Loaded Burger Bowl with Special Sauce

Enjoy a fully loaded burger bowl with special sauce as an easy meal for busy weeknights. It tastes like a big mac in a bowl but is made with fresh homemade ingredients in under 30 minutes!

A white bowl filled with lettuce, cooked ground beef, tomatoes, avocado, pickles, cooked bacon, red onion and shredded cheese.

This meal is on constant rotation in my house. It’s easy to pull together on busy weeknights and is great for the whole family. You can call it a big mac salad but it’s essentially deconstructed burgers in a bowl.

The special burger sauce tastes like big mac sauce and elevates the flavor of the burger.

What is a burger bowl?

A burger bowl tastes like your favorite burger but in bowl form. They are a high protein low carb lunch or dinner. Ground beef is cooked in a skillet and then layered on top of all of your favorite burger toppings. Serve the bowl with a homemade special sauce to create a delicious big mac bowl. Or use your favorite salad dressing for a different flavor.

Recipe Highlights

  • Great family meal – Add this easy dinner to your weekly rotation for a meal that both kids and adults love.
  • Meal prep – Prep the entire meal in advance for an easy lunch or dinner. You can store the cooked beef separately from the bowl ingredients and reheat the beef prior to serving. Also store the dressing in a separate container.
  • Easy to adapt – Add any of your favorite burger toppings to this cheeseburger bowl to make it your own.
Cooked beef in a skillet with a wooden spoon sitting on a countertop with all of the other burger bowl toppings sitting in bowls on a countertop.

Best Burger Bowl Toppings

  • Cheese: Use your favorite cheese for burgers. Cheddar cheese, American, sharp, Pepper jack or Colby Jack are good choices. I like to melt most of the cheese into the cooked beef and then sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top of the bowls.
  • Pickles: You can use any type of pickles. Dill are the choice for traditional burgers, but Bread and Butter pickles also taste great.
  • Other veggies: Serve this bowl with any of your favorite veggies. Grilled peppers and onions, tomato and cucumber salad, skillet corn and roasted zucchini and squash are all great choices.
  • Bacon
  • Fried Egg
  • Sliced Avocado
  • Fresh Dill
  • Pickled Carrots
  • Pickled Hot Peppers
  • Mushrooms and Onions
  • Tortilla Chips
  • French Fried or Potatoes: Top off the hamburger in a bowl with some homemade french fries or crispy sweet potato fries. We also love serving with these breakfast potatoes or tater tots.
Burger bowl with special sauce in a white bowl for serving.


  • Alternatives to beef – You can use ground turkey or ground chicken instead of the beef. To make a vegan bowl, you can substitute the beef with a vegan ground beef substitute.
  • Use a burger patty – Instead of crumbling the ground beef, you can also make burger patties. Melt the cheese directly on top of the burger patty and layer the burger patties over the assembled salad.
  • Add more toppings – Serve the bowl layered with any of the burger toppings listed above.
  • Use another dressing – Instead of the burger sauce, try thousand island dressing, Ranch dressing or honey mustard sauce.

Storage and Meal Prep

You can store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Store the dressing separate from the assemble bowls.

I use glass containers for meal prep, but you can also layer the ingredients in a mason jar. When you’re ready to eat, pour everything into a large bowl, stir together all of the ingredients and serve.

Other Easy Ground Beef Recipes

Did you try this Burger Bowl recipe? Leave a recipe rating and review below.

A white bowl filled with lettuce, cooked ground beef, tomatoes, avocado, pickles, cooked bacon, red onion and shredded cheese.

Loaded Burger Bowl with Special Sauce

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
A delicious cheeseburger in a bowl with special sauce and all of your favorite burger toppings!
5 from 2 votes


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 heads romaine lettuce or leaf lettuce, chopped
  • 1 medium avocado
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup dill pickles, chopped or sliced
  • 1/2 cup red onion, diced
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheese, (your favorite burger cheese – I use colbyjack)
  • 1 cup croutons, or baked french fries (optional)

For the Burger Sauce (optional)

  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup dill pickles, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dill pickle juice


  • Set a skillet on the stovetop over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef, breaking it up into smaller chunks. Season with Worcestershire, garlic powder, salt and pepper and cook until no pink remains. Drain any excess grease and top with 1/2 cup cheese. You can stir it in or let it melt over the beef. Set aside.
  • Prepare the burger sauce by combining all of the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until well combined. Refrigerate the sauce until you're ready to serve.
  • To build the bowl, place the lettuce in a large serving bowl, or divide it between 4 smaller bowls or containers. Layer on the cooked beef and remaining ingredients. Serve with the special sauce or thousand island dressing.


  • If you want to cut fat content in this recipe, you can omit the avocado and bacon. This will drastically reduce the fat content. 
  • You can use ground turkey or ground chicken instead of the beef. 
  • Other dressing: You can use Thousand Island dressing, Ranch dressing or honey mustard instead of the homemade burger sauce. 
Storage: Store leftovers in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Store the dressing separate from the assembled bowls. 


Calories: 513kcal, Carbohydrates: 24g, Protein: 37g, Fat: 31g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g, Monounsaturated Fat: 12g, Trans Fat: 0.4g, Cholesterol: 99mg, Sodium: 1139mg, Potassium: 1657mg, Fiber: 11g, Sugar: 10g, Vitamin A: 27799IU, Vitamin C: 29mg, Calcium: 255mg, Iron: 7mg
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Ashley C.
If you try this recipe, don’t forget to leave a review below or share a photo and tag @spoonfulofflavor on Instagram.

2 comments on “Loaded Burger Bowl with Special Sauce”

  1. This is an absolutely delicious recipe! Such a great combination of flavors!!

  2. The perfect lunch salad! I’ve been skipping the buns on my burgers lately so this salad is a fantastic alternative!

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