5 Healthy Burger Bun Alternatives

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

It’s finally summer – and that means weekends are filled with cookouts, barbecues, and plenty of picnic food. There’s nothing quite like the taste of a great grilled burger. Although a bun helps hold the meat, cheese, and condiments together on a good burger, sometimes, the bun that burger is served on can pose a problem. For those with celiac disease, a gluten-intolerance, or just trying to cut down on carbs, there is no reason why you have to skip out on delicious, juicy burgers because you can’t eat the buns. Check out these five alternatives to the traditional burger bun so that you can get your burger fix this summer:

Alternatives to Hamburger Buns

Try tomatoes instead of burger buns

Tomatoes not only make a tasty alternative to the burger bun but they also have many health benefits because tomatoes are a rich source of Vitamin A and C. Slice a large tomato in half as a substitute for bread or try using smaller tomato slices for burger sliders.


Use lettuce instead of burger buns

A big piece of crispy and refreshing Romaine lettuce can be used to wrap your burger and all the fixings. Romaine lettuce is a good source of fiber, Vitamin C and K, and potassium.


Portobello mushroom as a hamburger bun

A baked or grilled Portobello mushroom provides a good source of fiber, as well as adds plenty of minerals to your diet. It also mimics the texture of a burger bun almost perfectly.


Eggplant for burger buns

Sliced and grilled eggplant makes for a great burger bun substitute because eggplants are filled with fiber, vitamins, and minerals. It also contains chlorogenic acid, a natural antioxidant found in plants.


Red peppers for burger buns

Red peppers are packed with Vitamin A and C and are a good source of Vitamin B6 and magnesium. In addition, red peppers add a sweet flavor to your burger and are large enough to be used as the buns.

We hope you enjoy these tasty alternatives to traditional hamburger buns. Opting for large, vitamin-packed veggies to keep your burger bundled can help you to better enjoy your next summer cookout.

If you know someone who’s staying carb-free this summer or someone who is gluten intolerant, please feel free share some of these tips with them! If you have a favorite top for preparing burgers without buns, let us know in the comments. We’d love to hear from you.

If you find that your digestive problems are unmanageable, visit the UPMC Digestive Disorders Center, or call 1-866-4GASTRO (27876).

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Digestive Disorders

The Digestive Disorders Center (DDC) is a convenient point of access to the full range of digestive health care services available at UPMC. Our team has expertise in treatments for inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, as well as swallowing disorders, gastrointestinal cancer, and liver, pancreatic, and biliary diseases. Read More