Mushroom and onion burgers

Mushroom and Onion Burgers

Mushroom and onion burgers — made from ground beef, bison, turkey or plant-based meat — are covered in sautéed mushrooms and caramelized onions.

While this has been my go-to recipe for burgers for years, two movies we recently watched on Netflix made me feel even better about this dish. Fabulous Fungi explores the “magical world of fungi, from mushrooms that clear oil spills to underground fungal networks that help trees communicate.” Not only did I learn about the medicinal and mysterious powers of fungi, I also enjoyed watching the time-lapse photography of the life cycle of mushrooms.

In The Game Changers, James Wilks, a UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) fighter, meets visionary scientists and top athletes while on a quest to find the optimal diet for human performance and health. He learned that “plant-based eating … offers significant advantages for performance, health and the greater world.”

After watching The Game Changers, I decided to try a plant-based diet at least once a week. It was easier than I expected for two reasons.  First, plant-based meat can be used in many of the recipes I often make, like spaghetti, Swedish meatballs, nachos, tacos, and chili. Second, I’ve noticed a growing number of vegans and vegetarians in my circle of family and friends. When I invite them for dinner, I’ve had fun searching out new recipes.

What’s in Plant-Based Burgers?

If you’re wondering what’s in plant-based burgers, here’s what the website for Impossible Foods has to say: “Impossible Burger is made from proteins, flavors, fats, and binders. The key difference from your average beef burger? Our ingredients are derived from plants. Here’s an overview:

  • Protein from soy and potatoes
  • Flavor from heme (the molecule that makes meat taste, well, meaty)
  • Fat from coconut and sunflower oils make it sizzle on the griddle
  • Binders, methylcellulose and food starch, hold it together so you can make anything you want — meatballs, kebabs, patties, and more.”

Serves: 4

Active time:  30 minutes                 Total time: 30 minutes

Specialized One-Butt Kitchen Utensils


  • 2 yellow onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • 12 oz (4 cups) fresh baby bella mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 tbsp olive oil (more as needed)
  • 1 lb ground meat (beef, bison, turkey or plant-based)
  • 2 tbsp traditional balsamic, optional
  • blue cheese crumbles for topping, optional


Place the sliced onions in a large skillet with 2 tbsp olive oil. Sauté over medium high heat while slicing the mushrooms.

Add the sliced mushrooms and more olive oil as needed. Stir often until the onions are well browned, about 20 minutes or so.

Mushrooms and onions 1
The mushrooms and onions will fill the pan when they are just starting to cook.

The veggies will shrink as they cook. Scoot the mushrooms and onions to one side of the pan to make room for the burgers. Reposition the pan so that the flame is under the burgers, not the veggies. Cook 3 to 4 minutes per side, depending on the meat used and your preference for doneness.

Burgers in pan
Cut down on dirty dishes by cooking the mushroom and onion burgers in one large skillet.

To serve, place the burger on a plate and top it with the mushrooms and onions. Add a light drizzle of traditional balsamic and/or blue cheese crumbles as desired.



  1. Marilyn and Dave

    Hope you and Jim are doing well.
    You always provide us with great recipes.
    I will add your Netflix suggestions to our queue.
    If you are home for the holidays, give us a call and we’ll plan to get together~


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