Friday, June 4, 2010

Beet Burgers

Admittedly, in a pinch I tend to rely on frozen vegan veggie burgers you can get in any grocery store. I don't like doing that... in my book that counts as processed food and I try my best to stay away from anything processed.

In my quest to find an easy recipe for veggie burgers that consist of non processed ingredients I have stumbled upon the fact that you don't need soy or wheat to make a great burger. All you need are a couple of beets and other things you likely have in your kitchen right now. Not only do these taste fabulous but they are great for you, too. This recipe is very versatile, you can really modify this with any veggies or nuts you have on hand but the beets and the oats are a must. Beet Burgers

2 whole beets, grated (I do mine in the Cuisinart)
1/3 cup cooked oats
2/3 cups uncooked oats
2 tbsp sesame seeds
1/2 green pepper minced
1/2 Spanish onion minced
2 shitake mushrooms chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 stalk celery minced
1 tsp nutritional yeast
2 tbsp fresh basil, rough chopped
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil for cooking burgers

Mix all ingredients in a mixing bowl until incorporated. Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Form into patties and place into heated oil. Cook until browned on the outside and warmed through on the inside. Be sure to flip them halfway through cooking so that each side is nicely browned. Serve on a whole grain roll or pita with your favorite toppings.


  1. GREAT flavor! i had trouble sticking mine together though, had to add alot more oatmeal, any ideas?

  2. Hmmmm... three of the four of mine stayed together pretty well. I did let them brown very well on the first side before flipping them. The one that did not stick together as well I crumbled in the pan and let get crunchy and used as topping on a salad- it was good.

    You could try baking in the oven instead at about 350 degrees.

    I make these often, let me see about changing it up next time and I will let you know. Maybe just using one beet instead of two? More to come. Glad you thought they tasted good. I LOVE beets!

  3. OK, so I figured I would try this vegan stuff - and it went pretty well.

    Here's what I did: (feeds 2 with leftovers)
    1 Cup of "Inca Red" Quinoa
    1/4 Cup finely chopped Vidalia onion
    1 large lobe of garlic (thinly sliced)
    8 thinly-sliced baby bella mushrooms
    1/4 Cup corn
    1/4 Black beans
    1 stick "Vegan Buttery Sticks"
    1 package extra firm Tofu (only used half)
    1/4 cup roughly chopped Cilantro
    1 large head of cauliflower
    1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
    8 sprigs of asparagus
    Some baking string is also very useful.

    Start steaming the cauliflower for about 10 minutes.

    While that's heating up, cut the tofu into 1/4 thick sheets. These will be curled into about 2" tubes and stuffed - I used a Christmas Tree cookie cutter to make a dovetail so the ends would interlock (kind of a pain but worth the presentation kudos). You can tie these up with the cotton baking string - I used 4 cut-off stalks from Asparagus sprigs to wrap them around and hold the shape.

    Then bring 1 cup of quinoa to a boil in 2 cups of water, reduce heat and simmer covered for about 15 minutes.
    About five minutes before the Quinoa is ready, melt the vegan butter in a large pan and add the garlic until it becomes aromatic, then add the onion, corn, black-beans and baby bellas next, add fresh ground pepper, a pinch of cayenne and season to taste (my version was very Mexican) and keep it moving until the onions are transparent and the mushrooms are tender... Add the quinoa (now finshed), mix well, cover and set on another burner on the lowest heat (stir when you get a chance).

    In another large pan add the other 1/2 of the Vegan butter stick, fresh ground pepper, chopped cilantro and crank up the heat to high and get it really hot. Place the Tofu tubes (seam down) on the pan and sear them - Rotate until the whole tube is golden brown (ideally the celantro sticks to the tubes as you sear).

    When you have four completely seared tufo tubes, upright them on a plate and stuff with the quinoa/mushroom/onion/corn/beans mix.

    By this time, the Cauliflower is probably done... remove from steamer and add celantro, and vegan butter then mash (preferrably with an immersion blender).

    To plate:
    Add a small amount of quinoa to the plate, slice the stuffed tofu tubes on a bias and arrange them vertically on in the quinoa. Add a nice mound of mashed cauliflower and dress with Asparagus sprigs (uh oh - forgot... you have to make asparagus too!).

    Well, after all that my wife (who's not a tofu fan) thought I was going to walk on water next. Instead I just brought her a glass of wine (I didn't make it myself)...

    So I hope I haven't crammed your blog with too much rambling - but I really enjoyed the meal and enjoyed making it too. This could become a habit (No comments from Brian Mart are necessary!)

    Sorry - no pictures or flash photography!


    Ed Anderson

  4. I love burgers made with beetroot and white beans. I call them "Beanström's burgers" because they are a kind of variation of Finnish "Lindström's burgers", traditional burgers made with meat and beetroot. They also hold together very well, though they are made with mashed, not grated beetroot - I've been thinking about trying it with grated beetroot sometime to see if the texture would be nicer.

    Your spices sound better than mine, though. The addition of walnuts and sesame seeds in particular sounds nice.

  5. Ed- nice job! Sounds really good and in my mibd's eye a visual winner. Pictures nex time!If I make it I will take pictures.

    Maija- anything with beets is a winner to me. The addition of white beans sounds divine. I am going to try that next go around with beet burgers!