Cheeseburger Salad

Kevin spent Saturday helping his brother and sister-in-law move into their beautiful new (and first) home.  As a matter of fact, there were a number of helpers and the entire process was done in about four hours.  Which is incredible.  At least I think that’s how long it took… I’m dog sitting currently and Dash and I didn’t show up until all the heaving lifting was done.  (I know.  Lame.)  As a hip-hip-hooray-we’re-done meal, everyone had pizza for lunch.  Which is always delicious.  But also makes me feel like I should have something slightly healthier for dinner.  Like a salad.

So I went onto the Pioneer Woman site and found a salad that I was pretty sure would satisfy both our taste buds and our hunger pains.  (Salad for Kevin is normal affair, but he always has to load it up with extras because he’s not built like a small girl, so I try to make sure that whatever we’re having for dinner will fill us both up.)

Enter: Cheeseburger Salad.  It had me at “Hello” and then really had me at “I have dill pickles on me and a number of delicious flavors mixed right into my meat that are often on a cheeseburger but even more often neglected in a cheeseburger salad.”

This. Was. Delicious.  I knew it would be when I started mixing in the additions to the meat and it smelled like McDonald’s.  (Although, I’m starting to realize that yellow mustard and ketchup will always make me think of McDonald’s.  And I think I kind of love it.)  And the icing on the burger-without-a-bun was that it was so wonderfully easy.  Even the homemade croutons were practically mindless (but impressive to say you made them).

I won’t go into detail about the step by step because Ree already did a fabulous job of that here, but I will give my two pieces of advice:

  • First, less is more when it comes to the ketchup, mustard, mayo and BBQ sauce in the meat.  Because you can always add more.  (I didn’t do this and my meat – while still delicious – was a bit sloppier than I expected.)
  • Second, I made the croutons a little healthier by using only half of the butter called for and whole wheat hot dog buns.  Admittedly, the whole wheat thing was an accident – Trader Joe’s was out of any regular hot dog or hamburger buns.  But it was so tasty, I might just stick with them the second time around.

So get grilling!  But without a grill.  Without a bun.  And without all the extra calories.  Yum.

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