Easy and flavorful veggie burgers that are perfect for grilling! These vegan burgers are made with black beans, seared mushrooms and veggie ground, all of which give the patties that classic burger taste and texture. No bland insides, just a delicious burger made entirely out of plants sure to please vegans and meat-eaters alike!
This recipe is based off of my Vegan Swedish Meatballs and Gravy . The meatballs hold together well and we love the flavor. With all of the summer grilling going on, I just had to see how the recipe would do made into vegan burgers on the barbecue! I made only a few tweaks to the meatball recipe to get perfect patties.
A great vegan burger needs great flavor – lots of umami in particular. These veggie burgers are filled with it! Onions, garlic, vegan Worcestershire sauce, black beans, seared mushrooms (hello umami bombs!) and veggie ground are all rich in umami.
Binders are important for any burger. Vegan burgers don’t contain egg so we have to get creative. Puréed cooked onion and beans act as binders. The key one though is gluten – once it’s moistened and the mixture is kneaded a bit, the gluten forms strands which give structure to the burgers.
Texture is also so important. We get the meaty texture from half of the beans which remain mostly intact, the seared meaty mushrooms, and the veggie ground.
Tips for Making Vegan Burgers
Pulse, don’t blend the beans and mushrooms. I can’t emphasize this enough. You’re better to under pulse on your food processor than to to over blend. Over blending will cause the mushrooms and beans create a paste. This, of course, should not come as a surprise but I’ll say it anyway – a pasty mixture will result in pasty burgers. We want texture! So don’t over blend.
Chill the mixture. I’ve tested grilling the burgers on the barbecue straight from the mixing bowl and after letting it chill. Chilling made the burgers much easier to handle and likely to break when you’re placing them on the barbecue.
Be gentle. If you aren’t vegan or vegetarian, these burgers are going to be a pleasant surprise for you. But know that because they don’t contain meat, they aren’t going to hold up exactly like meat either. They are going to be a little more delicate than a meat-based hamburger, but chilling and good grilling techniques should leave you without even a crack in any of the burgers.
Prepare the grill. Make sure that it’s clean, preheated and that the grates are oiled before grilling the patties so they don’t stick. Brush the patties with oil, too, to help create a crisp exterior. Allow them to cook for a solid 4 minutes on one side before flipping them. Flipping back and forth is unnecessary and only increases your chances of breaking them. Brush them with your favorite BBQ sauce as they finish cooking, if desired. Transfer them to a clean baking sheet or other flat surface (plates tend to round up at the sides). They will firm up more as they cool a bit.
These vegan burger patties can be made 2 to 3 days ahead of time and then grilled. You can either have the mixture sitting in a sealed container in the fridge, or (if you have the room) have them preformed and sitting on a covered baking sheet.
Vegan Burgers – Easy, Grillable and Hearty
burger taste and texture. No mushy bland insides, just a delicious burger made entirely out of plants sure to please vegans and meat-eaters alike!
- 5 tbsp olive oil, divided plus more for coating and grilling
- 1 small onion, diced
- 12 oz crimini mushrooms, diced small
- 15 oz black beans, drained, rinsed & patted dry
- ⅓ cup vital wheat gluten
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast, optional
- 3 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 3 cups veggie ground*, thawed if frozen
- 8 burger buns
- burger toppings and condiments of choice
- In a large cast iron or non-stick skillet, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat. Add in the diced onions, and cook until translucent and soft, about 5-6 minutes.
- Place the cooked onions in the food processor with half of the black beans. Blend on high until a paste has formed. Add in the gluten, nutritional yeast, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, thyme, oregano and black pepper. Blend for a few minutes until blend and to work the gluten. A ball may form – stop the machine occasionally and break it up. Leave the mixture in the food processor to rest while you cook the mushrooms.
- Return the skillet to the stove and add in 3 tbsp of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add in the diced mushrooms, and cook until browned and they're no longer releasing any liquid. This should take 8-10 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms and the rest of the black beans to the food processor and pulse a few times to blend the mushrooms and beans in. Don't over process – you want pieces of mushrooms and beans intact for texture.
- Place the mixture in a large bowl, and add the veggie ground. Mix well with a spatula or your hands. Knead/squeeze the mixture for 2 minutes to work the gluten. Using a large muffin scoop or a 1/2 cup measure sprayed with oil to scoop the mixture, form the mixture into 8 patties and place on large baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for about an hour.
- When ready to grill, heat the barbecue to medium-high and brush the grill with oil. Brush the patties with oil, place them on the hot grill and close the lid. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until you have dark grill marks, then gently flip. Cook for another 3 to 4 minutes, brushing with barbecue sauce if desired.
- Remove burgers from grill, and place on a clean baking sheet. They will firm up even more as they cool slightly. Toast the burger buns. Serve with your favorite burger toppings and condiments.