In-N-Out Cheeseburgers, Animal Style, Made Skinny

There is nothing quite like a real juicy cheeseburger!  One of the most popular is In-N-Out Burger. My family loves their cheeseburger, animal style.  Sounds wild but animal-style means the meat is fried with mustard, then pickles, extra spread, and grilled onions are added!  Usually, a healthier burger made with extra lean ground beef can be dry and tasteless.  Not this skinny one! I’m adding several ingredients such as grated onions, an egg white, and Worcestershire sauce to create a super moist and flavorful burger.  This recipe uses a wheat bun, skinny grilled onions, and light cheese.  In-N-Out is famous for its special sauce.  I’ve included a recipe for reduced-fat thousand island dressing to capture the same taste sensations if desired.  My skinnier burger using a Trader Joe’s Honey Wheat Bun has 422 calories and 11 grams of fat.
In-N-Out Cheeseburgers, Animal Style, Made Skinny

Helpful Tips About this Recipe

Makes 6 burgers
Skinny Facts: for 2 tablespoons of dressing
43 calories, 3g fat, 1g protein, 4g carbs, 0g fiber, 171mg sodium, 2g sugar

Food Facts

In-N-Out Burger is a regional chain of fast-food restaurants.  They’re located all over the western United States.  In-N-Out was founded in 1948 by Harry and Ester Snyder.  Cars line up in their drive-through all day long!

Prep Tips

This burger can also be easily made using a Panini grill or George Forman grill.  It only takes 4-5 minutes total because both sides of the burger are cooked at once.  Or, prepare in a nonstick pan.  Cook patties on each side for about 4-5 minutes.

WW Freestyle SmartPoints
WW SmartPoints
SKINNY FACTS: for 1 cheeseburger, animal style (not including thousand island dressing) using a Trader Joe’s honey wheat bun
422 calories, 11g fat, 4g sat. fat, 50mg chol, 33g protein, 47g carbs, 6g fiber, 834mg sodium, 10g sugar


In-N-Out Cheeseburgers, Animal Style, Made Skinny

In-N-Out Cheeseburgers, Animal Style, Made Skinny

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Prep Time 15 minutes
Grill Time: 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 422 kcal


Ingredients for Burgers:

  • 2 large red onions, cut into slices
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pound extra-lean ground beef, I used Trader Joe’s extra lean ground beef (96/4)
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 small yellow onion grated, about 1 cup
  • ½ teaspoon Lawry’s seasoning salt
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 slices of reduced-fat cheese, such as Jarlsberg, Swiss, Havarti, or mozzarella
  • 6 whole wheat buns, I love Trader Joe’s Honey Wheat Buns, see shopping tip or sandwich thins, see below
  • Tomato slices

Ingredients for Condiments:

  • Thousand island dressing, optional, recipe follows
  • Ketchup
  • Mustard

Ingredients for The Thousand Island Dressing

  • cup  Nancy’s Skinny Ranch Dressing or reduced-fat mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons chili sauce or ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons pickle relish
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika


  • To make grilled onions: Place sliced onions on a microwave-safe plate.  Cook for 5-6 minutes in microwave until onions are soft. In a large nonstick pan, add olive oil and heat.  Add cooked onions and 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce.  Sauté on medium-high heat until onions are very soft and browned, about 8 minutes.  Stir often.  Keep warm or reheat before serving.
  • Lightly oil grill and heat barbecue to medium.
  • In a large bowl, add ground beef, egg white, grated onions, Worcestershire sauce, seasoning salt and pepper.  Using your hands or a fork, gently mix together.  Handle the meat as little as possible–the more you work it, the tougher it gets.
  • Shape mixture into 6 patties.  Form patties as large as the bun since they shrink when cooked.  Place burgers on grill, close lid, and cook until NO LONGER PINK INSIDE, turning once, about 5 minutes per side.  If using an instant-read thermometer, it should read 160F.  Try not to abuse your burgers by pressing with a spatula, pricking with a fork, or turning frequently as precious juices will be lost!
  • Top each patty with cheese during the last minute of cooking.
  • Remove patties and add to buns. Top each with tomato slices and grilled onions.  Let everyone dress their own.  Serve with condiments such as thousand island dressing, ketchup, and mustard.

Instructions for The Thousand Island Dressing

  • In a small bowl mix together all the dressing ingredients.  Refrigerate until ready to use.
  • Makes about ½ cup


Serving: 1burgerCalories: 422kcalCarbohydrates: 47gProtein: 33gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 50mgSodium: 834mgFiber: 6gSugar: 10gBlue Smart Points: 12Green Smart Points: 12Plus Points: 10
Tried this recipe?Let me know how it was!

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