Saturday, January 25, 2014

Veggie Burgers (glutenfree, soyfree, vegan)

Like with any food you prepare from home, it will always be thousands of times better than any factory-made version. Not only can you ensure the good quality of ingredients, you can have the flexibility of making your own flavor combinations and customized them to your dietary needs. I've never been a fan of store-bought veggie burgers (or maybe was just too scared to try!) They may be marketed as healthy, but in reality, are filled with GMO ingredients, artificial flavorings, highly-processed soy and fillers. 

These recipes are very simple to make, using real, whole food ingredients. You can soak and prepare dried beans in advance, or use ready-to-eat beans for convenience. Leftover roasted/steamed sweet potatoes or pre-cooked rice, millet, or quinoa makes it incredibly easy to just mash together with a few spices. Store extra patties in your freezer for when you need the convenience of something ready-made. Bake, grill or lightly pan-fry them to heat through. 

Stuffed into mushroom caps (cremini)
and baked at 350°F (180°C) for 15 minutes.
It's a great little appetizer!
BEANS/LEGUMES are loaded with fiber, protein, iron, and B vitamins. They're the perfect way to add more plant-based protein into your diet. 
  • To prepare dried beans (1 cup), pick out broken or discolored pieces. Rinse, then soak in ample water for 6 hours or overnight. 
  • Drain and rinse. In a heavy-based pot add the beans and 3-4 cups of water. Bring to a boil, skimming off and discarding the foam. 
  • Cover and simmer for 30-45 minutes until soft. Add 1/2 - 1 teaspoon of sea salt in the last 10 minutes of cooking time. Drain.

I steamed two peeled medium-sized sweet potatoes (one white-fleshed and one orange-fleshed). Mashed up with 1/2 cup millet, 1/2 cup oat flour, 1/2 cup prepared black beans, 1/4 small red onion (finely chopped), 1/4 cup parsley (finely chopped), 1 clove garlic (finely chopped), 1 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp paprika. 1/2 tsp salt. Lightly pan-fry them in an oiled pan until warmed through and crisp on the outside.

Here, I added some kale to the whole batch, and
then some steamed beetroot to a third,
and roasted kabocha to another third of the batch.

If too moist, add a little more flour to absorb the liquid.


2 cups prepared chickpeas/garbanzo beans 
1 small onion, peeled and roughly chopped 
3 cloves of garlic
3 Tbsp fresh cilantro 
3 Tbsp fresh parsley
3 Tbsp oat or rice flour
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander 
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt 
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, optional
2 Tbsp olive oil, to brush onto the patties
1 fresh lemon, to serve
  • In a food processor, process everything except the chickpeas, oil and lemon. 
  • Add the chickpeas and process until coarsely chopped (don’t puree). Pulse a few more times until it looks like it’s about to form into a ball. Add more flour if it’s looking too sticky, or a little water, if it looks too dry. 
  • Cover the mixture with cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. 
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). 
  • Gently form into even golf-ball sized balls, then flatten into thick patties. Place on lined baking sheet, brush each side with oil and bake for 20 minutes, flipping them over once, until heated through. (frozen patties will take longer). Broil or toast them for a minute or two on each side to crisp them up.

1 cup prepared black beans
3/4 cup cooked wild rice
1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1/4 of an onion, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 tsp vinegar or fresh lemon juice
1 tsp oregano, fresh or dried
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, optional
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup rice flour
5 Tbsp fresh parsley or cilantro, finely chopped
1-2 Tbsp water, if necessary

  • Mash the beans with the rest of the ingredients (or process everything together) and form into patties. If it's not sticky enough, add a tablespoon or two of water. Cook on a medium heat in a well-oiled pan for 3-4 minutes on each side to warm through.

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