Better Than Your Frozen Black Bean Burgers
Updated: Jun 29
This unbelievably delicious and simple black bean burger recipe was inspired by Minimalist Baker a few years ago. They're so easy, tasty and nutritious that you'll most likely never buy a frozen veggie patty again. What's really awesome is that you can easily slide parchment paper in between each burger and freeze them for later. Just double the recipe below and make half this week and freeze the other half for future meals. The burger can be a salad topper for dinner, a sandwich for lunch or topped on avocado toast for breakfast.
Not only is it super nutritious but it's an awesome go-to recipe when you have limited time and ingredients. I like to keep certain ingredients on hand to be prepared when time is limited, but I still want something homemade and nutritious. Beans and rice are always in my cabinet as well as staple aromatic veggies like onion and garlic. Another ingredient that I like keeping on hand is either almond or oat flour, since they're so versatile and can be used for many things. Then, of course, the cabinet is full of healing spices — lots of spices! This burger is bursting with flavor from the beautiful spices, which also provide big doses of antioxidants and heath benefits. These can all be used to make this satisfying burger as well as any other veggies you'd like to include. We included arugula, sliced tomato, avocado, cilantro, kimchi and chipotle vegenaise.
Try it for your next grill party or at home on the stovetop. You might be addicted to these!
1 cup cooked short-grain brown rice* (follow package instructions)
1 cup raw walnuts
1 Tbsp avocado oil, plus more for cooking (alternatively you can use veggie broth or water)
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp cumin powder
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp garlic
1 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 BPA free 15-ounce can black beans, drained
1/3 cup almond or oat flour
*Short grain brown rice works better than long grain in helping the burgers form patties. If you find they aren't sticking together, fold 1 flax egg into step 7. 1 flax egg = 1 Tbsp flax meal + 3 Tbsp water. Let sit for 5 minutes before adding to step 7 below. I've also used millet and farro in place of brown rice and they both work well!
How to Make
Cook brown rice as instructed on the package and set aside. Time saver: have rice ready to go ahead of time.
Heat a small skillet over medium heat.
Once hot, add raw walnuts and toast for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently, until fragrant and golden brown. (Keep an eye on them to prevent burning. You just want them toasted.) Set aside and allow to cool.
In the meantime, heat another small to medium skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1/2 Tbsp oil (or veggie broth) and onion. Season with a bit of salt and pepper and sauté for 3-4 minutes, or until onion is fragrant, soft, and translucent. Remove from heat and set aside.
Once walnuts are cooled, add to blender or food processor with chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, turmeric, salt and pepper and blend to a fine meal. Set aside.
Add drained black beans to a large mixing bowl and mash well with a fork or potato masher, leaving only a few whole beans.
Next add cooked rice, spiced walnut mixture, sautéed onion, flour and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon for 1-2 minutes, or until a moldable dough forms. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
Form 6-8 burger patties (depending on size you prefer) and set on a baking sheet or plate for grilling. If grilling, heat the grill and brush with oil to avoid sticking. Otherwise, heat the same skillet you used earlier to medium heat.
Once skillet is warm, lightly coat the bottom of your skillet with oil then add your burgers, about 1/2 inch apart. If there is not enough space for all of them to grill evenly then grill half of the mixture at a time then cook the other half. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until browned on one side, then flip (gently). Cook for 3-4 minutes on other side.
Prepare any other toppings you'd like such as sliced tomato, avocado, sprouts, herbs or vegenaise.
Serve burgers as is, on toasted buns or as a lettuce wrap with added toppings.
Take some photos and share which toppings you add!