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roasted no-beans plant-based burgers
by Jackie Newgent | May 2, 2021 | 1 Comment
These roasted no-beans plant-based burgers are the result of a friend’s request. (Yep, just ask and I create!) She can’t eat beans or gluten and hadn’t yet found a tasty, “real veggie,” veggie burger that she could eat. So, I created this recipe for her … and all the rest of us (even if we do eat beans and gluten)!
In addition to heartiness, beans and lentils provide a “stickiness” to veggie burgers so that they’ll hold together well. Since there are no beans or lentils here, that desirable “stickiness” is created with a “paste” of ground chia seeds, pumpkin puree (I actually use baby food!), ketchup, and coconut aminos or tamari.
By the way, if you’re not a ketchup fan, simply swap it with additional pumpkin purée.
The combination of sautéed eggplant and baby bella mushrooms provides heartiness. Coarsely chopped oats offer body and chewiness. And you’ll get a flavor pow from garlic, coarsely ground black pepper, sea salt, chili powder, ground fennel seeds (do this in a coffee grinder or pepper mill), smoked paprika, and nutritional yeast flakes.
By the way … the seasonings here create a versatile burger flavor-wise. But if you’d like a burger patty that has a distinct global flavor, change up the chili powder and fennel seeds, plus add fresh herbs, if you like. For instance, for a Middle Eastern-style burger, use cinnamon and cumin, plus add some minced fresh mint. For a burger with Pan-Asian flair, use ginger and a pinch of five spice powder, plus add some minced fresh cilantro or scallion greens.
Also, in addition to or instead of these swaps, you can change up the burger toppings. (More on that below!)
To make the plant-based patties, you’ll mix all of these ingredients together, form into patties, brush with olive oil, and roast until firm and browned.
How to enjoy
Stuff the roasted patties into burger buns of choice and add your favorite toppings. This is where it can get really fun. Watch me top my burgers HERE!
Need inspiration? You can go all-American with your veggie burger by adding lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese (ideally plant-based), pickles or pickled vegetables, and my Special Sauce (see recipe below). Savor them in Mediterranean style with peppery greens, tomatoes, pickled onions, and a tahini sauce or plant-based tzatziki. Try a Tex-Mex twist with barbecue sauce and coleslaw or guacamole. Or go glam with black truffle everything!
For a cookout
These roasted no-beans plant-based burgers are cookout-ready, too! Make the patties in advance and chill. When the grill is ready, brush the pre-roasted patties with a little additional olive oil; grill over direct medium-high heat to fully heat through and form distinct grill marks (ideally flipping just once); then serve in buns with desired toppings. I seriously can’t wait to do a cookout with my fully-vaxxed friends … soon!
These roasted no-beans plant-based burgers are full of flavor and made with 100% plants. The patties are based on eggplant, baby bella mushrooms, and oats. The “secret” ingredient … pumpkin baby food! Hint: For a cookout, roast these patties in advance, chill, and grill.
3 tablespoons ground chia seeds
1/4 cup (65 grams) pumpkin puree (try baby food!) or leftover mashed potatoes
3 tablespoons ketchup (ideally unsweetened)
2 teaspoons coconut aminos or naturally-brewed tamari
1/4 cup (60 milliliters) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 large (1 1/4-pound/570-gram) eggplant, small diced (do not peel)
8 ounces (225 grams) baby bella mushrooms, finely chopped in a food processor
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
1 1/4 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon fennel seeds, ground, or minced fresh rosemary to taste
3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 1/4 cups (125 grams) old-fashioned rolled oats, coarsely chopped in a food processor*
3 tablespoons (15 grams) nutritional yeast flakes
6 seeded whole grain buns*
In a small bowl, stir together the chia seeds, ketchup, pumpkin puree, and coconut aminos. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 400°F/205°C. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper.
Heat 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters) of the olive oil in an extra-large, deep cast iron skillet or a wok over medium-high. Add the eggplant, mushrooms, garlic, salt, black pepper, chili powder, ground fennel seeds, and smoked paprika and sauté until the veggies are fully softened, about 12 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.
Add the chia mixture, chopped oats, and nutritional yeast to the eggplant-baby bella mixture and stir to evenly combine. Set aside for 5 minutes to slightly cool and allow oats to absorb moisture.
Onto the baking sheet, divide mixture into 6 mounds, about 2/3 cup each. Then pat into firm patties, about 4-inch/10-centimeter diameter each. Brush tops and sides of the patties with remaining 2 tablespoons oil, and roast until firm and browned, about 35 minutes, no flipping required.
Serve the patties in buns with any toppings you desire, such as lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese (ideally plant-based), pickles or pickled vegetables, avocado, and condiments of choice. Burger patties keep well for 4 days in the fridge or a month in the freezer.
*Choose gluten-free versions, if need.
Special Sauce: Stir together 1/2 cup (120 grams) mayo (ideally plant-based), 1 1/2 teaspoons each Dijon mustard and ketchup, 1/4 teaspoon red wine vinegar, and 1/8 teaspoon each cayenne and freshly ground black pepper.
Looking for other cookout-worthy recipes? Check out my grilled mediterranean avocado toast (see recipe HERE), plant-based pesto pasta salad with grilled grape tomatoes (see recipe HERE), or roasted vegan carrot hot dogs (see recipe HERE — roast in advance, chill, and grill).