Low cal burger grillin’

We fired up the grill for the first time in 2012 tonight … one of my favorite parts of summer. I love burgers. A lot.

Here’s the problem; a typical fast food burger or restaurant burger can run 800-1200 calories. Crazy land. Doing a regular burger at home, with a great bun, and cheese, can still run around 500-600 calories at a minimum. Add a hundred calories to that if you like mayo on it instead of ketchup. That’s my entire meal calorie count and I’m a two burger kind of guy.

Here’s how I do it …

Switching to turkey can cut the meat calories in half. Using the 97% fat free can result in a patty around 100-200 calories (depending how large it is). I love easy and the Jenny-O frozen 1/3lb patty is only 160 calories. It’s huge, and tastes great.

Pre-sliced cheese ranges 60-120 calories a slice (once again, depending on size). That’s a lot of calories for just a little bit of food. Kraft has a whole line of fat free sliced cheese ranging 25-30 calories a slice. I use one slice, just for flavor.

The bun is also a big deal. A tiny regular bun is around 110-150 calories, but it’s small. A man size bun ranges 180-250 calories. That’s a lot. Weight Watchers has a great, large bun that’s only 130 calories, but looks like one of the ones that has twice as many calories. It’s also whole wheat, and full of dietary fiber. Good stuff.

Going with those three options creates a large burger for 320 calories. If I have it handy, I’ll load it up with vegetables – the calories are almost negligible, makes it huge, and adds a ton of flavor. A little bit of ketchup, mustard (almost calorie free), or fat free mayo, and I’m done. If I budget my calories for the day well, I can have two burgers and then for my side either a salad or steamed veggies. That’s a MASSIVE meal for around 700 calories. For a guy my build, that’s a WIN. I’m stuffed, and for less calories than one traditional burger.

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