Naked Burgers

So for dinner (Slow Carb Diet day 8, yeah it’s skipped a few because saturday was cheat day and I was working late on tuesday night), we had naked burgers or rather burgers without their buns. I had my first food photography class (Pat was so excited it was very cute) and afterwards we stopped by Trader Joe’s for dinner ingredients. I was really craving a burger and well because we couldn’t have the buns our regular burgers (bareburger, shake shack, lyric) were out of the question. So I decided to make my own burgers, minus the buns. Okay so I may have been able to plate it better, but we were really hungry…I’ve made burgers before and it was pretty simple. It’s basically ground meat seasoned with salt and pepper and then shaped into patties and cooked. Well today I wanted to make them differently and I added some onions, kind of like the burgers they have back in Japan. In Japan, we have two kinds of meat patties, hamburgers and hamburge, the hamburgers are your classic american hamburgers. The hamburge on the other hand is missing the bread.

If you google it, the hamburge will look like this:

See? It has no bun, but a pretty great tasting sauce. Well anyway aside from the little cultural experience you may or may not have had, I basically tried to recreate it. I just made the burger patties like I usually do and used the toppings as a side dish. We had bacon (real bacon!), avocado, grape tomatoes, and some sautéed mushrooms and spinach.

So let’s get started!


– 1 lb ground beef (I used 96% lean, but I recommend at least 80%. The burger patties were a bit dry because there was no fat to keep it nice and moist)
-1 onion
-1 garlic clove
-salt and pepper to taste
Toppings (basically anything you want on your burger):
Mushroom and Spinach Sauté:
-mushrooms (1 carton)
-spinach (half a bag)
-salt and pepper to taste
-4 tbspn unsalted butter
-soy sauce (optional)


  1. Mince the garlic and the onion. In a large mixing bowl, combine the minced onion, garlic, ground beef, salt and pepper. Divide the ground beef mixture into four equal parts and shape them into patties. Don’t forget to make a shallow dent in the center of the patty (it will swell up while it’s cooking and allow the patties to maintain their shape).
  2. Heat some olive oil in a large pan at medium heat. Once the oil is hot, carefully slide in two patties (you don’t want to overcrowd the pan). Cover with a lid and let the patties cook for 5 minutes. Remove the lid and flip the patties. Cook until it’s well browned. Repeat with the other two patties. If you are using cheese, place the cheese on top of the burgers after they’re flipped so that the cheese is nice and melted by the time your burger is ready.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a small pan and slice the avocado. Prepare your other toppings and if you want to use hamburger buns, lightly butter them and toast them in the broiler (but keep an eye on them or they will burn).
  4. For the spinach and mushroom sauté. Melt the butter into a medium sized sauté pan. Once the butter is all melted, add the mushrooms, salt and pepper and cover with a lid. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the lid and stir the mushrooms. Add in the soy sauce and stir until well combined. Add in the spinach and cook until it just begins to wilt (no more than 2 minutes).
  5. Plate everything and you’re finished!

2 more days until I’m officially done with this diet. Pat and I came to the conclusion that unless you made ALL your meals, this diet isn’t too bad. However if you do have to eat out, it’s really difficult (I think we may have had chipotle almost everyday for lunch). I know my lunches always ended up being a salad of some sort and while it was delicious, it wasn’t very filling.

Hugs and puppies!



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