Food & Drink

RECIPE: I Made Gluten-Free “Ramen” Burgers Because Nobody Cares About Me

by Lea Faminiano

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Seriously. Nobody cares about me.

Or at least, that’s what it feels like sometimes. Food trends – specifically, food trends that make people want to stand in line for hours – are popping up like crazy – and as I am gluten-free, I can’t have any. I’ve tried to play it off, like – I’m too cool for all of this – but seriously? I want a Cronut. I would totally stand in line for one at 5am, and I would so order any of Dominique Ansel’s other crazy creations if I could, like the Frozen S’more. I couldn’t try a Bantam Bagel, I’m not going to be able to grab a biscuit from the newly opened Empire Biscuit, I couldn’t get one of Hybird’s drumsticks (RIP), the list goes on, and on, and on…

Feeling left out, I decided to craft the gluten-free version of one of NYC’s top food-craze items of the year – ramen burgers. Like ramen, these actually turned out to be a snap to make. The best part? The only line I have to wait in is the one at the grocery store.

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This recipe is adapted from one I found on Mashable, with a few minor tweaks.  There are tons of gluten-free pastas out there, so I tried both Trader Joe’s brown rice spaghetti and some random no-name Asian rice vermicelli to replace the ramen. To give the noodles more flavor, I added a generous amount of salt to the boiling water for each, then added black pepper and garlic powder to the spaghetti, and crushed red pepper to the vermicelli.

The winner? The thinner, softer rice vermicelli. When cooked so that it’s crispy on the outside and still soft on the inside, the consistency is very similar to a real bun – though, the spaghetti was also pretty good. It’s all a matter of preference – trust me, you can’t really get this recipe wrong.

Gluten-Free “Ramen” Burgers

Ingredients (for one burger):
1 ramen-packet sized amount of gluten-free pasta (preferably brown rice spaghetti or rice vermicelli)
1 beef patty
1 egg
olive oil
seasoning (as desired: salt, pepper, garlic powder)
your favorite burger toppings (we used arugula and ketchup)

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1. Cook the noodles according to the directions on the package. Be generous when salting the boiling water!  Drain excess liquid, then let cool for approximately 10 minutes.
2. Mix the egg and seasonings into the noodles until thoroughly blended.
3. Form the noodle “buns.” I used two ramekins, divided the noodles between them, pressed plastic wrap over them, then used mason jars to press down onto the noodles and weigh them down. Let sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
4. Heat a non-stick pan with olive oil on medium-high heat, then invert one of the noodle buns into the pan. Cook for approximately 5 minutes or until golden brown and crispy looking on one side, then flip – the other side should only need about 2-3 minutes. Repeat for each bun.
5. Prepare your meat to your liking, then you know the drill – arrange like you would a regular burger.
6. Enjoy!