Bruegger's now offers bagel burgers in Minneapolis locations

Bruegger's Barnyard Burger
Bruegger's Barnyard Burger
Sean McPherson

Sometimes when you sit down for a burger you think, "There's got to be a way to make this more fattening." You add bacon, a creamy mayonnaise-based sauce, cheese, and maybe even a fried egg. But it's not enough.

Stop. There's something you're missing. Toss that bun aside and grab a bagel. Not just any bagel. A bagel that itself has cheese fried on the top. Call it the Barnyard Burger to conjure images of a dude named Reginald wearing overalls and ordering it from Ye Old Country Bagel Shoppe. This is the kind of cheeseburger you are going to leave off your calorie counting app. This is the newest offering from Bruegger's, which is rolling out Barnyard and Bistro burgers at Boston and Minneapolis locations this summer and bringing them to all corporate locations in September.

See also: Food Fight: St. Paul Bagelry vs. Common Roots

For the uninitiated, Bruegger's is a leading bagel chain with locations all across the country, and in France as well, where these bagel burgers got their start. Though Bruegger's has been offering lunch options for decades, the burger innovation is changing the game.

Bruegger's offers two options, the Barnyard Burger ($6.99) and the Bistro Burger ($5.99). The Bistro variety comes topped with lettuce, tomato, pickled onions, cheddar cheese, and (forgive them) Brue-b-q sauce -- a spiced creamy thousand island with a touch of smoky maple flavor. This burger doesn't overdo it with toppings and that allows the wonderful pickled onions to shine through. The patty is reheated in a MerryChef oven, so it's not going to go beyond a fast-food level of flavor, but it is a sizable portion and doesn't come off like mystery meat.The plain bagel functions as a hearty substitute for a bun and it gives the burger some crunch and chew it would otherwise be missing.

Bruegger's other bovine offering, the Barnyard burger tries a few too many heavy things at once, including fried egg, cheese, and bacon, and doesn't have the pickled onion to distract us from the MerryChef patty. It also feels like a waste to use a densely flavored and calorie-laden Asiago Parmesan bagel primarily as a vehicle for the other ingredients. Our advice? Get the simpler bagel burger at Bruegger's or get an egg sandwich at Bruegger's but don't combine them into one breakfast-blasted-burger-bagel experience. It is, as the alliteration suggests, overkill.

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