Black Bean Burger
Vegetarian food sometimes gets a bad rap when it tries to imitate food that is usually eaten as meat. If you try to pretend something is something else it will never taste the same. Zucchini noodles are not wheat noodles, tofu is not chicken and black bean burgers are not hamburgers. Vegetarian burgers are good because they are actually good. Not because they mimic a hamburger as much as possible. The patties can be filled with lots of different flavors; some spicy, some nutty, some filled with quinoa or rice.
This black bean burger recipe is one of my favorites. I let the black beans be the primary flavor and cook the patties very thin so they form a crust on the outside and are not left gooey on the inside. I do use an egg as a bind so this particular recipe is not fully vegetarian.
And the fries! Oh, the fries! Who knew you could make crispy fries in the oven without deep frying in loads of oil. Just be careful because once you realize how easy these are to make you’ll be making fries for lunch, fries for snacks, fries for dinners. you’ll be picking meals based on whether you can have fries with them or not. Its a dangerous slippery slope!
Black Bean Burgers Recipe
Makes 6 patties.
Black Bean Burgers
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2 Tbsp fresh parsley leaves (substitute 1 tsp dried parsley)
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp hot sauce (or Siracha)
- 1 chipotle pepper (canned)
- 1/8 tsp cumin
- 1 Tbsp tahini (optional)
- 1 tsp coconut oil (substitute olive oil)
- Pinch of garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp coriander
- 1 egg
- 2 Tbsp chickpea flour (substitute whole-wheat flour)
- 1/8 tsp kosher salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- Olive oil
- Sandwich buns and toppings – tomato, lettuce, onion, etc.
(serves 1; increase potatoes as needed)
- 3 small Yukon potatoes
- Kosher salt
- Black pepper
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
Black Bean Burgers
- Peel and mince 1 shallot.
- Drain and rinse 1 can of black beans.
- In a food processor add 2 Tbsp of fresh parsley leaves, 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 tsp hot sauce, 1 chipotle pepper and sauce, 1/8 tsp cumin, 1 Tbsp tahini, 1 tsp coconut oil, a pinch of garlic powder, 1/8 tsp coriander, 1 egg, 2 tablespoons flour, 1/8 tsp kosher salt and 1/8 tsp black pepper. Pulse until combined.
- Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large, non-stick skillet. Add the shallot and cook 2-3 minutes until soft. Add all but 2 Tbsp of the black beans and cook for 1 more minute.
- Keep the skillet over medium heat and toast the inside of the sandwich buns.
- While the buns toast, add the shallot and warm beans to the mixture in the food processor (not the reserved beans). Run the food processor until the mixture becomes a mash. Stir in the extra black beans and lightly mash the beans with a fork.
- Remove the toasted buns from the skillet and add another drizzle of olive oil.
- Wet your hands and scoop about a 1/4 cup of the bean mix into your hands and shape into a patty (it will be very wet). Add the patty to the skillet and spread as needed into a circular shape (it will look similar to pancake batter). Add two to three more patties, depending on what will fit into the skillet.
- After 3- 4 minutes use a spatula to start gently moving the patty. When the bottom feels firm, flip to the second side. Be gentle – the patties are tender! Cook for another 3-4 minutes on the second side. (If needed, add a little more oil to the pan to help make a crust.) Repeat until all of the patties are cooked.
- Build your sandwiches – toasted bun, 2 patties and your favorite toppings.
- Cut 3 small, Yukon potatoes in half lengthwise. Cut each half again, lengthwise. Cut into 1/2 -inch matchsticks.
- Add 3 Tbsp of olive oil to a small, foil lined baking sheet. Place the pan in the oven and preheat to 450.
- Place the potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring the water just to a boil (about 10 minutes) and drain the potatoes.
- When the pan is pre-heated and the oil hot, add the potatoes. Toss them in the hot oil and a generous amount of salt and pepper. (Be careful when you add the potatoes to the hot oil, it may spit.)
- Cook for 20 minutes. Flip the potatoes and cook another 10-15 minutes until crispy.
Normally when you make burgers you want to cook over high heat and take advantage of the fat in the meat to help create a seasoned crust on the outside of the burger. Think opposite when you make black bean burgers. If you make thick patties and try to cook over high-heat you’ll end up with burgers that are burnt on the outside and gooey on the inside. Black bean burgers don’t have the fat content to help them cook the same way as meat burgers.
When you mix together these patties they are going to feel wet and gooey. It will feel more like you are making pancakes than burgers. I like to use a small amount of mixture in each patty so that the inside cooks thoroughly and the outside will brown without overcooking and becoming dry. Wet your hands before handling the batter so it doesn’t stick to your hands. And don’t be afraid to shape the patties right after you place them in the pan. I try to make them a size that matches my bun. When you build your sandwich, double stack two of the thin patties.
There are a lot of different recipes out there for black bean burgers. What they have in common are various ingredients that make the “glue” that hold the beans together. In this recipe, I use the egg as a binder. The flour and the tahini also help to thicken the mix. I like a little heat so I use the hot sauce and chipotle pepper for depth. Some recipes add nuts or grains, but I wanted to stick as true to the black bean flavor as I could. I’ve made note of some substitutions you can make in this recipe. You can add or adjust the flavors to what you like best. My last advice is don’t get too worried if they fall apart a little bit. They will still taste just as good!
Because I’m usually cooking for one, I cook all of the patties at one time and save the extra in the refrigerator or freezer. They heat up really well for a quick lunch of dinner. I usually get about 6 patties from this recipe, but depending on the size of each one you may end up with 1 more or 1 less.