Summer Veggie Burgers
I have a mushroom veggie burger recipe that I consider to be the gold standard of veggie burgers. It’s absolutely my go-to when I’m feeding a vegetarian crowd and I’ll actually make it even for meat eaters because it’s just so good.
Betsy and I invited our nanny over for dinner recently and since she’s vegetarian, it was an obvious option. ONE PROBLEM: She doesn’t like mushrooms. Since the burger is pretty much entirely made of mushrooms, I decided to get out of my veggie burger rut and do something new.
Since it’s summer, there are plenty of delicious options for burgers and after a little brainstorming I came up with this mix. The result is a burger that can absolutely give the mushroom burger a run for its veggie-burger money. Instead of being savory and almost meat-like, this burger is bright and has fresh summer flavors.
You can eat it on a bun, but I like it just on lettuce also. If you skip the Greek yogurt topper, it also happens to be vegan for those keeping score!
1) Peel, cube, and boil sweet potatoes until tender (about 15 minutes). Drain and then cook quinoa according to package. I like to boil mine until it’s just starting to get tender. Then I drain it and return it to the pot, covered, off the heat, and let it steam for 5 minutes.
2) In a food processor, grate onion and zucchini. Remove from food processor and stir together with corn. Set aside.
3) Add mint and Serrano pepper to food processor and pulse until finely diced. Then add cooked quinoa, sweet potato, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt and pepper and pulse until mixture is in a rough paste.
4) Fold that mixture in with the grated veggies and stir to combine. Shape mixture into 6 large patties. You can make these well in advance.
5) In a large skillet or on a grill over medium-high heat, cook veggie burgers with a drizzle of olive oil for 5-6 minutes per side until they are crispy around the edges.
Serve veggie burgers on lettuce or bun with a dollop of greek yogurt and sprouts!
Sweet Potato Quinoa Veggie Burgers
Usually I’ll just toss in an egg or two for binder in burgers like this, but to lighten up the burger, I just used sweet potato. When you puree it, it actually works great as a binder and it holds the burger together enough that you can easily grill these bad boys.
The hardest part of this whole deal is actually just cooking the sweet potato and quinoa. You can just boil the sweet potato for 15 minutes until it’s tender and cook the quinoa according to the package.
I like to boil my quinoa for about 15 minutes until the “tails” start to come out. Then I drain it and return it to the pot, covered, to steam for 5 minutes.
Since you can’t cook these together, it’ll probably take you 25-30 minutes to get these two ingredients ready for the burgers. It’s worth it though and you could easily make these in advance.
You absolutely do not need a food processor to make these bad boys, but if you have one, the recipe becomes pretty easy. You can just grate the zucchini and onion with the grater attachment. Otherwise you can use a box grater.
Then stir that in with the sweet corn and set that aside. You don’t want to process this with the other ingredients so these things stay chunky in the burgers.
For the binder, start by mincing some mint and Serrano pepper. I like to leave the seeds in to give a little extra heat.
There’s a lot of flavor going on in this green mix.
Then add the quinoa and sweet potatoes along with some lemon juice and pulse that until the mixture is in a rough paste. Some sweet potato chunks are good and you don’t want it smooth at all. You can also just mash this all together with a potato masher if you are without food processor.
Fold that mixture into the grated veggies and add some breadcrumbs for extra binder.
This is ready for burger-izing!
You can make pretty big patties out of this mixture. The whole recipe should give you about six patties.
Cooking the Burgers
You have options here. A hot grill is a great choice, but you can also just cook them in a skillet with a good drizzle of oil. Whether you do grill or skillet, try not to fuss with them too much and let them really get a nice crust on them. Also, the more you mess with them the higher chance of them falling apart. They should hold up okay though.
You can stick these guys in a bun, but I like them on lettuce with a dollop of Greek yogurt and some fresh spicy sprouts.
Remember team: Vegetarians deserve to eat well too and this veggie burger is totally worth the work. In fact, I would take it over a subpar beef burger any day.