney brought by an Indian family couple with a cilantro based tzatziki brought by a Greek family slathered on Lebanese flatbread. awesome mix of flavors - hot/sweet/cool/crunchy/smooth all at once

                                                  2. House made pickles and chipotle ketchup... southwest theme. For cheese I like a good sharp cheddar, though the suggeston of Habanero jack sounds pretty good too.

                                                    1. Some of my fav toppings are (and not all together):

                                                      Sautéed mushrooms and onions
                                                      Crispy onions
                                                      Grilled eggplant
                                                      Goat cheese
                                                      Sun dried tomato
                                                      Hot peppers
                                                      Jalapeno Havarti
                                                      Roasted red pepper
                                                      Grilled pineapple

                                                      And yes, I like bacon too!!

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: pumpkinspice

                                                        Quick pickled red onions are a breeze to make and liven up a veggie burger with the texture and flavor.