With a city known as the Big Apple and orchards never failing to produce countless varieties of native apples, New York’s signature burger could only be a classic Big Apple burger oozing with caramelized onions and a slice of Empire apple. You could top it with sharp NY cheddar, but we like it with dairy-free Chao Creamy Original Slices. They peel easily, add a kick of umami thanks to the fermented tofu, and — most important for the perfect burger — melt like a dream.
2 medium yellow onions
2 tablespoons olive oil
2–3 sprigs fresh sage
Juice of ½ a lemon
1 cup cold water
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 medium firm and tart apple (such as Empire, Macoun, or Granny Smith)
4 Chao Original Creamy Slices
4 burger buns
- Cut the onions in half. Peel. Cut each half into thin radial slices from pole to pole (cut with the curve of the onion). Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil; when it simmers, add the onion slices, sage sprigs, and a few pinches of salt. Cook onions over medium heat until soft and brown, stirring every few minutes to prevent burning, about 30 minutes. Remove sage sprigs.
- While the onions are cooking, combine the lemon juice, water, and vinegar in a shallow bowl. Slice the apples into thin slices and place in the acidulated water.
- Cook Lightlife Burgers per package instructions. In the last 2 minutes, top each patty with one slice of cheddar and allow to melt.
- Toast buns, if desired, about 1 minute.
- Remove buns and burgers from grill. Drain the apple slices from the acidulated water and pat dry.
- Place burger patty on bottom bun. Top with 2–3 slices of apple. Spread 1–2 tablespoons caramelized onion jam on the top half of the bun and top the burger.