I am almost at the half way point of my vegetarian summer. So far, I’m digging it. I haven’t missed meat at all and haven’t caved to bacon. Brette thinks that if a vegetarian falters, it’s because of bacon. While I agree that bacon is delicious, so far I’ve been successful at saying no to the pig. Go me. My body seems to be responding well too. My energy is good and my stomach is much happier than it has been in a long time. I’ve had very few of those GSS moments (grotey stomach syndrome) since the summer began. Plus, I’ve been eating all sorts of great foods including the abundance of produce that is available right now. Man, I love summer in MN.
Today I want to chat about my latest favorite recipe.
I’ve been looking high and low for a non-meat burger that I can actually put on the grill. Yes, I know there are ton of packaged veggie and bean burgers out there, but I wanted to be able to make my own. I’m not much for food out of a box. Shocker, right? I’ve made all sorts of great non-meat burgers that I really enjoy, but none of them would make it on the grill. They are just too crumbly and would surely fall right into the coals…not what I’m going for.
After scouring different recipes and trying a quite a few burgers, I found one. I found it on a new blog I’ve been perusing, The Front Burner. These burgers are super flavorful and by pre-baking them and then finishing them on the grill, they held together like an actual burger and didn’t fall through the grates of the grill. Score!
I think these are also great candidates to freeze. I think you could par bake them, freeze, and then throw directly onto the grill whenever you’ve got the craving. Move over Morningstar Farms!
These are actually vegan burgers, but I think they are even better with blue cheese (what isn’t?) so my version is not vegan. However, if you’d like to omit the cheese, I’ll never know. Other than the blue cheese, I did not change much to the recipe other than add some comments, suggestions, and a little more cumin. You can check out Emily’s original recipe here.
Black and Blue Bean Burgers
Adapted from The Front Burner
Ingredients: (makes 6 burgers)
- 2 cans black beans (rinsed and drained) or 3 cups cooked black beans
- 2 carrots, grated
- 1/2 cup dry rolled oats (I’ve used both quick oats and regular and either will work fine)
- 1/4 cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds) or you could use unsalted sunflower seeds
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp coriander
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 3 to 6 ozs. blue cheese
To Prepare: Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
First, grate your carrots in a food processor (or use a box grater). Add the oats and the pepitas and grind until coarsely chopped (you should still be able to see what everything is). Add 3/4 of the beans, all spices, and the olive oil. Mix together in the food processor until it’s fairly smooth. A few chunks are okay.
Spoon mixture into a mixing bowl and then fold in the rest of the whole, reserved beans. Feel free to taste for seasonings at this point.
Wet your hands and then form into 6 medium sized patties. If you are not going to grill the burgers, place patties on a baking sheet (spray with non-stick spray or use a piece of parchment paper) or into a baking pan, and bake at 300 degrees for 40 minutes, turning once.
If you want to grill these, pre-bake them for 30 minutes at 300, and then throw them on the grill to reheat and get a little bit of that charcoal (or propane) flavor and some grill marks. Top with your favorite blue cheese and serve on your choice of vessel. My favorite is a toasted english muffin or pita bread.
As you can see, I like mine with a ketchup drizzle. My friend, Jon, added horseradish (made by my father) to his and Brette opts for just the blue cheese. I think hummus would also be good on these….but I think hummus is good on everything.
Time to put on a lid on this one.