Nothing says summer like freshly grilled homemade burgers, but the type of meat we use can make it or break it, at least nutritionally speaking.
But how do you know what you're eating? For years, meat manufacturers didn’t have to disclose nutrition facts on product labels. Effective March 2012, however, nutrition facts are required on packaging for nearly all types of meat, fish and poultry.
All of the following have 0 grams carbohydrate and 18-26 grams protein per 4-ounce serving
95% Lean Organic Grass-Fed Beef (No Added Hormones)
- Per 4-ounce serving: 137 calories, 5 grams fat, 2 grams saturated fat
- Grass-fed beef has more omega-3fats, carotenoids, and vitamin E precursors
- Beef is an excellent source of iron, zinc, vitamin B12 and niacin.
96% Lean Ground Buffalo or Bison
- Per 4-ounce serving: 131 calories, 3 grams fat, 1 gram saturated fat
- Like beef, buffalo & bison are excellent sources of iron, zinc, vitamin B12 and niacin.
- It’s illegal to give bison growth hormones, whether organically-raised or not
- Cut-for-cut, it’s slightly leaner than beef; but, like beef, there are higher-fat cuts of bison, so be sure to look for at least 93% lean when selecting ground buffalo/bison.
99% Lean Ground Turkey Breast
- Per 4-ounce serving: 120 calories, 1.5 grams fat, 0.5 grams saturated fat
Other great alternatives include ground white meat chicken, ground salmon, and vegetarian ground beef substitutes.
93 to 95% Beef; conventionally-raised
- Per 4-ounce serving: 137-170 calories, 5-8 grams fat, 2-3 grams saturated fat
- Still relatively low in calories and saturated fat, and an excellent source of iron, zinc, vitamin B12 and niacin, but likely has been treated with added growth hormones
93% Lean “Extra Lean” Ground Turkey Breast
- Per 4-ounce serving: 170 calories, 8 grams fat, 2.5 grams saturated fat
75% Lean Ground Beef
- Per 4-ounce serving: 330 calories, 28 grams fat, 11 grams saturated fat
- Ounce-for-ounce, it has 2.5x more calories and 5 times more saturated fat than 95% extra lean ground beef
- Per 4-ounce serving: 220 calories, 17 grams fat, 4 grams saturated fat
- **it’s essential to look for ‘white meat turkey’ or ‘skinless turkey breast’ or ‘extra lean ground turkey,’ since plain old ‘ground turkey’ can have more fat and calories than many types of ground beef*