These loaded burger bowls have all the juicy flavor you crave, but none of the bun. This low-carb dish is keto-friendly, but delicious to enjoy on any diet. Even kids will enjoy loading their own burger bowls with their favorite toppings, making this an easy dinner the whole family will enjoy!
What are they?
Burger bowls are not burger salads served in a bowl, like my Big Mac salad recipe. Instead, what we are doing is forming the raw hamburger patty into a bowl shape, then piling in all of your favorite flavors of a burger and baking it to juicy perfection!
Hamburgers are most commonly made from ground beef, but you can substitute other meats. Venison burgers are always a crowd-pleaser, otherwise, ground turkey is a great option for anyone cutting calories.
How to make the bowl
I find the easiest way to form your bowls is to use a muffin pan. The wells in the pan will help the burger mixture hold its shape without falling apart, and you can expect the meat to shrink while cooking, which makes it easier to remove from the pan.
When making traditional burger patties I constantly am reminding people not to overwork the meat, or you will have a tough and dry burger patty. However, working the meat is unavoidable when crafting these into a small bowl, and actually preferred because you want the meat to hold together well. This gives a chance to really create some flavorful ground beef, so I add Worcestershire, garlic powder, salt, and pepper prior to forming. Feel free to add onion powder and chili powder too if you like!
Burger Bowl Toppings
Your low carb burger bowls can be filled with any of your favorite burger toppings. Of course, this is only limited to your imagination. Here are some ideas:
- Onion - Raw, sauteed, or caramelized onion are all great options. Red onions or yellow onions both work.
- Pickles - Bread and butter, or dill pickles are both delicious.
- Tomatoes - These will not bake well, so I recommend adding them prior to serving.
- Mushrooms - Make sure to saute them first to release their juices.
- Crumbled bacon - I prefer regular cut rather than thick-cut for this dish.
- Jalapeno - Lightly sauteing chopped jalapeno is better than using fresh pepper.
- Cheese - Any of your favorite cheeses will work well.
Without a bun soaking up any rogue juices, I find condiments are not needed to enjoy these. However, there is nothing wrong with using them! I recommend drizzling the condiments prior to serving. Any of these suggestions would work great.
- Mustard - Yellow is the classic choice, or go with Dijon for more of a gourmet flare.
- Homemade Burger sauce - Make your own special sauce designed for burgers!
- Big Mac Sauce - This is a great way to enjoy one of your favorite burger flavors at home.
- Ranch dressing
Burger Bowl Ideas
You want to make this burger bowl recipe but perhaps you are not sure which of your favorite fixings to work with? Try out any of these flavor combinations using traditional burger toppings to make a great tasting burger bowl!
- Bacon cheeseburger - Crumbled crispy bacon, sautéed red onion, chopped pickles, sharp cheddar cheese.
- Mushroom and Swiss - Sautéed mushrooms, sautéed onion, shredded Swiss cheese.
- Jalapeno popper burger - Chopped and sautéed jalapenos, a dollop of cream cheese, Monterey Jack cheese.
- Bacon and Blue - Crumbled bacon, blue cheese, sautéed red onion.
Expert tips and tricks
- A good burger will use ground beef anywhere between 80/20 to 90/10. The leaner the beef, the less it will shrink while cooking. 80/20 is typically best for making juicy burgers, but 85/15 is the sweet spot for these bowls. I avoid extra lean ground beef for burgers because it will be too dry.
- Use can use wild game, or any other meat you would enjoy crafting a burger with.
- Most veggies should be sautéed prior to adding into these bowls. You don't want them expelling liquid while baking and filling up your burger bowl with pooling water.
More Burger Inspired Creations
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- 1 pound ground beef (85/15 is recommended)
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup sautéed onion
- ¼ cup crumbled bacon
- ¼ cup chopped pickles
- ½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Crumble beef in a large bowl and add Worcestershire sauce and seasonings, then work together with your hands.
- Once combined, work the beef into each well of a muffin pan until it forms a bowl. The meat will shrink slightly while cooking so I recommend ensuring the beef raises higher than the lip,
- Fill the bowls with the toppings of your choice, such as onion, bacon, and pickles. Then top with cheese.
- Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven, let cool for 5 minutes and serve.