This Big Mac Bowl is absolutely going to be your new favorite meal. Savory ground beef, crunchy lettuce, juicy tomatoes, zingy pickles, and aromatic onions, all swimming in that oh-so-special sauce.
It’s a Big Mac, yes, but not as you know it – this version delivers everything you love about a McDonald’s Big Mac but in a fresh, vibrant salad. A home-run dinner that’ll leave you feeling satisfied, nourished, and grinning from ear to ear every time!
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Who can resist a McDonald’s Big Mac, right?! But guess what? You can now whip up this Big Mac inspired bowl at HOME! And even better – you get all those mouthwatering flavors of a big mac, but in a lightened-up form! I’m telling you, this Big Mac Bowl is about to become your ultimate dinner go-to all year round!
Packed with protein from the ground beef, this Big Mac Bowl is sure to keep you full and satisfied till your next meal. It’s also great for meal prep and holds up well in the fridge, so it’s the perfect grab-and-go option for busy days. It may even be better than the real thing.
Rachel’s Nutrition Tip: Add some rice or potatoes to your bowl to increase your intake of complex carbohydrates and make your meal even more satisfying.
What You’ll Love About This Recipe
You’ll need the following ingredients to make this Big Mac in a Bowl:
Ground Beef: Opt for lean ground beef (93%) if you prefer less fat, or use a mix of lean and fatty for more flavor. You can also substitute with ground turkey or chicken for a leaner option.
Ketchup – I opted for sugar free ketchup (Primal Kitchen brand) to keep this keto and low carb friendly but feel free to use regular ketchup if that is easier.
Greek Yogurt: This recipe incorporates a blend of half Greek yogurt and half mayo for the secret sauce to cut some of the calories and fat content compared to using full mayo, and it also adds a nice protein boost.
How to make the Big Mac Bowl Recipe: Step by Step
Here are quick instructions. Be sure to check out the full instructions with exact ingredients in the printable recipe card below.
Step 1: Brown ground beef in large skillet over medium-high heat with garlic powder and and dried dill.
Step 2: Cook bacon and set aside.
Step 3: Prep the avocado, tomatoes, lettuce, pickles and onions for the salads. Crumble the cooled bacon strips.
Step 4: Prepare the copycat big mac sauce by mixing all ingredients together in a small bowl until well combined. Set aside.
Step 5: To build your salad, start with a layer of the chopped lettuce, topped with about 1/4 of the ground beef mixture. Divide the remaining pickles, bacon, tomatoes, onion and sliced avocado among the big mac burger bowls. Top with prepared sauce and serve
Recipe Tips and Tricks
Drain the Fat: If you’re using a higher fat content beef, don’t forget to drain the excess fat after browning for a less greasy meal
Time Saving Tip: If you’re short on time or just prefer convenience, you can absolutely use a store-bought special sauce or even a Thousand Island dressing. These typically share similar flavor profiles with the homemade version used in this recipe. It’s a quick and easy way to get that iconic taste without the extra prep work. G Hughes and Sir Kensington’s are both keto/low carb friendly.
Storage, Freezing, & Reheating
Storage: The Big Mac Bowl components can be stored separately in the fridge for 3-4 days. Keep the cooked ground beef and bacon in one container, the chopped veggies in another, and the burger sauce in a separate container. This helps to prevent the ingredients from getting soggy.
Freezing: The cooked ground beef and bacon can be frozen for up to 3 months. Make sure to cool them completely before transferring into freezer-safe bags or containers. It’s best to avoid freezing the fresh vegetables and sauce, as their texture and quality may deteriorate upon thawing.
Reheating: To reheat the ground beef and bacon, you can use a microwave or stovetop. In the microwave, heat for about 1-2 minutes, stirring halfway through to ensure even reheating. On the stovetop, reheat in a skillet over medium heat until warmed through. Once your meat is reheated, you can assemble your bowl with the fresh ingredients and sauce. Remember to only dress the salad with the sauce right before you’re ready to eat to keep everything fresh and crisp.
Additions, Substitutions, and Variations
Ground Beef: You can substitute ground beef with ground turkey or chicken.
Bacon: Try turkey or chicken bacon for a leaner option, or a vegetarian bacon alternative.
Romaine Lettuce: You can use iceberg lettuce, kale, or spinach as alternatives.
Cheese: Sprinkle some shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack on top for a cheesy twist.
Cucumbers: Add sliced cucumbers for extra crunch and freshness.
Bell Peppers: Chopped bell peppers can add more color and a sweet crunch to the bowl.
Jalapeños: If you like a bit of heat, add some sliced jalapeños.
Vegetarian Version: Replace the beef with a plant-based ground meat substitute and use vegetarian bacon or omit the bacon entirely.
Rice Bowl: Looking for a carb boost? Turn your Big Mac Bowl into a satisfying rice bowl. Just add a serving of cooked brown, white, or even cilantro-lime rice to the base of your bowl, then proceed with the recipe as directed. The rice will soak up the flavors of the other ingredients, creating a delicious and filling meal.
Potato Bowl: Another great way to increase the carb content is to use potatoes. Add roasted or boiled diced red or sweet potatoes to your bowl for a hearty, nutrient-rich addition. This variation offers a unique twist on the classic Big Mac flavors, while providing a substantial, energizing meal.
This recipe has not been tested with other substitutions or variations. If you decide to replace or add any ingredients, please let me know how it turned out in the comments below…I would love to hear how it turned out.
Additional Topping Ideas
Fresh Herbs: Chopped fresh parsley or dill can add freshness and brightness.
Croutons: If you’re not concerned about keeping it low-carb, croutons can add a crunchy texture.
Sesame Seeds: A small sprinkle of sesame seeds can give your bowl an authentic burger bun feel.
Fried Onions: For some extra crunch and flavor, top your bowl with some crispy fried onions.
How To Meal Prep
Cook the Ground Beef and Bacon: Prepare your ground beef and bacon as the recipe directs. Once cooked, let them cool and then store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Prepare the Vegetables: Chop your lettuce, slice the onions and tomatoes, and prepare any other veggies you’re using. Store each type of vegetable in separate containers to keep them fresh.
Make the Sauce: Prepare the special sauce and store it in a separate container.
Meal Prep Containers: When it’s time to assemble your meals, portion out your beef and bacon into individual meal prep containers. Add your vegetables to each container, keeping them separate from the meat to maintain their crispness. Keep the sauce separate until you’re ready to eat.
When Ready to Eat: Reheat the ground beef and bacon (if desired), then add your veggies and sauce. Stir everything together, and enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
Healthy Dinner Recipes
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Big Mac Bowl
- 1 pound of ground beef
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried dill
- 1 large head of romaine chopped
- 8 slices of bacon crumbled
- 1/2 cup red onion sliced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- 1/2 cup dill pickle slices
- 1 avocado sliced
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup mayo
- 1 tablespoon sugar free ketchup
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon dried minced onion
- 2 tablespoons dill pickle relish
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Cook ground beef with garlic powder and and dried dill.
- Cook bacon and set aside.
- Prep the avocado, tomatoes, lettuce, pickles and onions for the salads. Crumble the cooled bacon strips.
- Prepare the sauce by mixing all ingredients together until well combined. Set aside.
- To build your salad, start with a layer of the chopped romaine, topped with about 1/4 of the ground beef mixture. Divide the remaining pickles, bacon, tomatoes, onion and sliced avocado among the salad bowls. Top with prepared sauce and serve.
Please note that the nutritional information provided for each recipe is an estimate sourced from the My Fitness Pal database. It’s important to be aware that the nutritional content may vary depending on the specific products used, the accuracy of measurements, and the reliability of the nutrition data source. While we strive to provide accurate information, we cannot guarantee the exact accuracy of the nutritional information provided.