A different sort of vegetarian burger in Earth Fare’s Mushroom Rice Burger (gluten-free)

Earth Fare Natural Mushroom Rice Burger
Earth Fare Natural Mushroom Rice Burger

Product: Earth Fare Natural Mushroom Rice Burger – $3.99+

I have fallen into a veggie burger rut.  That sounds strange…I know.  But it’s true.

The marketplace for gluten-free veggie burgers is booming.  And I’m happy about that, because as a gluten-free vegetarian, sometimes I just want to have a good veggie burger.  And many of the ones I have tried have been awesome.  Some have been better than others.  Despite being one of the more pricier ones, I absolutely can not step away from Amy’s Kitchen Sonoma Burger.  It’s delicious.  And one of the more sane ones when it comes to nutrition.

You might recall my run-in with the epically off-the-chain deliciousness of Sunshine Burgers…but the calories and fat content in them totally derailed my moment of joy.

It’s hard to find decent gluten-free, vegetarian food that isn’t laden with high calories and a lot of fat.

But, one day while shopping at my area’s newest grocery store, Earth Fare (I call it Earth Joy because it makes me happy!), I stumbled across their house brand of veggie burgers in the freezer section.  As I was on my last Amy’s patty, I figured…why not try something else?  And with a quick glance at the nutrition information, I felt so much better about this selection than any of the ones that have come before it.  Now, I just had to hope it tasted as good as it sounded.

Earth Fare Natural Mushroom Rice Burger
Earth Fare Natural Mushroom Rice Burger

The veggie burger I chose this time around is Earth Fare’s Mushroom Rice Burger.  And when I removed it from the freezer last night to cook up for dinner, what I loved seeing was the bits of rice that are actually part of the burger.  You can also see the various vegetables that are incorporated into the patty itself.  Love that.  In fact, the Mushroom Rice Burger is composed of portobello and button mushrooms, onions, carrots, red and green peppers, black olives, potatoes, and garlic.  Organic brown rice is added to that flavorful mixture, and they are seasoned with wheat-free organic tamari, sea salt, garlic, and some herbs.

A single burger is the serving size, but for once, the nutrition facts on the back of the box didn’t send me throwing it back in the freezer.  One patty is only 90 calories (I think this is the first gluten-free veggie burger I’ve had that is under 110 calories) and contains only 1.5 grams of fat (THIS IS A FIRST!).  It is a lean burger that is low fat, gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO, and free of saturated fat.  The sodium level is very low (290 mg).  And one patty contains a whopping 8 grams of protein.  Love that.

Last night, because I had some red onion, local bibb lettuce, and some tomato on hand, I decided it was time for another veggie burger.  So, I busted out the Earth Fare Mushroom Rice Burger to cook up and give a try.  I put it in my skillet to cook and heat through.  This was actually very easy to do.  I just made sure that it wasn’t cold anywhere in the middle, and flipped it a couple of times until it was nice and golden on the outside and warm throughout.

As I am out of my gluten-free hamburger buns, I have been opting to sandwich my burgers in…gluten-free bread.  I happened to only have one slice left of my Glutino Genius bread, so I did sort of an open-face burger thing in lieu of getting more gluten-free bread or some gluten-free buns.  I threw a slice of Veggie Slices Provolone Flavor cheese over it to melt down.  Then, I plated it with the fresh vegetables and sat down to enjoy.

My first order of business was to get a piece of the burger itself, with no veg or bread.  Why?  Because I really wanted to see how it tasted, unmarred by the flavors that accompanied it.  One bite…and I fell in love.  This veggie burger is packed with amazing flavor.  All organic.  All delicious.  I haven’t been this impressed by a veggie burger in a long time (especially one that is at least a little more nutritious for me to eat!).  Gluten-free veggie burgers are becoming a little more common, but these…these not only have the best nutritional stats of any that I have tried, but they were moist and rich with flavor.  All of the vegetables, the rice, the seasonings…they all mingled and mixed to form this perfect bite of a burger.

I’m not ashamed to admit that I hoovered it.  Just completely devoured it.

Yes…it is that good.

I have noticed that Earth Fare markets are opening up throughout the country.  If you have one nearby, I encourage you to go inside and try some of what they have to offer.  It’s a great little healthy supermarket.  And I have fallen in love with their selection (especially for someone like me!) and their products.  Their very own brand of veggie burgers has now become my absolute favorite.  Now…how’s that for amazing?!

Earth Fare Natural Mushroom Rice Burger, topped with melted non-dairy provolone cheese, bibb lettuce, and tomato
Earth Fare Natural Mushroom Rice Burger, topped with melted non-dairy provolone cheese, bibb lettuce, and tomato

Recipe: Grilled Portobello Mushroom Burgers

You know…with all the produce that I get delivered right to my door, it’s amazing I talk myself into buying anything else while out at the grocery store.  However, for some reason, I had the urge to make portobello mushroom burgers this week.  I have plenty of produce to use already, but no…these just had to be made.  I had made up my mind already in my head and all I needed were organic portobello mushroom caps…which my local grocery store happened to have.

The rest…was inspired by a recipe on Pinterest…which I then deviated from to work with the fresh veggies and items I had on hand in my fridge.  So…here is the recipe…

Recipe: Grilled Portobello Mushroom Burgers

Grilled Portobello Mushroom Burger
Grilled Portobello Mushroom Burger

Servings: 2
Time: Prep 10 minutes; Cook 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 portabello mushrooms, cleaned and gills removed
  • 2-1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoons soy sauce (I used San-J Reduced Sodium Tamari)
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 6 grape tomatoes, sliced into rounds
  • 1/4 roasted red pepper, chopped
  • 1 ounce goat cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (I used Galaxy Mozzarella Rice Shreds)
  • 2 leaves romaine lettuce
  • 2 buns, split (I used Schär Gluten-Free Sandwich Rolls)
  • butter for spreading on buns


Directions:

Heat grill to medium-high heat.

Combine balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, olive oil, garlic powder and onion powder in a small bowl.  Pour over mushrooms, tossing a few times, and let marinate for 10 minutes.

When grill is nice and hot, turn heat back to medium and grill mushrooms for about 5 minutes each side.

During the last 2 minutes of grilling, throw buttered buns on just long enough to heat through, melt butter, and impart a nice grill mark on bread.

Remove mushrooms and bread from grill.

Place tomatoes, peppers, goat cheese and mozzarella cheese inside portobello cap.  Place in a hot pan and sprinkle water inside.  Cover to allow cheese to melt.  Remove from pan.

To assemble the burger, place romaine lettuce leaf on bun, then top with the vegetable and cheese topped mushroom.  Place top of bun on top and enjoy!

~*~*~

I handed this over to my burger-loving, meat-eating roommate and she took the first bite.  Her exact words were, “This tastes like a burger.  If you didn’t tell me it was a portobello mushroom, I wouldn’t know!”

Awesome.  I must say, the marinade does make all the difference when it comes to eating something like mushrooms.  This was a fantastic burger to dine on.  I added a little kick to mine buy spreading each bun with some Koops Arizona Heat mustard.  It was a really delicious and healthy dinner.  And it’s very easy to make and assemble too, which is even better.

Love mushrooms? Or looking for an alternative to red meat?  Give this one a try.  Honestly…it was SO good.