Good Eats: Bean Burgers

For the last while, I have been trying to find my way back to eating a more vegetarian based diet. About two years ago, I went vegetarian for 6 months and it really made an impact on me physically. I lost some weight, felt lighter with less digestive issues and bloating, and found that it stabilized my energy levels.

Now before you proclaim “Oh great, another damn Hippie” and hit the back button, having a few vegetarian recipes under your belt can be a great resource — even for carnivores — for when there is nothing (aka. No meat) in the fridge/freezer, have a modestly stocked pantry, and maybe just don’t feel like doing a grocery run — which is something that happens to me A LOT. So how about giving it a chance?

I took to the web and turned to my trusty google to seek an “Easy Bean Burger”. I am not a huge fan of complicated (not to mention I had very little happening in my fridge and pantry) or time consuming, so I checked out a couple of the results and settled on a recipe that looked easy (workable with what little ingredients I had on hand) and yummy from How Sweet Eats. Time to roll up the sleeves and get ready to give it a go.

I couldn’t follow the recipe with 100% accuracy, but figured I could still make it work.

I had most of the ingredients except the spices and the sour cream for the Avocado Cream Sauce. This was definitely not a deal breaker.

Now I’m not gonna go into all the step by step directions since you can just go to the link provided above if your interested in trying this dish. However, I will share a few things I would do a bit differently through my experience.

First, if your food processor is a small one like mine, split up the beans into two batches and then bring all together into one bowl. I ended up having to come back through it with a masher to break up the beans, and I had some that were over processed. As well, I found the mixture a little too wet so I would add a bit more of the crumbs to get a better binding and consistency.

The mixture had a very similar consistency to hamburger, which was surprising.

I fried — at about med to med high — the patties in a pan, since our BBQ is temporarily out of commission (I think that if I was going to grill these, I would do it on tin foil first then transfer for some quick grill marks). I really wanted to try and get some good crust.

While the patties fried away, I started on the avocado spread. I ended up just mashing it up with a squeeze of lemon and salt and pepper. Simplicity at its finest! I also had a tomato, so it too found its way to the burger. For added crunch, the bun got toasty.

How did it stack up? It was actually pretty tasty, aside from being a bit too smooshy. LOL! I think that could be easily remedied by add more crumbs and by making the patty less thick. For some added dimension next time I would like to add some caramelized mushrooms and onions in the mixture to take it to the next level. I can also see these easily turned into “meat” balls for my next spaghetti.

So yes, I think I’ve found a vegetarian burger that will completely do in a pinch and hit full protein satisfaction!

Do you have a veggie burger recipe to die for? If so, I’d love to hear about it! Share it with me in the comments.

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