Let me start this post by saying I'm a pretty serious carnivore. I love a good steak or a good burger – maybe more than any other food.
But due to a number of circumstances, I've recently set my sights on the veggie burger.
1) There are a lot of vegetarians out there and I want to feed them something delicious when they come over to my house.
2) Store bought, frozen veggie burgers, are horrible.
3) Sometimes I like a change and a really spicy, tasty veggie burger can hit the spot just as much as a traditional burger.
Are these burgers as fast as tossing some ground beef on the grill? Definitely not, but I think they will pleasantly surprise you if you give them a chance.
RECIPE: Homemade Veggie Burgers
Obviously for a veggie burger, you're going to need a lot of veggies! You could substitute a lot of veggies for the ones I used in the recipe. I've made these with some beets in them (bright red burgers) and a version with spinach as well.
But as a base, you really just want veggies that hold up well and have a lot of flavor.
Besides the veggies, you need a base for the burgers to hold everything together. For this I just pulsed a few cans of chickpeas with a few eggs in the blender. Be sure not to over-process them. Some texture is great.
Besides the base and the veggies, I added a good amount of spice to mine also just to kick up the flavor even more.
Again, you could leave out any of these you don't like or substitute a wide range of spices depending on your tastes.
To make the burgers, just cook the veggies for a few minutes until they are soft in a hot skillet. Then add in the spices and continue to cook for a minute or two.
Cooking the spices will make them really fragrant.
Then stir the veggie mixture into your chickpea/egg base.
This will be a really wet mixture which is why you need some bread crumbs and oats to absorb some of the moisture. Add those into the mix, stir it well to combine, and let the burger mixture sit for about 15 minutes so the oats can absorb some of that liquid.
Then you just make large patties like you would with beef!
As far as cooking goes, you could definitely cook these in a cast iron skillet, but grilling is always the best in my opinion.
And a burger isn't a burger, in my opinion, without some cheese!
Toss these guys on a toasted bun and you'll have some really happy friends.
I would put these up against a beef burger any day of the week. They are really flavorful and have a great texture.
If you're willing to try something a bit different, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised how great a veggie burger can taste!Nick believes that everyone should be an equal opportunity eater. Check out his blog, Macheesmo and his Tablespoon profile