Ultimate Spicy Green Chile Hamburgers

Chances are you’ve had your share of hamburgers this summer – from the good, like the juicy patties grilled on your backyard barbecue, to the tasteless (you know, the ones that come in a 30-pack that are served at large get-togethers – plastic cheese melted on top). It’s time to mix up your burger repertoire!

We’re constantly experimenting with burgers around our house. New toppings. New mix-ins. New meat (turkey burgers are my favorite). Looking for burger inspiration? I’ve got a few ideas and a tasty recipe to get you started.

The Restaurant Swipe

Our version of Burger King‘s once-popular Rodeo Burger is my oldest daughter’s favorite. The burger is topped with fried onion rings and barbecue sauce. For a healthier option, use sautéed onions and for a quick fix, use French’s fried onions (no baking required).

Max & Erma’s fan? Do your own improvised Caribbean Burger by topping your grilled burger at home with a slice of fresh or canned pineapple, and then mix a little honey and mustard into some mayo to smear on the bun top.

The Leftover Redo

Leftovers can make for some crazy burger toppings: Reinvent yesterday’s pasta into a mac ‘n cheese burger. Throw coleslaw onto the bun instead of serving it to the side. Grill a slice or two of ham and serve it along with the cheese as a burger topping. Leftovers inspired our green chile burger – the night before, we’d made a spicy sauce for enchiladas. We reheated the sauce, then used it on burgers with Monterrey Jack cheese melted on top.

Don’t forget to raid the fruit and vegetable drawer for ideas, too! Try out a mango burger by adding a few slices on top – or maybe go for a little more Mediterranean feel with thin-sliced cucumbers, red onion a little splash of red wine vinegar and maybe even some hummus.

The Fish Burger

Try something new not just with the burger toppings, but with the kind of meat you use. Ferndale’s The Flytrap restaurant has a salmon burger that’s easy to make at home. Detroit’s top-rated Nemo’s Bar has the same burger on their menu. Fish burgers are in!

Turkey, chicken, pork, sausage, can all be crafted into patties and grilled up for your hungry crew.

Have you tried out a crazy burger idea at a recent barbecue or even at a nearby restaurant? What’s your take on reinventing this summer barbecue favorite?

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