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It’s no secret that everyone loves a good burger and fries — and there are plenty of places to find them in Boca and Delray Beach. But what about those of us who also can’t resist those crispy, crunchy french fries and want to down a big, juicy non-meat burger along with ’em? Local restaurants are beginning to understand that it’s not just the meatiness of a burger that draws people in, but rather the whole package! The myriad of ingredients that go into making the patty, the variety of add-ons that bring in tons of flavor and texture, and the creative sauces that do a great job marrying everything together for one totally tasty bite.
Nowadays you are hard-pressed to find a restaurant with one simple beef burger on its menu. There are all kinds of red meat combos going on, as well as chicken and turkey burgers, tuna and salmon burgers, and my favorite — veggie burgers. Gimme a patty filled with quinoa, wild rice, brown rice, black beans, chickpeas, white beans, mushrooms, onions, peppers, spinach, kale, beets, etc. and I am a happy girl. The veggie burger is growing in popularity and local chefs are having a lot of fun playing around with ingredients and flavor profiles. Some of these veggie burgers are so good, even your meat-loving friends will find themselves veering toward this vegetarian option.
Over the past couple months, I’ve made my way around town, getting in my fill of vegetables and grains. There may or may not have been a couple batches of french fries taste-tested along the way. Hey…you can’t have a burger without a side of fries!
5. The Habit Burger Grill Delray Beach
The Habit Burger Grill hails from Southern California. They opened in Delray Beach not too long ago; read more about this burger chain here. Their veggie burger is thin and dense, and served on a toasted wheat bun with lettuce, fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and a honey dijon dressing. You also have the option to add on cheese or avocado.
What I loved: The dressing! That sweet and tangy honey dijon dressing was absolutely perfect. I asked for mine on the side — perfect for dipping my sweet potato fries. (See? I told you there had to be fries!) I also dipped the cucumbers that were on the sandwich. I like to eat my veggie burgers with a knife and fork, usually omitting the bun, so you know I was basically drowning the burger bites in this dressing. Totally crave-worthy. I also tried the tempura green beens (SO yummy), and even those were delicious with the honey dijon flavors. That dressing can seriously do no wrong.
What I didn’t love: The density of the patty. I like being able to discern the ingredients within the patty, and even like when they crumble and fall apart as I pierce my knife and fork into them. This was just a little too packed together for my liking.
4. Mellow Mushroom Delray Beach
Mellow Mushroom might be most well known for its myriad of pizzas, but did you know they also have two new burger options? One of which, much to my delight, is vegetarian! This new menu addition is made with a mixture of quinoa, kale, brown rice, and roasted mushrooms. It’s seasoned with roasted garlic and shallots and topped off with avocado, melted cheddar cheese, and garlic aioli — all stuffed between a grilled brioche bun. Instead of french fries, this vegalicious burger comes with a side of rosemary roasted potatoes.
What I loved: The actual burger itself. It had the texture and consistency I look for in a veggie burger — and look at that list of ingredients! Healthy, hearty, and super flavorful. I also really loved the side potatoes. I love me some french fries, but roasted potatoes, as long as they are nice and crispy, are a very close second.
What I didn’t love: The cheese. I’m just not a fan of yellow cheddar cheese. With so many delicious ingredients going into the veggie burger, I would have liked to see a little more creativity go into the the type of cheese used. I actually scraped most of it off, and enjoyed the burger just as well cheese-free.
3. Bogart’s Bar & Grill Boca Raton
Bogart’s just rolled out a new menu, but their veggie burger hasn’t gone anywhere — thank goodness! I’ve been eyeing this gem for a while, and couldn’t wait to give it a try. It’s made with brown rice, quinoa, lentils, zucchini, mushrooms, onions, beets, corn, and a black bean relish, served on a whole wheat bun. You can choose between regular french fries, sweet potato fries, coleslaw, or small salad on the side.
What I loved: Again, the texture and consistency of this burger met all my requirements. I like the use of lentils for added protein. Between the quinoa, lentils and beans, this burger probably packs as much, if not more, protein than a burger made with meat. There’s also this delicious creamy, avocado-y sauce smeared on one side of the bun that I just couldn’t get enough of.
What I didn’t love: I wholeheartedly can’t say anything bad about the burger itself, but if I have to choose something I didn’t exactly love, it would be the whole wheat bun — it wasn’t worth the extra carbs and calories for me. But like I mentioned earlier, I prefer to eat my veggie burgers with a knife and fork anyway.
2. Tap 42 Boca Raton
One of Fort Lauderdale’s most popular gastropubs made its way up to Boca earlier this year, and locals couldn’t be more thrilled. The veggie burger on their menu is different from all the others I’ve listed so far — this one is a falafel burger. Um, YES PLEASE! Chickpeas are the base ingredient for this veggie burger. It’s topped with lettuce, tomato, and onion, and served with a roasted red pepper tzaztiki sauce. You have the option to add on smashed avocado, roasted mushrooms, a sunny side up egg, or caramelized onions.
What I loved: THE SAUCE. Oh my god, that tzaztiki sauce was seriously one of the best sauces I have ever tasted. The burger itself was great in flavor, texture, and consistency — it hit all the right notes, and it really did taste like a falafel. But it was the sauce that completely won me over.
What I didn’t love: Another one I couldn’t really find anything wrong with. Just another one where the bread wasn’t absolutely needed. Mostly because I just wanted to dunk the entire burger into the sauce and stuff my face without worrying about any bread getting in the way.
- Deck 84 Delray Beach
Chef Jon has perfected the veggie burger for his fans at Deck 84 (and yes, he seriously does have fans — this guy rocks!) Although I still have plenty more veggie burgers in town to try, I think this is my favorite one so far. What started out as a lunch special is now a staple on the new menu. It’s made with quinoa, wild rice, roasted beets, and prunes, topped with avocado slices and alfalfa sprouts, and served on a seeded kaiser roll. You can get regular french fries, sweet potato fries, or coleslaw on the side — I highly recommend the sweet potato fries! There’s a thick, creamy avocado dipping sauce that comes with the burger, perfect for smearing all over the patty itself before you dig in or for dipping your pieces of cut-up burger and fries!
What I loved: Um, everything? Especially that sauce. I could swim in it. There needs to be more of it!
What I didn’t love: Nothing. I can’t find a single thing wrong with this. Seriously. I even liked the bread, dipped in the sauce of course.
These are just a few of the veggie burgers to hit our cozy little food-centric area. A couple other great ones to note: Park Tavern’s veggie burger with its sweet and savory, delicious tomato-onion jam, and the caramelized-onion-smothered veggie burger at The Office — both located in Delray Beach, right across the street from each other, no less.
Believe me, there are plenty more I need to try and will of course share my thoughts with all of you. Until then, feast your eyes on these and go veg out!