I used to love burgers. A lot. But after becoming a vegetarian 5 years ago, I realized that there aren’t many vegetarian-friendly burgers out there. At least not in the well-known burger places. Do you have the same problem? I know how annoying it can feel. However, when you can’t find a particular ready-made vegan food that you love, make it yourself!
These crunchy black bean burgers are not only a real comfort food, but they’re also high in protein. Of course, they’re completely vegan and super delicious.
If you’ve never tried black beans, you should. These little beans might not look very special, but in reality, they’re packed with nutrients.
Black beans are super high in protein which helps to build your muscles and cells. 21 g of protein per 100 g of black beans, comparing to beef which contains 14 g of protein per 100 g.
Also, black beans are a good source of magnesium which is beneficial for protein synthesis, nerve function, and blood sugar control. As black beans contain high levels of antioxidants they have cancer-fighting properties as well.
Now it’s recipe time
To make 5 crunchy black bean burgers, you’ll need:
- 2 cups of cooked or canned black beans (I used cooked)
- 2 carrots
- 1 tbsp of finely chopped sun dried tomatoes
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 large onion
- 2 tbsp of finely chopped parsley
- 2 tbsp of buckwheat flour (or any other flour)
- 1 tbsp of flaxseeds
- 1 tsp of dark soy sauce
- olive oil for cooking
- salt & pepper
- 5 burger buns
- optional topping include: tomato, vegan mayo, lettuce, Dijon mustard, tomato sauce (feel free to use any other ingredients if you like)
- Make a flaxseed egg. Combine 1 tbsp of flaxseeds with 3 tbsp of water. Let the mixture sit for at least 10 minutes. This is one of the best vegan alternatives for eggs.
- Chop garlic and onion. Grin carrots. Heat a pan, sprinkle with some olive oil and add the dark soy sauce. Sauté garlic, onions, and carrots for about 5 to 10 minutes.
- Put the black beans into a large bowl and mash with a fork or a potato pounder. Do go too hard on them, leave some pieces for texture. Add flax egg, sautéed veggies, sun-dried tomatoes, parsley, flour and some salt and pepper into the bowl. Stir well.
- Using your hands, make 5 patties and cook them in a pan for 3 to 5 minutes on each side until crisp.
- Make the burgers by combining all optional toppings. My burger looked like this – bottom bun, mayo, tomato slice, lettuce, black bean patty, tomato sauce, vegan mayo and top bun.
Why Black Beans?
Black beans were my choice for this recipe for a variety of reasons. Firstly, their nutritional profile is impressive, as I’ve already mentioned. But beyond that, black beans have a rich, slightly sweet flavor that adds depth to any dish.
Their texture, when cooked and mashed, is perfect for forming into patties – firm enough to hold together, yet soft and creamy on the inside. Plus, black beans are incredibly versatile. They absorb the flavors of the ingredients they’re cooked with, making them an excellent base for a variety of seasonings and spices.
Customizing Your Burger
One of the best things about making your own burgers is the ability to customize them to your liking. While I’ve given you my favorite combination, feel free to experiment with your own. For instance, you could switch out the regular burger buns for whole grain ones for added fiber.
If you’re a fan of vegan cheeses, a slice of smoked gouda or sharp cheddar would add a nice tang. As for veggies, thinly sliced avocado, pickled onions, or even a spicy arugula could add a new dimension to your burger. The possibilities are endless!
When it comes to serving these black bean burgers, I like to keep things simple. A side of sweet potato fries or a fresh salad works well. If you’re looking for a drink to pair, a chilled glass of homemade lemonade or iced tea complements the flavors of the burger nicely. Of course, feel free to serve your burger with whatever sides you enjoy most!
Storage and Reheating Tips
If you find yourself with leftover patties, don’t worry! They store well in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Just make sure to let them cool completely before storing them in an airtight container.
When you’re ready to eat them, you can reheat the patties in a pan over medium heat until they’re warmed through. Alternatively, you can warm them in the oven at 350°F for about 10-15 minutes. If you’ve made a big batch, these patties can also be frozen for up to 3 months. Just be sure to separate them with parchment paper before freezing to prevent them from sticking together.
Embracing a vegetarian lifestyle doesn’t mean you have to give up on the foods you love. It’s all about finding creative, delicious alternatives that not only satisfy your cravings but also align with your dietary choices. These crunchy black bean burgers are a testament to that.
Packed with protein, rich in nutrients, and absolutely scrumptious, they’re a perfect example of how vegetarian food can be just as satisfying, if not more so, than their meat-based counterparts.
So, the next time you find yourself missing a good old-fashioned burger, remember this recipe. With a bit of preparation and a dash of creativity, you can create a meal that’s not only good for you but also kind to the planet. Happy cooking!