Gearing up for a Labor Day cookout? Go beyond the traditional burger bun and generate excitement with a selection of specialty burger buns (also, a selection of burgers—beef, bison, turkey, veggie, etc.). Here are our favorite options:
Bakery Rolls. Check your local bakery. Those that make good bread often make delicious hamburger rolls.
Batard. Wider than a baguette and pronounced buh-TARD, this crusty French bread can be pre-sliced into burger-size. Here are the different types of baguette-like breads.
Biscuits. You can turn refrigerated biscuit dough into homemade burger rolls. See the recipe below.
Brioche Buns or Challah Buns. Our personal favorite! Eggy yeast breads with rich with a soft, fluffy texture, both deliver rich flavor. They are best for smaller patties and lighter ingredients, so the bun absorbs the juices, but doesn’t fall apart. The difference between challah and brioche: Brioche is made with lots of butter and is richer; challah, which is made to be kosher parve with all meals, has no dairy ingredient.
Gluten Free Buns. All health-conscious people, including those with this option, will appreciate tis option. Gluten-free rolls from Rudi’s and Udi’s are so delicious, you can’t tell that they’re gluten free..
Potato Rolls. Typically made with mashed potatoes, these rolls are characteristically soft and light, yet durable.
Pita. We have a fondness for lamb burgers in pita, but look for a thick variety since the pita can break.
Portuguese Sweet Rolls. A refreshing burst of sweetness against roasty meat. Look for the King’s Hawaiian brand, which makes hamburger and hotdog rolls in addition to dinner rolls and other styles.
Pretzel Rolls. A sturdier bun, pretzel rolls are ideal for meaty burgers topped with many ingredients.
Skinny Buns. Those watching their carbs will appreciate this lighter replacement option. These are sold under different names. Skinny Buns is one brand; among others, Pepperidge Farm makes Deli Flats.
Whole Wheat Buns. Those watching their carbs will appreciate this lighter replacement option.
LIGHTER BURGER OPTIONS
If you’re hosting a crowd of calorie counters, Chef Leo from Grecian Delights, maker of Skinny Buns, shares his three favorite “lighter burger” recipes:
The Kickn’ Cow. Beef burgers made with lean beef, stacked with shredded lettuce, tomato and Zesty Greek Yogurt Feta Dip on a toasted 100% Whole Wheat Skinny Bun.
The Swiss Bird. A turkey burger topped with Swiss cheese, lettuce and tomato on a toasted 100% Whole Wheat Skinny Bun.
The Ultra Vegetarian: A veggie burger layered with hummus, lettuce, tomato, red peppers, green peppers and red onion on a toasted Multigrain Skinny Bun.
Switch the sweet ketchup for a spicy salsa, avoiding the high fructose corn syrup or other sweetener.
RECIPE: BURGER ON A BISCUIT
Make your own burger biscuits with refrigerated biscuit dough. This recipe is from Pillsbury, and there’s also a hot and spicy version with jalapeño, Jack cheese and chipotle mayonnaise.
Prep time is 10 minutes, total time is 30 minutes.
Ingredients For 8 Burgers
2 pounds lean (at least 80%) ground beef
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
8 slices American, Cheddar, Swiss or other cheese
1 can (16.3 ounces) Pillsbury Grands Homestyle refrigerated original biscuits
Make your own burger rolls from refrigerated biscuit dough. Photo courtesyPillsbury.
Toppings: lettuce, tomato slices, onion slices, pickles, ketchup and mustard
1. HEAT gas or charcoal grill. In medium bowl, mix beef, salt and pepper; shape into 8 patties.
2. PLACE patties on grill over medium heat. Cover grill; cook 10 to 12 minutes, turning once, until meat thermometer inserted in center of patties reads 160°F. Place cheese slices on patties to melt. Keep warm; reduce heat to medium-low.
3. SEPARATE dough into 8 biscuits. Spray both sides with cooking spray. Place biscuits on double thickness of heavy-duty foil. Place foil on grill over indirect heat. Cover grill; cook 4 minutes; turn. Cook 2 to 4 minutes longer or until biscuits are golden brown.
4. SPLIT biscuits in half. Place burgers on one half of each biscuit; top with desired toppings and remaining biscuit half.