By Kim Robson:
When faced with limited vegetarian options in restaurants, I can almost always fall back on a veggie burger. The frozen patties are usually from MorningStar Farms, and they’re okay in a pinch. Sometimes even the meat eaters like veggie patties for a change of pace and a touch of health. But the best veggie burgers, by far, are the ones made from scratch. Below are four recipes for delicious and unusual veggie burgers that’ll have your family and guests coming back for seconds.
The ”Bleeding” Beet Burger
Recently, a veggie burger made with beets made headlines. Produced by Beyond Meat, it looks, feels, cooks and tastes exactly like beef, and packs a whopping 20 grams of plant-based protein (mostly from peas). The fun part is that the interior has the reddish color of a medium rare burger! Look for Beyond Burgers in the meat section of your grocer.
Want to try making it at home? Try this recipe for Smoky Black Bean Beet Burgers from The Minimalist Baker. They’re hearty, smoky, savory, flavorful, healthful, tender and moist on the inside, perfectly crisp on the outside, and perfect for satisfying killer burger cravings. The raw beets impart a deep magenta hue that makes them irresistibly beautiful.
Smoky BBQ Sweet Potato Chickpea Burgers
These burgers from The Vegan 8 avoid all the usual problems with chickpeas (garbanzo beans): they’re not too dry, not too crumbly, and they don’t taste too strongly of hummus. The barbecue sauce lends a sweet and smoky moisture that’s enhanced by the roasted sweet potato. I recommend using store-bought barbecue sauce just to keep things extra simple with only eight ingredients. Click here for the recipe.
Portobello & Black Bean Burger
There’s nothing more delicious and filling than a plain old roasted Portobello mushroom cap as a replacement for a burger patty. This recipe from The Kitchen Whisperer goes a step beyond, adding protein- and umami-rich black beans and walnuts. When shaping them, she recommends you have a bowl of water to dip your hands into, as the mixture is soft and will stick to dry hands (good advice for all of these recipes). These gorgeous burgers look stunning because you can really see the different ingredients and textures inside.
Spicy Cheesy Brown Rice Burgers
This recipe from Food & Wine calls for ingredients most of us already have in our kitchens: brown rice, shredded cheese, frozen peas, pumpkin seeds, canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. And it’s super simple to make by just pulsing everything in a food processor. They’d be amazing in a pita pocket with lettuce, tomato slices, sour cream and salsa, or you can serve them traditional-style on a bun or roll.