Quinoa is loaded with lean protein, and when mixed with fragrant fresh herbs, toasted spices and caramelized vegetables, these tiny plumped-up seeds transform into a flavor-packed burger.
Because it's a complete protein, providing all of the essential amino acids our bodies need, quinoa is considered one of the staple superfoods.
Unlike other veggie burger recipes, you won't find an ounce of beans or soy anywhere in this recipe, which is perfect for those with a legume intolerance or allergy. To keep it vegan, omit the egg white, which is used as a binder, and replace with an additional two tablespoons of potato starch.
Quinoa veggie burger recipe
For the veggie burgers:
- 2 tablespoons olive or sunflower oil, plus 2 teaspoons
- 1/4 cup each minced carrot, celery, bell pepper, eggplant
- 1 small onion, minced
- 1/2 cup diced baby bella mushrooms, minced (about 6 – 8 mushrooms)
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup black quinoa, rinsed
- 1 cup water
- 2 teaspoons potato starch
- 1/4 cup minced fresh flat leaf parsley
- 1 egg white
- Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
For pan frying:
- Cornstarch for dusting
- 1 tablespoon olive or sunflower oil
- In a medium saute pan, heat two tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Add carrot, celery and half the onion; cook three minutes. Add bell pepper, eggplant, mushrooms, salt, cayenne and thyme; cook, stirring occasionally, six minutes or until vegetables are caramelized. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds). Add the tomato paste and cook for one minute. Remove from heat.
- In a small saucepan, heat two teaspoons of oil over medium heat. Add remaining onion; cook until softened, about three minutes. Add quinoa and toast until fragrant, about three minutes. Add water and a pinch of kosher salt; bring to boiling, reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook until quinoa is tender, about seven minutes.
- Transfer quinoa to a large bowl; add vegetable mixture. Sprinkle potato starch over quinoa and gently stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste and stir in parsley. Beat egg white until foamy and fold into the vegetable mixture. Mixture will be moist and sticky. Mold into four large patties by hand, or using a ring mold (such as a round biscuit cutter or cookie cutter) and set on a parchment lined baking sheet. Place in the freezer for 20 minutes or refrigerate one hour to set.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly dust both sides of patties with cornstarch. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a large nonstick, oven-safe skillet, over medium heat. Add the patties and brown on first side. Gently flip patties and place the skillet in the oven for 12 minutes. Remove from oven; serve warm.
Baked option: Skip the cornstarch and skillet, and place the patties directly in the oven to bake at 325 degrees F for 25 minutes.
Add your favorite veggies: Any vegetable can be substituted for the eggplant, peppers and mushrooms, in the same quantities – about 1/4 cup each.
More quinoa recipes
Gluten-free and easy quinoa recipe
Top Chef Masters: Quinoa fritters
How to cook quinoa