We are now in day 3 of our “Great Salad Challenge” on facebook! Over 600 people have joined so far, there are lots of great salad ideas if you are interested, please join in. We think a salad can be a meal all by itself, but if you prefer something to go with your salad, why not try a fabulous plant-strong burger?
The veggie burger. It has been made fun of, mocked and has been the joke of many menu’s. A frozen patty of something that you are unsure of, and if you used just enough mustard and ketchup it might be tasty.
But, if you’ve been paying attention, veggie burgers are making a come back. They are being taken seriously, and for good reason – they are easy to make and really tasty. There are also tons of ways of making them. And we’re going to tell you how to make a lot of different veggie burgers, once you get the hang of it, you will be having veggie burgers every day, for lunch, for dinner, sometimes for breakfast JUST because you can! You will bring them to the office, pack them in your kids lunch boxes and people from all over will want to know what your secret is to looking so healthy, and you will tell them – it’s the plant-strong burger.
(we might have over-exaggerated)
Back to the plant-strong burger. We’re going to break this down, and hopefully it will make sense. If it comes out a disaster it is not a plant-strong burger, it is great ‘meat’ crumble for a plant-strong burrito! You just can’t go wrong.
1 Pick your bean/lentil/peas (you will need 2 cups COOKED)
Lentils (any color)
(we’re sure any kind of bean you can dream up would work just fine)
2. Pick your starch (1 cup)
Dry Whole Wheat Bread Crumbs or whole grain gluten free bread crumbs
Uncooked Quick Oatmeal
Cooked Quinoa Cooked Millet Cooked Amaranth Cooked Buckwheat
Cooked brown rice. (you can also use a wild rice if you like)
3. Pick a vegetable (or a few vegetables) : dice them! If you pick more than one vegetable, you will want to decrease the amount you use, probably by at least half. So if you use carrots and celery – use 1 rib of celery and 1 carrot stick.
Celery (about 2 ribs)
Carrot (about 2 sticks)
Onion (about 1 small onion)
Mushrooms (about 1 cup)
Jalapeno (1 or 2 depending on how spicy you like things)
4. SPICE! Go to town with spices. Our general rule is just to evenly coat whatever we are making with the spice, or if using fresh herbs/spices start with 1/4 of a teaspoon and go from there. Because we’re not using any ingredients that can kill you like raw eggs or meat, go ahead and taste as you go!
Nutritional Yeast (which will give it a more cheese like flavor)
Curry powder (works well with chickpea burgers)
Turmeric (use a very small amount – a few dashes will do) works great with chickpea burgers.
We know that we did not list every spice (our apologies to the fans of certain spices left out) but really any spice you like will do just fine – get creative! Italian burgers? Mexican burgers? Jamaican-jerk burgers? Whatever you can dream up!
5. Liquid: 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup start with a 1/4 and add as needed.
Low Sodium Vegetable broth
Liquid from cooked beans.
Non dairy unsweetened milk
For a different taste you can try 1/4 cup of pumpkin puree, mashed sweet potato or butternut squash puree. If you opt to add a puree you may need to use less liquid overall.
Ground flax seed – combine 2 tbs of ground flax seed with 3tbs of warm water. Set aside and let it gel a little.
Now to make your burgers.
Pre-heat oven to 350
Have a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper ready to go.
1. Put cooked beans in a big mixing bowl. Mash them up – however you get the job done is the right way, personally we just use our hands.
2. Add your starch. You will want to mix the starch and the bean really well – we also use our hands for this.
3. Add your vegetables (you can cook them first if you like, dice them first and then put them in a pan with a little water or low sodium vegetable broth and cook them till the are done, no need to add any oil)
4. Add spices
5. Add liquid
6. Add flax. (be sure to follow instructions).
7. Mix every thing – you can use a spoon, but we just use our hands, because it’s just easier that way.
8. Form patties (see you were going to have to use your hands anyway).
9. Put patties on parchment paper lined cookie sheet.
10. Stick in oven for 15-20 minutes or until they are looking slightly crispy on the top. We generally like flipping them half way through.
11. Do a happy dance around your house while you are waiting for plant-strong burgers to cook. This step is absolutely necessary.
12. Take out, bask in your greatness for a minute.
13. Serve on a nice whole grain bun with all of your favorite burger accessories, grilled onions, grilled mushrooms, tomato,hummus, ketchup, mustard, really just go wild. You can also serve it on a nice bed of leafy greens. Also, serve with baked sweet potato fries, it will make for an even happier experience.
This should make 4-5 decent sized burgers or 8-10 smaller burgers. You can freeze them as well.
*Tips: Too crumbly? Add more liquid. Too watery? Add more starch.
Want an exact recipe? Check out our lentil burger recipe.
Eat, enjoy, dream of the next combination you will make!