You guys, I don’t even know where to start, other than, I MADE A VEGGIE BURGER THAT’S GRILLABLE.
If you’ve followed Minimalist Baker for a while, you know I’ve made many veggie burgers in the past – exhibit A, B, C, D, and E. Yes, it’s an obsession – I know.
But none of these burgers have been truly “grillable” due to their fragile texture. And because we aren’t currently grill owners, I usually opt for baking or sautéing anyway.
Recently, however we’ve been attending more summer BBQs and I’ve been receiving emails from people asking for a burger that will hold up on the grill.
Friends, I’ve found the solution. Bonus? It’s so easy.
This burger requires just 10 ingredients (give or take a spice) and comes together in 30 minutes (once your brown rice is cooked).
Blend toasted walnuts with spices
Mash black beans
Add remaining ingredients
Stir/mash like a madwoman/madman.
All that’s left to do is form them into patties and fire up the grill (or skillet).
I tested these burgers on both the grill and skillet and am happy to report they’re fabulous either way.
You do get a bit more “char” and blackening on the grill, whereas with sautéing you get a more evenly browned surface. So pick and choose by which texture you prefer.
Loaded with healthy ingredients
& Seriously tasty
Oh, and did I mention each burger (one of five) has nearly 10 grams of protein?! Trust me, you’re going to go home satisfied after eating one of these (especially when paired with a hearty salad, sweet potato wedges, or crispy baked matchstick fries).
If you try this recipe let us know what you think! Leave a comment and rate it – it’s so helpful for us and other readers. And don’t forget to snap a picture and tag it #minimalistbaker on Instagram so we can see! I’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 5 (burgers)
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 3 Weeks (see notes)
Does it keep? 2-3 Days
US Customary – Metric
- 1 cup cooked brown rice*
- 1 cup raw walnuts (or sub bread crumbs)
- 1/2 Tbsp avocado oil (plus more for cooking)
- 1/2 medium white onion (finely diced // 1/2 onion yields ~3/4 cup)
- 1 Tbsp each chili powder, cumin powder, and smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp each sea salt and black pepper (plus more for coating burgers)
- 1 Tbsp coconut sugar (or sub organic brown or muscovado sugar)
- 1 1/2 cups cooked black beans* (well rinsed, drained and patted dry)
- 1/3 cup panko bread crumbs (if gluten-free, use gluten-free bread crumbs)
- 3-4 Tbsp vegan BBQ sauce
If your brown rice isn’t cooked yet, start there by following this method for the best results. Otherwise, move onto the next step.
Heat skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add raw walnuts and toast for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently, until fragrant and golden brown. Let cool and move onto the next step.
In the meantime, heat the same skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add oil and onion. Season with a bit of salt and pepper and sauté for 3-4 minutes, or until onion is fragrant, soft, and translucent. Remove from heat and set aside.
Once walnuts are cooled, add to blender or food processor with chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, salt, pepper and coconut sugar and blend until a fine meal (see photo) is achieved. Set aside.
To a large mixing bowl, add drained, dried black beans and mash well with a fork, leaving only a few whole beans (see photo).
Next add cooked rice, spice-walnut mixture, sautéed onion, panko bread crumbs, BBQ sauce, and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon for 1-2 minutes, or until a moldable dough forms. If dry, add extra 1-2 Tbsp (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) BBQ sauce. If too wet, add more panko bread crumbs. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
For larger burgers, divide into 5 patties (1/2 cup in size // amount as original recipe is written), or form 10 smaller burgers (1/4 cup in size // amount as original recipe is written). To help form the patties, line your 1/2 or 1/4 measuring cup with plastic wrap and pack with burger mixture. Press down to pack firmly, then lift out by the plastic wrap’s edge, and slightly flatten with hands to form a 3/4-inch thick patty. Set on a baking sheet or plate for grilling.
If grilling, heat the grill at this time and brush the grill surface with oil to ease cooking. Otherwise, heat the same skillet you used earlier to medium heat.
Once skillet is hot, add just enough oil to lightly coat the bottom of your skillet, then add your burgers – only as many as will comfortably fit in the pan. Otherwise, add burgers to the grill and close lid.
Cook for 3-4 minutes or until well browned on the underside, then flip gently. They aren’t as firm as meat burgers, but will definitely hold their shape. Reduce heat if cooking/browning too quickly. Cook for 3-4 minutes on other side.
Remove burgers from heat to let cool slightly, and prepare any other toppings/sides at this time (such as grilling/toasting your buns).
Serve burgers as is, or on toasted buns with desired toppings. Leftovers keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. See notes for freezing/reheating instructions.
*To cook rice, I recommend this method from Saveur. It yields fluffy, perfect rice, which is key to keeping these burgers from becoming too wet or gummy in texture. // Prep time does not include cooking rice.
*One 15-ounce (425 g) can of black beans yields only 1 1/4 cups black beans. So if using canned, be sure to grab two cans (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size)! Also, if black beans are unsalted, add 1/4 tsp extra salt to burger mixture (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
*For a simple burger sauce mix 2 parts vegan mayo and 1 part ketchup. Add hot sauce or Sriracha for extra heat.
*To freeze for later, cook burgers as instructed on grill or skillet. Then set on a baking sheet or plate and freeze. Once frozen completely, seal in a freezer-safe bag or container and store for up to 3 weeks. Reheat in a 375 degree F oven on a bare baking sheet for 20-30 minutes, or until warmed through and golden brown (or in the microwave for 1-2 minutes).
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with the lesser amount of BBQ sauce and without a bun or toppings.
Serving: 1 burgers Calories: 314 Carbohydrates: 36.5 g Protein: 9.4 g Fat: 15.9 g Saturated Fat: 1.6 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 10.19 g Monounsaturated Fat: 3.19 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 550 mg Potassium: 395 mg Fiber: 8.4 g Sugar: 5.4 g Vitamin A: 975 IU Vitamin C: 2.36 mg Calcium: 76.95 mg Iron: 3.25 mg