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Vegetarian Burger

Updated on July 4, 2021

Portabella Mushroom Burger

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Portabella Mushroom Burger...this is one of the best meatless burgers I've ever eaten. This is not my recipe but I adapted it for use in my home kitchen. The recipe is (or was) used at the Art Institute of Houston in the restaurant there. That was in 2011, I have no idea if it's still offered there, but if it's not, it should be!

This is a burger that is great for meat-lovers as well as vegetarians. It's packed with flavor and it's not heavy on your stomach like regular burgers are. I usually eat two of these in a sitting. It's very healthy, too. There's not a lot of added fat required for preparation.


  • 4-4 ounce Portabella Mushroom caps, washed with stems removed
  • 1 medium to large red onion, sliced into 1/4" rings
  • 2 medium to large roasted red bell peppers, sliced lenghwise into 1/4" strips
  • 1 medium to large avocado, mashed or sliced (see pic)
  • 4 slices Mozzarella or Muenster Cheese
  • 4 whole wheat or white hamburger buns, lightly toasted
  • Unsalted butter or olive oil as needed
  • Cooking oil spray as needed
  1. Assemble all ingredients and kitchen tools. Recommended equipment: chef's knife, cutting board, 8"-10" saute pan, roasting pan or iron skillet, sheet pan, plates, paper towels, bowls for holding ingredients, pastry brush (optional).
  2. First, start roasting your red bell peppers: Set your oven to broil. Wash peppers and rub with olive oil or use cooking oil spray. Spray roasting pan or iron skillet with cooking spray. Place peppers in pan and put under broiler. Allow the skin to blacken somewhat on all sides. Use tongs to turn peppers so that they roast evenly. This will take 10-15 minutes. While they're roasting, saute red onion.
  3. Place 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter or olive oil in saute pan. Heat to medium heat. Add onions and saute until soft and slightly browned. Remove, cover and set aside. Remove red peppers from oven, cover and set aside.
  4. Brush or spray mushroom caps with oil and cook about 5-6 minutes per side, using the same saute pan. (Alternatively, you can broil the caps in the oven.) Set caps on a plate lined with paper towels, (gill side down) and allow to drain for a few minutes.
  5. While the caps are draining, place hamburger buns on sheet pan and toast them, if desired, (using oven or toaster oven). Butter the buns before toasting, or use cooking spray. You may also simply toast them with no butter or oil. Cover and set aside.
  6. Place mushroom caps on sheet pan and cover with mozzarella cheese. Place in oven until cheese melts. You can turn the oven off at this point--the oven should still be hot enough to melt the cheese sufficiently.
  7. Assemble burger: place mushroom caps with melted cheese on bottom buns. Divide sauteed red onions and roasted red bell peppers into 4 equal portions and place on top of cheese.
  8. Divide avocado slices (or mashed) into 4 equal portions and place on top buns.
  9. You are ready to rock! Enjoy these delicious burgers! (No condiments are necessary).

Additional Tips for this Recipe

You may mash your avocados instead of using slices. Sometimes it's easier that way, especially if the avocados are a little overripe.

I don't peel the mushrooms for use in this recipe but you can if you'd prefer them peeled. A lot is lost if you peel them, though. I recommend leaving them whole, minus the stem.

For roasted red bell peppers: It's best if you roast them yourself but if you don't want to, you can save time by purchasing roasted red bell peppers in a jar. They're usually packed in olive oil. The cost is a lot higher than if you prepare them at home, though. The jars of roasted red bell peppers usually run about $4-$5 or more.


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