Portobello Mushroom Burgers that Dads Will Love

With bonus sweet potato fries and chutney recipes!
portobello mushroom burger
© Can Stock Photo / ezumeimages

Father's Day is the third Sunday in June in North America. This year spoil your dad with a healthy twist on a classic dad-approved meal — The mighty burger and fries! 

The following recipe is vegetarian but a worthy contender to any burger, period. It’s "meaty", flavourful, and high in protein. Halloumi is a Cypriot semi-hard, unripened brined cheese made from a mixture of goat and sheep milk, and sometimes cow milk. 

It can easily be modified to include a homemade meat patty and/or bacon if you really want to show him you care(nivore!). Serve up with a healthy version of homemade Thousand Island dressing to go with your taters. For an extra treat or gift, have the kids make some woodsy-scented and flavoured spruce tip goodies!

Portobello and Halloumi Burgers

Serves: 2


  • 2 buns
  • 2 small portobello mushrooms
  • 1 pack halloumi cheese
  • 1 white onion
  • 4 tbsp. cooking oil


  • 4 tbsp. tomato chutney (recipe below) 
  • 2 tbsp. hot mustard
  • 1 avocado
  • handful mixed greens (i.e. spring, mustard, sprouts) 


  1. Cut the onion into thin slices. In a medium-hot pan sauté in oil for 5 minutes.
  2. Remove the stems of the Portobello mushrooms and place over the sautéing onions.
  3. Reduce the heat to low and cover with a lid. The mushroom will provide additional moisture and assist in softening the onions, while the steam released from the caramelizing onions will cook the mushroom. Occasionally check and stir the mixture.
  4. It should caramelize nicely in 20 minutes. The onions should be sweet and golden brown and the mushrooms should be easily pierced with a fork and juicy. Optional: add fresh herbs (e.g. thyme).
  5. Put another pan on medium high heat and drizzle in cooking oil.  
  6. Portion and slice the halloumi at least ½ inch think and sear each side for roughly 3 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Prepare an assembly line for burgers.
  8. Slice the buns, rinse the lettuce, mash or slice an avocado, get out a selection of condiments and pull out your gorgeous sweet tater tats.
  9. Design your burger and accompany it with a sweet order of fries.

Sweet Potato Fries


  • 2 sweet potatoes 
  • 2 tbsp. cooking oil (to coat wedges)
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil (to line the baking tray)
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. sea salt 
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder 


  1. Turn the oven on bake to 400 F. Place a baking tray in the middle of the oven to heat the tray. Note: this step will ensure your sweet potatoes get crispy.
  2. Wash the sweet potatoes with a bristle brush (leave skin on). One at a time cut the potatoes in half along the length, making long wedge cut fries.
  3. In a bowl mix the paprika, cayenne, turmeric, salt and oil. Toss with the newly formed wedges.
  4. Once the oven has reached the ideal temperature, carefully pull out the hot tray from the oven with oven mitts.
  5. Scoop a couple tablespoons of coconut oil on the tray to evenly coat. Position the wedges on the tray and return it to the middle rack of the oven to bake.
  6. After 15 minutes flip the wedges over and bake for another 15 minutes.
  7. Remove and let cool.

Simple Cherry Tomato Chutney


  • 4 shallots (diced) 
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced) 
  • 500g cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • Pinch of salt and pepper, to taste 


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  2. Slice a shallow “X” in the bottom of all the tomatoes.
  3. Fill a bowl with ice and water and set it next to the stove.
  4. Working in batches, drop several tomatoes into the boiling water. Watch for their skins to start to wrinkle and split (45-60 seconds).
  5. Scoop them out with a slotted spoon and transfer them to the ice water bath.
  6. When all the tomatoes have cooled, use your fingers or a paring knife to peel back the skins.
  7. Add all the ingredients to a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  8. Cook over medium high heat for about 15 minutes or until the mixture has thickened and looks jammy.
  9. Adjust the seasoning to your taste.

Thousand Islands Dressing


  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/4 tsp. salt 
  • 3/4 cup olive oil mayonnaise 
  • 1/4 cup cherry tomato relish 
  • Salt and pepper, to taste 


  1. Make a paste with the garlic and a ¼ tsp. of salt by crushing it with the side of a chef’s knife.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together garlic, mayonnaise, and cherry tomato relish.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  4. Store refrigerated for up a 1 week or freeze.