Wednesday, March 6, 2019

The Beyond Burger® ...Featuring Vegetarian Pesto Burger with Balsamic Mayo #beyondburger #meatlessmonday #vegfriendly #sponsored

I was recently introduced to a revolutionary new meatless, plant-based protein burger: The Beyond Burger®. This burger patty is the first 100% plant-based burger that looks, tastes, and cooks like a traditional beef burger. Each 4-ounce patty provides 20 grams of healthy, filling protein! What Beyond Burger® doesn't have are GMO's, soy, or gluten. Beyond Meat has identified four main reasons to choose plant-based meats instead of animals: (1) improving human health, (2) positively impacting climate change, (3) addressing global resource constraints, and (4) improving animal welfare. If I can use a product that tastes great and provides that much positive impact? Count me in!

I was very eager to give Beyond Burger® a try in my kitchen. I used it to create my delicious Vegetarian Pesto Burger with Balsamic Mayo. This burger is bursting with big flavor from herbal pesto, a seasoned Beyond Burger® patty, vine-ripe tomato, sautéed shallots, fresh mozzarella, and a quick homemade balsamic mayo. The Beyond Burger® patty was seared outside...and juicy inside. The texture of the cooked Beyond Burger® was very close to a traditional meat burger, and it tastes great! This burger makes eating meatless simple -- we try to eat vegetarian one or two days per week, and Beyond Burger® will definitely help us stick to our healthy eating goals!

Vegetarian Pesto Burger with Balsamic Mayo
a Weekend Gourmet Original
Ingredients (makes two burgers):
  • 8-ounce package Beyond Burger® patties 
  • 1/2 large shallot, coarsely chopped
  • Two small Kaiser rolls
  • 1 tbs. + 1 tbs. avocado oil [NOTE: can use olive oil]
  • Two small Kaiser rolls
  • 2 tbs. Italian seasoning blend
  • Two 1/2-inch slices fresh mozzarella from 8-0unce ball
  • 1/4-inch slices vine-ripe tomato
  • 1/2 cup refrigerated ready-to-use pesto
For the balsamic mayo:
  • 1/2 cup good-quality mayo [NOTE: I use Duke's mayo]
  • 2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning blend
Step 1: Make the balsamic mayo. Add the mayonnaise, balsamic, and Italian seasoning blend to a small bowl. Whisk until ingredients are completely combined. Store the mayo in the fridge until you're ready to assemble the burgers.
Step 2: Sprinkle one side of the Beyond Burger® patties with 1 tbs. of the Italian seasoning blend. Heat a large non-stick skillet over med-high heat. Add 1 tbs. of the  oil and sautee the shallots, stirring every few minutes for even coloring. Move the sautéed shallots to the top of the skillet. Add the remaining tbs. of oil and place the Beyond Burger® patties in the skillet, seasoned side down. Sear on med-high heat for 3:00. While the burgers sear, season the top halves with the remaining tablespoon of seasoning.
Step 3: Carefully flip the Beyond Burger® patties and place half of the sautéed shallot on top of each patty. Top each patty with a round of fresh mozzarella on top of the shallots. Cover and cook until the cheese begins to melt -- 3-5 minutes.
Step 4: Assemble the burgers. Use a serrated knife to cut each Kaiser roll in half -- lightly toast if you like. Spread some of the balsamic mayo on the bottom half of each Kaiser roll. Add the shallot and mozzarella-topped Beyond Burger® patties. Add a slice of tomato on top of the burger. Finally, spread 1/4 cup of pesto on the top half of the bun before placing on top of the burger. Then? It's time to eat!
As this interior shot of the sliced burger shows, the Beyond Burger® patties cook up juicy inside, with a red interior. No worries...that's how they're supposed to look when cooked! This burger has so many layers of flavor and texture. We loved these robustly flavored burgers from the first bite! Beyond Burger® even passed the Picky Husband Test...Michael gave the flavor and texture a thumbs up, and he said he's definitely eat them again. 

Great taste and great cooking results mean Beyond Burger® is going to be in regular rotation in my dinner menus. I can't wait to try Beyond Sausage® next! They come in Hot Italian and Brat Original links. They're really versatile, so I see myself using them in pasta dishes, topped in a bun...etc. To find Beyond Meat products in the Meat aisle of a grocer near you, visit their handy online Product Locator tool.

Disclosure: Beyond Meat sent me samples of their Beyond Burger® and Beyond Sausage® products for recipe development connected with this feature. All opinions are solely my own.

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