Double R Burgers With Ham and Cheddar

Robin gives a fast-food favorite from her college days a healthy makeover.

When I think of college fast-food runs, no memory is complete without including the Double R Bar Burger from Roy Rogers: a char-grilled beef burger with melted cheddar and thinly-sliced deli ham. For greater perfection, I always added tons of pickles. Just writing about it makes me salivate.

These days, when the craving for the Double R Bar strikes, two problems occur. One, the burger isn’t available nationwide. Two, when you DO find it, you’re faced with a sandwich that has 549 calories, 27 grams of fat (11 of which are saturated) and 1349 milligrams of sodium. The calories might not seem horrific, but that explains my unquenchable thirst. And as if that’s not enough, there’s even a Double Double R Bar Burger with 876 calories, 49 grams of fat (20 saturated) and 1997 milligrams of sodium (a good year, not a good number for salt).

Happily, I created a similarly fabulous burger in the comfort of my own home. I used ground turkey instead of beef and cut the sodium in the ham and the fat in the cheese. Here’s the best part: I tested the recipe on a bunch of 10 year old boys (at my house for a sleepover). They all demanded seconds!

Note: Grilling the burgers on a stove-top grill pan really helps add that Roy Rogers flavor.

Double R Turkey Burgers
Cooking spray
1 pound ground turkey breast
2 teaspoons minced dried onion (sold in the spice aisle)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese (4 slices)
4 hamburger buns (regular or whole wheat)
4 ounces thinly sliced reduced-sodium smoked ham

Coat a stove-top grill pan with cooking spray and preheat to medium-high.

In a large bowl, combine the turkey and onion and mix well. Shape mixture into 4 equal patties, each about 1 inch thick. Season both sides of the patties with salt and pepper. Place the burgers on the hot pan and cook 4 to 5 minutes per side, until cooked through. Top the burgers with cheese and cook 30 seconds, until cheese melts. Arrange the burgers on the buns and top with sliced ham.

Serves 4
Nutrition Info Per Serving
Calories: 342
Total Fat: 11 grams
Saturated Fat: 5.6 grams
Total Carbohydrate: 22 grams
Sugars: 3 grams
Protein: 39 grams
Sodium: 786 milligrams
Cholesterol: 69 milligrams
Fiber: 1 gram
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