Bleu Cheese Portobello Burgers

Is it bleu cheese or blue cheese? It doesn’t really matter (and either is correct). With grilling season in full swing, these yummy “burgers” will keep you out of a barbecue rut.  There’s no need to limit yourself to ground beef  when there are so many other interesting things to put inside that bun!

As a starting point, try these! These grilled portobellos are topped with a sprinkling of bleu cheese, a pile of port-glazed caramelized onions and some fresh arugula and tomato. Each layer of flavor threatens to outdo the last. If you don’t care for cheese (or you’re limiting dairy) you can easily eliminate the cheese without sacrificing flavor!


Bleu Cheese Portobello Burgers

adapted from EatingWell May/June 201

serves 4


3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 large portobello mushrooms, stems removed and caps wiped clean

3 cups thinly sliced red or sweet onion

2 tablespoons water

1/4 cup ruby port*

1/2 teaspoon salt, divided

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided

1/2 cup crumbled bleu cheese (or goat cheese) – optional

4 whole-wheat hamburger buns

1 cup baby arugula (or baby spinach)

1 tomato


1. Whisk 2 tablespoons olive oil, vinegar, and garlic in a bowl. Brush over both sides of mushrooms and let stand for 30 minutes.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over high heat in a large skillet. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Reduce to low heat and add water and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is browned and very soft, about 15 minutes.

3. Raise heat slightly and add port to onions and cook stirring occasionally until mostly evaporated, about 3 minutes more. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Remove from heat and cover.

4. Preheat grill to medium. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper over mushrooms. Grill, gill-side down, for 3-5 minutes. Turn over and top each with 2 tablespoons of cheese. Grill until the mushrooms are tender, another 3-4 minutes. Toast the buns in the last few minutes.

5. Divide the onions among the mushrooms. Place arugula and 1 slice of tomato on the bottom of the bun. Place the mushroom on top (cheese side-up) and top with bun.

*Note: Port is a Spanish/Portuguese wine that is much sweeter than most other red wines. For this reason port can en part a “sweetness” to a dish that a red table wine cannot. If you do not have port, an adequate substitute would be 1/4 cup dark red wine (Cabernet, Merlot, Shiraz)and 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar combined.

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