Mushroom, Quinoa and White Bean Burgers
I love veggie burgers — the ones at Del Ray Cafe and Holy Cow are especially delicious — but I’ve never been a fan of the frozen kind at the store. Either they try too hard to be meat or they turn into a rubbery puck on the grill. I looked around for some recipes online, taking suggestion here and there, and came up with a version I like using mushroom, quinoa and beans. The recipe is versatile so if you don’t like one of the ingredients you can swap in another.
For this version, which will yield 5-6 burgers, I used:
1/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1 small onion, chopped
1 portobello mushroom, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can of Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I used panko)
A handful of fresh herbs (I used parsley and thyme)
Salt and pepper
First, cook your quinoa according to the package instructions. While the quinoa cooks, saute onion and garlic with a little salt and pepper in olive oil for a few minutes. Then add the mushroom and continue to cook. When the vegetables are soft, turn off the heat and add the beans.
Let the mixture cool a few minutes, add more salt and pepper to taste, then coarsely puree 3/4 of the mix in a blender or food processor. It doesn’t have to be perfectly smooth, chunks are fine. You mainly want the pureed beans to help your burger stay together.
In a bowl combine the pureed bean mix, the rest of the bean/onion/mushroom mix, the cooked quinoa, the egg, breadcrumbs and chopped herbs. It might not look appetizing now, but it gets better.
Shape into patties and saute over med-high heat in a little oil for about 3-4 minutes per side, or until the sides are golden and crispy.
As for consistency, these are delicate like crab cakes, so be careful flipping in your pan.
Quinoa and white beans are pretty mild, so whatever strong flavors you add to the mix or put on top will really enhance your burger. I served mine on a bun with some peppery arugula and tangy goat cheese.
I’ve also used the same basic recipe but swapped black beans for white and red pepper for mushroom. This recipe is just a starting point, so many flavor combinations to try. Enjoy your veggies!