You come home from yoga, running, the gym, >insert favorite activity here< – starving. You MUST eat NOW. Here’s a quick and easy veggie burger recipe with a cheat. Slice up some button crimini mushrooms and toss in a pan with equal parts balsamic vinegar and EVOO, along with a few crushed cloves of garlic (whole).

It will look like this after a few stirs in the pan, maybe about five minutes. Put aside.

Flatten out two-2 oz. patties of Gimme Lean Sausage Style (this is where you are ‘cheating’ Father time, because it is so easy to use). Place in same pan as mushrooms were just in, absorbing the leftover juice from the mushrooms, balsamic, EVOO, and garlic. Dice up some jalapenos (minus the seeds and ribs), fresh cilantro, and slice off a few pieces of tomato. Check your ‘burger’ patties; possibly flip if they are golden brown on the bottom, usually after four minutes on medium heat.

Toast up some whole wheat buns under the broiler or toaster over (I don’t have one!). Carve off two thick slices of your favorite cheddar cheese and place it over a slice of tomato on top of your patties now that they have been flipped. Cover entire pan with a lid for about two minutes; the steam from the cooking will melt the cheese perfectly on top of your patties. Pull patties off heat, on to your buns, top with quick marinated mushrooms, cilantro, and jalapenos. Start drooling and devour.

I am working on a real ‘from scratch’ veggie burger, but I love the Gimme Lean for its lean protein and very-close-to-real-meat texture. If you are on the fence about trying meatless soy products, give this a try for ‘meatless Mondays’ or in replacement of your usual sausage for your breakfast sandwich. It is super yum and doesn’t taste fake! The stats on it are great too: 60 calories, 0 g of fat, 0 mg. of cholesterol, and 7 g of protein! It’s a winner.

Do you have a favorite meatless substitute? Do you miss meat when you eat it or can’t taste the difference?